I am exhausted, and not just the I’ve had a long day kind of tired but a feeling that part of my brain, the part that is supposed to have parental know how is completely stretched out.
I have listened to a four year old cry, plead, throw herself on the floor, and run out into the street – all for a dollar plastic harmonica…
Today is Tuesday and as I stated before, we planned on doing something thoughtful for Too Kind Tuesdays. Since we had leftover marshmallows from yesterday’s craft, we made purple, heart shaped rice krispie treats. We were giving them to Gia’s best friend, who we were meeting with, along with her mom and baby sister at Dunkin Donuts.
Gia wrote her a little note and then we used a cookie box, covered it in tin foil and decorated it with stickers.
Gia’s friend got her special box and we were going to have a nice afternoon.
Coffee in hand, donuts on the table, we were happy as could be…that is…for five minutes until four sugar crazed girls were running amok, giggling and playing, actually more like screaming- they all have Italian in their blood- they’re loud!
We grabbed our coffees and skedaddled out to the dollar store. Another brilliant idea – taking little children into stores with tons of little, plastic toys – recipe for disaster.
Take a look around at Moms’ faces in stores- they are typically reprimanding their children, explaining to them why they can’t have something, or just tense and waiting – holding their breath and praying they can get out without a temper tantrum.
“I want three toys,” demanded Gia.
No, I said, “You only get one toy.”
“I make the rules and I get three,”said Gia.
“I’m sorry Gia but I said you get one toy for ten stickers from your teeth brushing chart,” I said.
“You’re the meanest mom ever,” Gia pouted, and then said, “I make the rules and I get three toys.”
“Gia, you won’t get any toys if you continue on this way,” I said, feeling slightly frustrated.
“Ok I want this flute and the princess castle,” she came up with.
“I said one toy!” My blood was beginning to boil as we went back and forth about this.
“Ok I’ll take the flute,” she finally consented.
“Thank goodness,” I thought to myself because I was about to lose it!
We make it to the register, pay for the flute, and I open the package for her. She plays with it for no less than a minute says, “I don’t want the flute anymore. I don’t like it. I really wanted the harmonica.”
I feel myself go white and have a sinking feeling as I realize the worst is yet to come.
I take a deep breath and calmly say, “I’m sorry you don’t like the flute but you chose it, maybe next time we can get the harmonica.”
Tears, rage, and defiance fill this adorable little face of hers. A sweet puppy transformed into a ferocious bull dog.
“I don’t want this anymore, I don’t like this flute. I want the harmonica!!! Please, please, please,” she is literally throwing herself at me now.
We manage to get outside and the fit of rage continues on the sidewalk. She is pressed up against the store front, bright red, and crying. ( I am seeing activist in her future with her arms spread wide in front of a National Park trying to end destruction of trees…)
This goes on quite a while as visions of big glasses of delicious wine dance in my head, as well as a bubbly, hot pizza so I don’t have to make dinner, and Grandma taking them away for a sleepover…
Ok- focus Jill- “What should I do? Should I just go in and buy the damn harmonica or do I be the tough mommy, sticking to my guns…This could be over in seconds if I simply buy that little piece of plastic that costs one dollar and will most likely break anyway – but I can’t, no I can’t, “ I am in charge, I am the boss,” I say to myself like some desperate dodo practicing what they repeatedly listened to from a self-help audio book.
I choose not to buy the harmonica. I pick that writhing, mad little bundle up, and force her into the car, strap her and her sister in, start the car, and do my best to ignore the screams and pleadings to “Please, please, please can we go back and get the harmonica!”
The rest of the evening wasn’t the most relaxing ever but G finally managed to move past this tragedy in her life. And you know how, (don’t know why I didn’t think of this before- I told her that Daddy played the flute when he was little and I’m sure he would be so excited to hear her play).
And that is the conclusion of this Too Kind Tuesday… now I am going to be kind to myself and put my feet up, read, and relax…
“Moooomy, Moooomy, Mommy- help- Ari pooped in the bath and it is so so disgusting.” Well, maybe not.