Fridays man. Last time I checked they were supposed to be happy and upbeat, everyone jazzed for the weekend. My kids apparently missed that memo and decided to be right little shits this morning. Noelle was tired. Her hands were weak. She didn't like computers as they were 'too hard'. She didn't want to wear short sleeves. She was tired. Her stomach hurt. All this before she even got out of bed. Once out of bed I handed her the clothes she had selected and told her to carry them into the other room to get dressed.
"No, Mommy. You carry them."
Um, no. These are your clothes child and you will carry them. Now. She grabbed the clothes and back rigid in protest, marched into my and Dyl's room to get dressed for the day. She turned to me with her 'I'm going to cry now' face and burst into tears. Oh godfuckingdammit. I so don't do drama yet apparently birthed the biggest drama queen ever to dramz.
We managed to get through the remainder of the dressing, eating breakfast, brushing teeth and getting out the door without further hysterics from either one. Until the time came to drop Noelle off at the before/after school care program at her school. (Note: we really don't have a choice in this. School doesn't start until 9:15; car riders cannot arrive before 8:55 and the bus for our neighborhood picks up at 8:35ish. Neither Dylan nor I can wait until the bus comes as our jobs simply don't allow us the luxury of rolling in that late plus Noah still has to be dropped off at preschool/daycare. Am I justifying? Yes. Moving on.) So because of the delays getting started, we didn't leave the house until 7:30.
Because of logistics, Noelle is dropped at her program first. Now, Noah is 3 and the idea of locking him in the van while I take Noelle to the program is pretty untenable so he comes along too. And he loves it. He wants so desperately to go to the big school that when informed no, you are going to your school come on, we're late, pretty much all hell breaks loose.
He went limp then when I picked him up, went straight as a board (aside: how do they know to do this?). When I readjusted my grip on him, he squirmed around until he was facing me and started hitting at me and spitting. I ignored the histrionics until the time came to put him back in the van. Then full-on shrieking, hitting and spitting: NO! NO! I FIVE! I FIVEEEEEEEEE!
Then it happened. I snapped. Not hard but enough that I actually slapped his face. He stopped, stunned then started right back up with the hitting and spitting at me. So I slapped his hand. Neither was hard but it was sharp. I finally got him buckled in and stone-faced marched back to the driver's door. He's screaming and kicking and flailing in the back seat, shouting at me when I turned and and lashed out myself, "I don't like you very much right now. I will always love you forever but right now, I don't particularly like you." And I hated myself the moment the words were out. For my words, for my hands. What did I do wrong? How did it get to that point? I'm the adult, I know better. How do I teach not to hit and spit when pushed to the breaking point, I do the same? And the words. Oh god, the words. Those are what will stay with a child forever. I should have condemned the behavior, not make it sound like I was condemning him.
All the way into daycare he repeated my words back at me: I don't like you Mommy. I don't love you so much anymore. All I could do was stare straight ahead and not respond, tears streaming down my face. In the parking lot I turned to him and told him that I was sorry for getting mad. I managed to stop myself before the almost inevitable '...but...' I told him that I should have said that I didn't like his behavior, not him (even though in the heat of the moment it was true) and that I love him always and forever. We hugged and cuddled and the rest of drop off went as normal but the guilt, the second-guessing, that will never go away.
Then I get to work, remember that we are down parking spaces due to renovations and visitors will be here to see the engineering marvel underway so managers had to park in another lot that was not well marked so I parked where I thought was correct and prayed that I didn't get towed. Another manager in the department commented on a rejection notice I had written the previous day and said, oh, this has a repack. Add the other inspection lot to this rejection. The time it took for him to do that he could have done it his own damn self. Oversized boxes and containers were waiting to go up to technical which I couldn't do because, hey, my car was on the plant lot and while putting on my sunglasses to walk what I could up the technical, they snapped in half.
I have never been so glad as to have a bottle of Mommy's Time Out waiting at home because I need it today. For multiple reasons.
I love you Doodlebug. Tomorrow will be better. I promise.