Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Fall evening

I am unsure when Charlotte, my 7 year old, went from thinking I was the bees knees, to thinking she knows way more than I do. It has been a slow progression. One that, most days, it seems I was unaware of, but suddenly has become quite apparent. Blue eyes so painfully gorgeous are now rolled in my direction, constantly.

I had visions of being "that mom" when I was a kid. The cool, laid back mom, that all of my friends liked. The mom that was a friend more that a parent. The mom who said yes, provided junk food, and let you go outside without a jacket. I was determined to be that mom.

And then I became a mom. I quickly realized that never would I be my kids friend. They would have a ton of them. I choose to be mom. Maybe, one day when they are older, and have gotten through all of the hurdles they have laid out before them, and have families of their own, we will become friends. Until that time, I will be mom, and do my best to guide them into being successful, happy, productive people. I will not be the cool mom that their friends like, because I remember that mom. She let us smoke in her house when we were teenagers. She looked the other way of who was coming in and out of her house. I loved that mom! Hence..I will never be her.

Even when the girls are begging, they are required to wear proper outerwear. I recall wearing an awful hat on my head as a child. It was shaped like a marshmallow. And it was made out of faux fur. Two giant pom poms hung from ribbons that tied it below my chin. Awful, awful, awful. My mom made me put that thing on as soon as the first leaf turned orange. I felt like the royal guards, outside of Buckingham Palace. It was that tall.

OK, maybe I wouldn't victimize my girls to that extent, but my point is, hats, gloves, coats, are a must. I have done this for years now, as the weather changes, as most responsible parents do. Olivia never really argues. A few huffs and puffs, but she relents. Always. Charlotte however...holy moly. I have to hand it to her. She is stubborn and will stand her ground until it gets to the point of tears, and punishment. She will never take the easy way, and just put the stuff on, and be done with it. She will choose the route of protest. Last night, she wound up in bed at 7:15, howling and weeping away, all because she refused to listen to me. When she heard her sisters were watching repeats of Full House, it took a turn for the worse.

I looked at her in the eyes this morning, as we waited quietly for her bus. I said the same words to her, as I do most mornings. She can't explain why she fights with me. She feels remorseful, always, but she said that she thinks that sometimes, I am wrong, and she is right, and she just won't believe otherwise.

Seven. She is seven. And I suppose, I just don't want to break her of that. Fearlessly standing her ground, despite not getting what she wants, just to prove her point. Taking her punishment, but believing she is right. And really, yesterday after school wasn't all that cold. My insisting on the coat may have been overkill. A sweatshirt might have sufficed.

Maybe meeting halfway is something to be explored.

1 comment:

  1. eh.. I'm not always a fan of "dr" phil, but a million years ago, he said this (regarding parenting), "do your best not to get into a confrontation and/or fight with your children, but when you do, DONT lose!!!" to this day, i think it might be the best parenting advice ever. in the words of 80's marketing exec's, "never let'em see you sweat!"