So my first kid, she's pretty great.

My second kid is quite OK, too. But that first one, she and I are an interesting team. I have a lot to learn in this earthly plane. And this one has a lot to teach me.

Last weekend was a 10 year-old's Shangri-La. Two birthday parties, photo session and a pedicure for her "graduation" (called "promotion" officially at the tiny school on our mountain).

First birthday party was a scavenger hunt at the mall. With cash and prizes. Second party was at the Fairmont. With swimming in the hotel and dinner at the fancy restaurant. (I'm going to interject here that I have never stayed at the Fairmont or eaten at said fancy restaurant, myself.)

Then the photo sessions. Two of them. For her dance classes.

Then off to the pedicure at the fancy new nail joint in town. Hers are purple with tropical flowers. Mine are pink-red. Wonderful by any standard.

When we got home she decided to bust out a Christmas gift that she hadn't touched since Christmas day. Because she needed to do something fun, I guess. Because life bores you when there aren't photographers standing by and teams of your friends swarming around you for extravagant fun every hour of the day.

When she started tearing the desk apart looking for the packaging from the gift we started arguing. And talking in circles. And I was trying to make her understand that when a package is opened in December, it is reasonable to assume that the packaging will be recycled some time before June. She was informing me that there was VERY important info on that packaging, and SOMEONE had better pony-up said packaging, or there was gonna be trouble.

I finally got fed up and said, "Look, just because you've had a weekend full of fabulous-ness doesn't mean you get to treat me like crap!"

This is where it gets ugly. Because I said "crap." And in my kid's eyes "crap" is a SERIOUS cuss word. SERIOUS. Seriously.

So she told me that I embarrass her sometimes. And other mom's don't cuss at their kids. And that she thinks that she is a better person than me.

What is a cussing addict to do?

I sent her to her room. Duh.

While she was in her room I invited her to be a little grateful for what she had and maybe even a little thankful for all that she is given every day.

And she cried. She felt bad. And she wrote me a lovely letter. Two pages about what a great mom I am and how I have always put her brother and her first, how she wants to be more like me and think about other people more than she currently does. Which, from my perspective, can't be all that hard.

So when we had a chance we talked. And I let her know that, sadly, she was stuck with me for a mom. But the good news was that she gets to know that her mom is a whole person. Not a Barbie, not a paper doll, but a flawed, imperfect, whole mommy/wife/daughter/friend. That what I want most in the world is not to to hand out guarantees that I will behave perfectly in each and every situation that I encounter, but rather that no matter where I go and what I do I will be loving her. And I will be her life long cheerleader no matter what. Even if she tells me that I suck and that she hates me. Even if she thinks that I am the most embarrassing person on the face of the Earth. Even if she wants to move away from me and never look back. I will love her. She will be in my heart and wherever I am she will have a safe place to come home to.

Even if I'm smoking and cussing and singing show tunes off-key while wearing fluffy slippers and a turquoise robe over my clothes.

Especially then.

1 comment:

Tammy said...

And when my daughters are older...and they hate me and think that I am embarrasing. Can I please have you on speed dial? You are an inspiration to this mom.