Friday, March 29, 2013

I Love a Good Achilles Heel

Today was a rough day. Yes, we had school. The last day before break. Please don’t remind me that all other schools in the area were out. And no they were NOT out for Good Friday...they were out because they know that half the population takes off early and won’t be there anywhere so they just go ahead and close the school.

There’s no religious aspect to it.

Unless they’re Catholic.  I’m fairly certain that those schools are legitimately closed on Good Friday.

And yes, we are Christians, but we still had school. I saw nothing wrong with it. We’re about to have a week off, then only 6 more weeks to go until we’re out for the summer.

Six more weeks.

But who is counting?

We will then get 2 ½ months off. Because we’re starting back up on July 30.

Makes me twitchy to say we’re starting in July.

But we are.

And I’m really not ready to discuss it.

So let us put it aside and I shall tell you what I intended to tell you all along.

Today was a rough day. I tried to get the PBA to finish some work yesterday, since they finished kind of early, in the hopes that we would have “minimal-to-no-work” at all today.

But they were lazy. They, themselves, admitted it.

And I was frustrated because I had errands to run. I don’t have a lot of time to run errands, so they always end up on the same day (usually Friday), which can make Friday afternoons somewhat tedious.

Today was one of those times….which, may I just say, could have been a Friday morning, had they completed their work yesterday, but I digress.

I’m not bitter at all about it.

Yes, I like my sarcasm think…just like I like my butter cream icing. Don’t judge.

Sorry…I’m hungry.

So…you might be wondering about the Achilles Heel. I’m getting to it.

If you are a mom or have spent anytime whatever with children, you know that there is SOMETHING you can do which will drive them to their knees…begging for forgiveness or repentance.

Or, at the very least, an apology. Maybe even one without an eyeroll.

It’s clearly different for every child.

As a youngster, my 11yo would be brought to tears by the prospect of a spanking; the 10yo would laugh following a spanking.

That never did much for my personal attitude…but I digress.

I have taken every single toy out of the 10yo’s room for weeks on end. His response, “I didn’t really like that stuff anyway.”

Yes, he’s a challenge, to say the least.

So today, I had my aforementioned errands.

One of them involved visiting the mall. Two days before Easter.

It was only one store, but yes, I had a death wish. Clearly.

After parking in the back 40, and repeatedly grabbing the 10yo from the center of the street to keep him from being hit by the traffic, we made our way into the mall. By this point, I was kind of over the errands. But we were already there. Committed. So I was determined to carry it out.

Well, I’m certain my attitude had no bearing whatsoever on my inability to make a decision on the birthday gift I was trying to buy…but it probably didn’t help.

Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum were not helping either.

And yet…I continued on. I did not do what I would have when they were younger: which is put down whatever it was that I was planning to buy, grab each child by a hand, and briskly escort them out of the story.

In silence.

Well, I would be silent. They would be apologizing all over themselves because they knew what was coming in the car.

Or worse…when we got home.

But not today, my friends. Not today.

Today I continued to browse, occasionally pausing to administer the stink eye over my shoulder.

At some point, I became completely uninspired about the gift, and then I transitioned to looking for a new dress.
If you know me at all, you realize I need another dress like I need a hole in my head. 

But for the right dress, I would make an exception.

At one point, we were next to a mom and her pair of identical twin girls. They looked to be approximately 6. They were hugging one another and one girl was telling the other one how much she loved her.

I noticed that the PBA were taking this in as well, eyebrows raised, as if to say, “What in the WORLD are those two doing?”

So I said to the PBA, “Why can’t you be more like that?”

11yo: Well, Mom, there’s lots of reasons. For one…we’re brothers and not sisters.

10yo: Yeah…we’re not GIRLS (he almost spit the word, as though it was a bad thing)

Me: I mean…couldn’t you just be a LITTLE bit like that? Hug each other or something (I was clearly going for the laugh, because I am fully aware that that wasn’t going to happen. I make them hug when they apologize after a knock-down-drag-out fight…but not any other time.)

Eyerolls from both boys followed.

My attempt at humor lightened my own mood for a minute, and I continued on, but I’ll admit that my patience was still wearing thin.

And finally, I’d had enough of the “non-help” trailing behind me. I turned fully around to witness some sort of shenanigans. They halted…fully surprised.

I leaned in very close and whispered…loud enough for only them to hear, or so I thought…I did see a lady pass by us, who was taking it in and she giggled at what I said…so perhaps the volume was higher than I thought.

I leaned in close a said, “You realize that this Easter dress shopping is punishment for how things have gone today thus far. If it continues, there will also be purse, shoe and jewelry shopping. Am I clear?”

Two pairs of bulging eyes and two bobbing heads looked back at me.

I really didn’t hear much from them after that.

Thank you, Achilles Heel.


  1. We Catholics had school today. Granted it was a half day, and part of the day was dedicated to live stations of the cross, but we did have school. You are not alone.
    As for the shopping, ugh. I give so many of those stink eyes, I'm surprised my eyes haven't stuck.
    Have a wonderful Easter!

  2. Oh yes...In The Coop...I forgot you were talking about how you were planning to tear up and embarrass Buttercup. How did I not remember?!? You have a wonderful Easter, too!

  3. We did not have school, and we are jipped out of a day off, because it is spring break...
    and you are a stink'in genius!!! great job parenting. mind if i use that threat with my children? the big ones are terrible shoppers!