The kids go back to school in two weeks. We have been together almost every single moment of this summer vacation, the exception of a week of full day sports camp for Erin and then Erin and Chris did a half day soccer camp for a week. No break from Meghan, and all access kidtime the rest of the time. Today I blew my lid. My mom and dad are visiting, so I always love showing off my skills as a model parent when they are around. Here's how the morning went.
I put on water to poach an egg for myself at 830am after having 2 cups of coffee. In the meantime Erin asked me to do her nails, including removing the old gunky stuff and therefore I also had to trim her desperately jagged nails. Repeat for Meghan. At the same time, Christopher needed help gettting into his rollerblades. My dad called from the kitchen that the water was boiling. I asked him to turn it off because now I was in the midst of manis and pedis. My mom mentioned that she was going to take a shower. Prompting Meghan and Christopher to fight over who was next. (Couldn't be bothered with showers last night, much to the grossed-outedness of my mother) Yell at kids for fighting. A bee flies onto the porch. Erin starts waving a cup of apple juice to keep it away, dumping the contents on herself, the porch and a chair. She heads to the shower. My mom calls from upstairs that Chris would prefer a bath. I start to let loose a string of PG rated obscenities about FINE I DON'T CARE WHAT THEY DO GOD GEEZ IVE BEEN TRYING TO EAT BREAKFAST FOR AN HOUR DONT YOU KNOW THAT YOU NEED TO LEARN PATIENCE AND TO WAIT THE WORLD DOES NOT REVOLVE AROUND YOU GOD YOU GUYS ARE READY TO GO BACK TO SCHOOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Yup, I bit my tongue all summer long making sure I didn't utter that phrase. But I did. I feel crappy and blame myself for creating this system of instant gratification. I've likened it to a short order cook. When I worked at the snack shack of a swim club when I was a teenager I always tore thru the line taking 3 to 4 customers at a time to keep the line moving. Inevitibly making errors along the way. Just trying to move them through the lunch rush to get a chance to relax when everyone had been served. Being a parent doesn't work like that. When you are home with your kids you can't really rest, but you can be rest assured that there is always one more repeat customer coming back because they ordered their burger without pickles. What I've taken from this is that I need to teach my kids to wait. They'll be better people for it, and they will have a much better shot of getting what they want.