Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Life, in general

Did I make a mistake last night? Should you ever withhold kisses from your children? I have been toying with guilt this morning. Ethan is entering what I can only surmise as the pre-teen years or the marketers neologism - a tween? Could that really be at age 8? There is this pervasive attitude of questioning me, rarely taking responsibility of his poor behavioral choices and steadfastness in justifying his actions. I am sad, because Ethan has always been a people pleaser, very tender-hearted and well, somewhat reliable. I know my limits as his mother. Now it is Jay's turn to help mold Ethan into a man.

Last night, he was making his own choices which were contrary to ones his dad would have him make. Ethan was sent to his room. I came upstairs a little while later to check on his school uniform stock for next year. His declaration that his dad was, "mean," and insistence that he had not done anything wrong was disheartening to hear. My response to him was not well received and when I went to tuck him for the night with a kiss, was told, "I don't want one." So, I said, ok and walked out his door. The howling, crying and begging that began at that point was pretty pitiful, but I felt that he needed to know that what he says matters. The impact of his choice needed to have consequences, so therefore, I never went back into his room. Actually, now that I type it out, I am good. No more guilt. I did the right thing.

Sadie is up to her usual frolics. Seriously, where does she come up with these things. A couple of days ago, we had a very strong downpour. No thunder or lightening, but just heavy, heavy rain and wind. It was around dinner time and we were at the table eating it and watching it come down in sheets. However, water was spilling over the gutters which didn't bode well. Jay ran upstairs with a pole to clear out whatever was clogging up the gutter. I walked up to see if I could lend a hand (really just being nosey). As I peered into the gutter which ran under Sadie's window, I see what was clogging the gutter - pencils. Yes, you can say it with me, "What?" Sadie had opened her window, thrown pencils out, and then closed and locked her window. Oh, and I also saw a night light light bulb floating down as well. Punishment was swift and painful - administered by Jay.

There comes a point when you just give up on trying to understand what goes on in a person's mind. While most of us live our lives thinking, "what if..." or "what would happen if...," she chooses to actually act it out to realize the outcome. Keep praying for us...

Lil' Bill (Lily) is working her independence. My attempts to draw out the sweetness I know is underneath that little 3, almost 4, year old demeanor has seen little success. But I persevere. At least she is obsessed with doing "summer work." This amounts to practicing her writing, school workbooks, etc. She loves it.

As for me, I am lonely these days. My schedule is super busy, but yet, I am alone. Laughter is sparse and I am a little perplexed and saddened. I am sure that the complexities of my life at the moment (intensity of the new business, recovery and soreness from surgery, challenges of motherhood and the tenuous balancing act of it all) are at the root of it. Nevertheless, I need my friends, I need a day or a night filled with ridiculous craziness. My great friend, Amy, made her first DVD of photos and music. She sent me (and I am sure several of you) a copy of it - entitled, "girlfriends." Knowing it was filled with pictures of past girls' nights out and scrapbook trips which included Ansley and Robin (now living in TN), I was sure I would spend much of my viewing time crying. Contrary to this, I spent most of the time smiling, giggling at times. I miss those times and wonder why they are not still happening. Where are you, my friends? Isn't it time to come together?


Anonymous said...

Hey friend!
I'm coming to NC Aug 5-14th!

Angela said...

Hi Kels,
Yes, the tween years can start at eight. I've been in the same position where Ais has been mad and refused a goodnight kiss. I made the same choice you did to help her learn that her words matter. You can't throw out hurtful words and then wish them back in. Squirt out a tube of toothpaste to show Ethan that like words the toothpaste can't go back in the tube.
Pencils? Very interesting. Just to make you feel better - everyone's child does crazy things. Paxton was jumping on the sofa last night, hit his head on the game table and created a nice gash in it. Of course, Patrick was out of town and I had to take Pax to get his head glued back together.
Take heart! The daily routines of mothering do matter!!! Maybe we can schedule a girls' night out with you, Katie, and I when she is in town. I'll be out of town the 8th-10th with the high school youth planning retreat, but any other time should be fine.