I’m really a very easy-going person. My family would argue that fact, but unless I’m hormonal or you take away my coffee, wine or chocolate, I’m your best friend. However, there are some things I encounter on a daily basis that make me want to Google boarding schools. Especially grievous are the flippant attitudes of certain members of my household who ignore me as if I’m that teacher in Charlie Brown with the incoherent annoying whine.
I ask these individuals, who call themselves inmates, every single day to rinse their cereal bowls of cemented Krispies and to pick up their noxious clothing off the bathroom floor. I can only think of two reasons why they would defy me—either they don’t remember, which is not valid because they can recite word-for-word their last 15 texts, or they simply choose to disregard my appeals which, to me, screams, “Mom, I just frieking don’t care what you say.” Any mom would take that as a virtual slap in the face.
From one Frazzled Mom to another, here are my Top Ten Pet Peeves:
10 - Putting clothes in the laundry hamper although you’ve only had them on your body for 30 seconds. (The grimy clothes, wet from an improperly secured shower curtain, are wadded on the bathroom floor).
9 - It is not my job to flush your toilet.
8 - Plopping on the sofa in front of your spaghetti-sauce crusted plate from last night, completely unfazed, logging onto Facebook. This is not a restaurant. Scrubbing a bowl of Spaghettio residue that has dried longer than an ICarly marathon is also not my job.
7 - Leaving wet, muddy cleats from the last soccer tournament tied up in a plastic garbage bag for 4 days. If those bacteria-laden, putrid shin guards are in there, I’m throwing the whole thing away, and don’t ask me where that bag is.
6 - Asking me “Why are you yelling?” after I’ve told you 12 times calmly to pick up the cat hair from the pile of clean towels.
5 - Tearing my house apart 30 minutes before a game looking for basketball uniforms, a certain kind of sock, sports bras, basketball shoes, both colors of soccer uniforms, shin guards, cleats, cleat inserts (so you won’t get plantar fasciitis in your heel again. I am at Campbell Clinic so often I have my own letterhead), Underarmor, food, water, and head bands for two kids for basketball games and soccer games occurring back to back in one night. YOU should’ve found all that the night before, but you were too busy conducting crucial business on Facebook.
4 - Being at softball and soccer until 9:30 pm and learning at 11:00 pm after a glass of wine that I have to edit a 7-page paper comparing a Vampire book to “Dante’s Inferno” or something. An inferno sounds like a great place for those who used their study halls to make Youtube videos of themselves.
3 - Finding clothes I bought you six months ago, which you asked for, in your closet with the tags still on because they were uber-dorky in the first place.
2 - Having to say, “Retrace your steps!” ten times a day. Losing the uniform you need tonight—ok. Losing your new underwater camera? —how ‘bout I lose your unlimited texting? My last desperate option is following you around all day to ensure you won’t misplace things. However, having your embarrassing, absurdly uncool fossil of a mother behind you will substantially decrease your swag.
AND THE #1 THING I HATE - is the fact that you’re growing up so fast. I almost have to stand on my tiptoes to hug you. One of you wears the same size clothes I do. You sing as you’re pouring your chocolate milk and twirl around in the kitchen in your snow man pajama pants until you fall down laughing. When you turn 18 in a short while, it won’t be my job to remind you to take Vitamin C when you’re sick. I won’t be there to make sure you don’t speed going to school. And it won’t be my job to tell you to say your prayers at night.
But right now, I DO have responsibilities. I promise I’ll do them with all my heart, and I will give you the very best of me. My job is to love you and help you learn from your mistakes, to tell you no, and to take the car away. To hug you when your heart is breaking and urge you to search for silver linings. I will check your phone, stalk you on Facebook, and help you with English, but not geometry. I’ll let you fail your biology test, but I won’t let you off the hook. I will make you pay for that swimsuit, push you to give 100%, and encourage you to dream. I’ll remind you that God has a plan for your life and advise you that good girls don’t dance that way. And when you’re out for the night, I’ll fall to my knees and pray for you to prevail against all the spiritual warfare waging around you.
As you grow you’ll learn how to follow a budget and learn the joy of sacrificing the last piece of apple pie to your son with a sweet tooth and a sticky smile. I promise to help you face your giants and find your way to the next fork in the road. Currently I’m helping you find your history homework and your retainer. “You probably threw the retainer away with your Spaghettios at lunch. It’s not my job to keep track of your personal property! When’s the last time you had it? Are you sure? You need to retrace your steps!”