Today’s featured blogger is Kate from On-the-Go-Mama! Not only does Kate have a fantastic blog, but she also finds the time to work as the primary contributor at Mother’s Central. I love Kate’s writing. It just flows and you always want to read more. She has a way of sharing her stories that make us all feel like we’re right there with her family. I love that. She’s sharing a post today about a late night mommy mess I’m sure you can all relate with. I know I can!
Please welcome, Kate. When you get done here, be sure to head over and check out her gorgeous blog. It’s red. I love red.
An Unexpected Mess
One would never guess that the two siblings sitting side-by-side, shoulder-to-shoulder, that night on the family room floor weren’t always a perfect picture of sibling love.
The evening’s movie was about to concluded and I smiled as I watched them together now.
Being a parent can be a hard and thankless job sometimes, however it’s times like these that I tend to remember how “worth it” the challenge of parenting is. I admired their sleepy faces as their expressions changed with the movie’s end, how peaceful and happy they both seemed.
Glancing to my right, I realized the clock showed the unreasonably late hour of 10:30 p.m. “Okay kids, time for bed!” I announced.
“But mom! I’m hungry.” Complained my 6-year-old.
You’re always hungry! I silently thought, and only aloud uttered, “Sorry, you’ll have to wait for breakfast.” I tried hard not to sound annoyed, we had enjoyed such a nice evening together… I didn’t want to ruin that.
I diligently picked up the popcorn bowls and blankets. Nearly 5 minutes later, a little more sternly, I administered a 2nd warning to my 6- and 10-year-old who were still diddle-daddling around, “Kids, go upstairs and get ready for bed!” I instructed. It was only seconds later when, from out of nowhere, my ears were met with the somewhat piercing scream of my daughter.
“NOOOO! NO! … That was my last licorice.” She dramatically cried. “MO-ooooo-OM!”
I turned to my son (who had so obviously been told there would be no more snacks) and encounter the overly-tired and guilty looking eyes of a 6-year-old. “Now that wasn’t nice. I told you no snack.” I responded, as he quickly chomped down the last of the licorice stick before I could take it back. “Say you’re sorry, or you will not be able to sleep in your sister’s room tonight.”
The small evening storm quickly elevated into a wild outbreak of emotions. The two siblings, that only moments ago were the best of friends, had slipped into the worst of enemies.
“NO!” responded my son defiantly as my daughter’s over-the-top wail again rang through the hallway.
Note to self:
1 Long Day
+ 2 Children 10 and Under
+ 1 Two-hour Movie (started later than anticipated)
+ 2 Equally Tired Parents
Does NOT often = a happy ending.
“Well, I guess you will be sleeping in your own room tonight.” My rising voice sadly spoke, expecting him to immediately apologize. But his exhaustion was too deep and his thought process now impaired.
How could a night that had gone so well, end so badly?
I expected his reaction and prepared myself for more tears. What I didn’t expect was the adverse reaction from my daughter. “But MOM! That’s. NO. FAIR! We ALWAYS sleep together on the weekends?” She angrily bellowed.
In an instant, her love for her brother had returned and immediately replaced the loathing she had felt from his indiscretion. How quickly things can change between siblings. In confusion I turned to my daughter, as my punishment had partly been in her defense.
What was meant to penalize to my son apparently had also chastised my daughter, and inadvertently I became her problem and not her rescuer. How is it that somehow, even with the best parenting intentions - I almost always end up being the bad guy?
It’s true, you can never anticipate when disorder will reign in a household filled with love. A perfectly good night can tumble to shambles in a matter of minutes. Even a laid-back evening of movies can end as an unexpected mess.
And as I watched my two children disappear up the dark stairs in tears yet also in camaraderie, my heart ached.
Yep, I thought in defeat, being a parent can be such a hard and thankless job… but yet, I still wouldn’t trade it for anything.
Leave a Comment: What are your biggest challenges as a parent? Do your children break-up and make-up faster than you can even distinguish the problem? How do you keep yourself positive as a parent when often feeling like the bad guy?
About Kate: Kate Fineske is a busy, on-the-go, not-so-perfect, sometimes forgetful (yet well meaning) mom of 3. She is the author of On-the-Go Momma and a staff member with the National Association of Mothers’ Centers (NAMC) where part of her duties include acting as the primary contributor to Mothers Central – The Parenting Conversations Blog of the NAMC. In her spare time she teaches graphic design to college students (and obsessives about her next vacation to the beach!).