How is a 2-3 min. car ride to school capable of completely changing the mood of the morning?
Every one was up, dressed, finished with breakfast and happy. Lunches weren't quite ready when we hear the squeak of the bus tires, so I tell the girls I will run them up to school. It's just about a mile away. Close enough to walk if we got an earlier start, but it's always the bus or we drive if we're a few minutes behind.
Down the front walk, my 6 year old begins explaining how she's just like a teenager. She has her phone in her hand (an old one of my father-in-laws that she plays with), her book and her rolling backpack. She tells me the car is an airplane because she has her suitcase, phone and book to read. So funny.
My oldest is in shorts. It's chilly out, but has been so nice in the afternoons. She confirms that it is supposed to warm up and says this might not have been the day to dress "cute" since her legs are a bit cold. I assure her it will warm up and I like her outfit, too.
We back up out of the driveway, first fit. Little one can't get the seatbelt on right so big sister is trying to help and is getting frustrated with the attitude she is getting. I convince the little one to let her sister help and the older one to calm down and both of them to speak nicely.
We drive several houses down and now the little one is kicking the air and hitting her legs because the seatbelt is bugging her (I mentioned we have sensory issues around here, right?). This annoys the older one who starts telling her to calm down in a not so calm voice.
We round the first turn, about a block from our house. The noise from the back is getting louder. I stop the car and tell them they are not to speak to each other anymore, re-explain why the seatbelt is being funky because it is the same reason it gets messed up every single time we get into the car and this happens. The little miss now throws her fake phone and she is informed that she will be leaving that in the car and will not be playing with it for the rest of the day.
Now my youngest is crying and is still pissed off at the seatbelt. I can see my older one speaking under her breath, I know threats are happening, she is reminded not to speak to her sister.
We hit the first of 2 stop signs. My big girl thanks me for driving them to school. She knows I am not happy and starts to try to make amends. The little one is still fussing. She says thank you, too, in between pouty tears.
We hit the second stop sign and now my older one starts thinking about entering school, they just had 4 days off and that always makes re-entry difficult. She starts to contemplate her wardrobe choice and starts to get nervous about the whole wearing shorts thing. Little one is starting to calm down.
We pull into the school and I hear, "Why did I wear shorts? People are going to be asking me a million questions. They are going to make fun of me. They are going to say I am fat. Look at all these bruises on my legs from playing this weekend. They look horrible......" I remain silent because I have no idea how to comfort all these thoughts out of her in the 2 seconds before she leaves the car. My youngest has now stopped fussing.
The side door of the van is opened for them to go into the building. They say good bye, they love me. I say that I love them too and I hope they have a good day.
They walk into school and I drive home on the verge of tears.
What the hell just happened? What am I supposed to do with this? Is there a parenting lesson here? Did I miss the mark on this one or are my children just out of there little minds like many other children out there? Holy crap!
Sometimes I just don't know about this parenting gig. Somedays I feel like a freakin' rock star of a parent. The kids are happy, well behaved, kind to each other and to other people and happy. Other days like today I feel like I am doing something so wrong because I can't even have a 3 min. drive to school without all hell breaking loose.
I just feel sad.
I don't know what they are going to do once they are in the building. My kindergardener will probably go into the class just fine because the damn seatbelt is not on any more. My fifth graders whole day is going to hinge on what the first person says about her outfit. I hope it is a friend. I hope it is not someone who is going to be unkind to her. I can't control any of this. I dropped them off and had to leave and assume that all would be OK. There is a lot of letting go in parenting.
Now, I am going to go get some coffee, fold some laundry, and let go of this morning. I do not get a notch in my good parenting belt this morning, but the belt has not been taken away. I get to try again later today and hopefully it will go better.
This blog is a stream of conciousness from my head to the keyboard to the screen. There will be talk of random subjects. If you have delicate eyes, proceed with caution. I like to talk about controversial subjects and sex a lot. So, take heed my friends. This is not a blog for debate, but for love and sharing. If your views do not match my own, love to you, but don't bring the rest of us down. That's all I'm saying.