I learned several years ago that the start of a new school year never goes smoothly. As Scott's schedule is being constantly manipulated, students are being added to his already burgeoning roster and his classroom is being moved, my best course of action is to offer support with no demands. He gets a "get out of chores free" pass for the week, and I try to lay low. Robby has apparently not learned this important lesson.
Robby Rotten has made an unwelcome return. He has been obstinate, defiant and needy. His Daddy returning to work after a long summer break has affected his behavior and his mood. When he isn't demanding something, he is right next to me to "help." Yesterday I insisted on privacy in the bathroom. He stood on the other side of the door, crying that he just "wanted to help and hand me the toilet paper." Needless to say, the past few days have been putting my mommy patience to the test, and I'm not sure I'm passing!
Yesterday morning I woke up to find Robby crawling into my bed. It was early, but not so early that I could get him back to sleep. I turned on a cartoon and got up to get some coffee to jump-start my day.
Problem: I couldn't find my leg. Robby's giggles revealed that he had been awake a few minutes longer than I realized. Asking, "Where did you put Mommy's leg" always seems odd.
My stern tone must have been an indication that I was not in the mood to play. He finally relented and retrieved my leg which was hidden the closet. When I asked him why he took my leg, he explained that he "does not like that leg because Mommy can't run." Having to lecture my four year old as to why he must never move Mommy's leg is not a great way to start the morning especially before my coffee!
Through the course of the day Robby threw multiple temper tantrums, the largest (and most embarrassing) being at the Animal Park. He became angry because I refused to buy him a bottle of water. Not that I need to justify my decision, but the Animal Park charges $2 for a bottle of water, and we had a case in the car. He screamed so loudly that the animals began to squeal. By the time I got him out of the gates, there was a chorus of snorts, moos and squawks bellowing behind us.
He screamed about my refusing to purchase water for the entire drive home. I simply turned up the Dixie Chicks CD and sang along. He then began to holler that my singing "hurt his heart" and that I needed to be quiet. I sang so loud that my throat now hurts.
We came home and I went about making dinner. I checked in on Robby and he was busy dancing to his Christmas music box. Finally, I thought, the house is quiet and I am actually getting something done.
I was premature in my optimism. I heard a crashing sound and went running into the bedroom. My beautiful Galilean Thermometer was smashed all over the bedroom floor. The glass was nearly impossible to get out of our lightly colored carpets, and the liquid inside the thermometer was greasy and smelly. I spent the next 45 minutes cleaning up the remnants of my prized thermometer.
Robby did not mean to break the thermometer. From what I gather, he was dancing and bumped into the dresser. The thermometer somehow got jostled and fell to the ground. It was not malicious, but it certainly didn't make my day any easier.
Scott came home from work ready to vent and complain about his day. He took one look at me and gave me a hug. He knew, just by looking at me, that a day of caring for Robby Rotten had taken its toll. It was obvious that a day caring for Robby Rotten was more labor intensive and frustrating than a school full of hormonal teenagers.