Mum's the Word

Momming and Monologuing

By Jen Reekie
Posted: Sep. 12, 2018 12:01 am

Another child is walking away while I'm speaking to them while another can't remember what I said five minutes ago because they weren't listening. Come on people!

I only have so much energy. I suppose it sends conflicting messages to the children that some days I care what they look like and others I don't, or so it seems. The truth is I care all the time. I only have the strength to go to bat on certain days. While trying to decide what the love and logic response for a child that refuses to change out of a top that is so low cut I can see their nipple, I'm fighting the urge to hold them down and wrestle them into the fleece they claims "makes them look like an idiot." What's the opposite of arguing? How am I going to discipline this?

I decide with a light grounding of after school outfit arranging and putting all clothes away. (I'm still considering the fleece though.)

Deep down, I'm scared this is really a punishment for myself, as with all punishments, I will have to oversee.

Anyways, the kids are all suffering from the back-to-school blues or whatever it is that is making them hateful. While they are not actually sad, they are tired and finding their new schedules a little stressful. I understand that, am trying to give them the space they need after school and really trying to get them to bed early, although that is only 50 percent for them. We are having a multitude of problems that range from back-talking, laziness and thinking that I'm responsible for everything wrong in the world.

Don't worry, I've got a pep talk for that. Before I start I will take a deep breath and not say the first few words that come to mind.

Your homework is your responsibility to do. I will ask about it. I will ask you to do it. But in the end, you must pull it out of your flipping bag and sit down and do it. I ask you to clean your backpack everyday, yet here I am trying to find something you lost pulling out wadded up papers from days ago. I don't care if it's the equivalent of spam, get rid of it, put it in the sparkily folder you threw a fit over in Walmart or turn it in. If your teacher asks you to read 20 minutes a day, do it. If I remind you and you don't do it, don't expect me to sign your paper saying you did it. I'm not a liar, and you need to deal with the consequences. Maybe you can learn to talk your way out of sticky situations.

If you want to take your lunch, then wake up early enough to get dressed, do your hair and have breakfast. As some of you were up by 6 a.m., you have had ample time to complete these things. It's not my fault you chose to build a fort, play on your iPad and wear opaque tights as pants. Also, when packing your lunch, next time consider more than just pickles, Go-Gurt and goldfish. That just makes me look bad.

Keep your cubby clean. You'll be asked to at school so let's start here. You are lucky enough to have a space to put your things. Hang up your jacket and backpack. All of your stuff is there. If you need something, it should be there. I'm not responsible for your lost articles or things you need ASAP that you have not informed me of. When I think about all the things I pulled out of our swimming pools lost and found, I shudder to think how much of our stuff is floating around out in the real world. Be responsible for yourself and your things.

You need to respect me and what I have to say. You can do that by listing and not arguing. Wearing appropriate clothes means respecting yourself. I demand both. Ya, I'm the worst, go ahead and roll your eyes.

Lastly, I see you are walking away from me as I speak. That's rude. Now I'm not sure you've heard a word I've said so, I will begin again.

And while I'm speaking, go ahead and empty your backpack, grab your homework, lunch, appropriate footwear and march your sweet little backside to the van like you know what time it is!