All three of my girls are different from one another.
They look different and they all have drastically different personalities.
Their reactions are vastly different.
Take for instance a simple remark made at separate occasions
to Happy Mouth (who will be receiving a new alias soon),
Laid Back Jane and Forrest.
Something as simple as " Have you finished your chores?'
can be met will a spectrum of (over)reactions.
accompanied by an eye roll.
But this doesn't happen too often
since eye roll=hard labor.
Really any body language offense will land you in the pool of
"Mom's least favorite chores are now yours."
One year Happy Mouth was unable to control herself so much that
I had the cleanest kitchen on the Eastern Shore; all the way down to the grout.
Seriously it was bad.
Friends would call and ask me to send her their way
when she met her quota at my house .
Other times a reaction of "Yes ma'am" comes and not only was respect shown
but the chore was actually done well.
These are fun ,fun, times .
Rare but fun.
Then there is the high octane estrogen response.
It goes something like this:
"Uggh" (no eye roll here because they are shut tight)
" I can' t believe all you care about is chores, when my entire existence is at stake.
I mean my whole life is about to implode!! And do you care at all?'
Now over the years I have learned that this response is designed to distract.
And while I have fallen for it before ,
my years of training have now made me a Master Rebound Reactor.
I know just respond to this drama with a cool
" You are fine and unless you would actually like me to rip
your world apart by the seams I suggest you get your tail in motion ."
They usually just stare at me
like I am the most compassion-less human
that ever existed , and do their chores.
I' m good with that.
So when I say something that really is fun and good news
that I think should have a typical reaction of oh.....
I don't know say --JOY
and am met
with a schizophrenia of reactions,
I am once again
reminded that parenting is not for the weak.
Me: "Girls let's check out early today and take your Daddy to lunch
. Won't that be fun"
Happy Mouth(age 15) " Why do we have to check out?
Let's take the whole day and go shopping ...um..
for Dad, I mean."
Her eyes are in backpedaling mode at this point
Laid Back Jane (Formerly Rollercoaster at this age of 12):
" I can't check out. Do you know how much homework I will have?
We are reading and taking a quiz on Despereaux today!!
What are you thinking?"
The look of horror on her face is equivalent to that of watching a kitten being beaten.
Forrest (8): " I bet Dad wants us to bring Sissy and my turtle too."
She has a gum drop stuck to the front of her jumper
and I swear I saw her backpack move just a little.
Then the three of them start talking all at once,
each of their own dialogue
and slowly my mind
just hears the teacher from The Peanuts cartoon:
"Wha -wha wha"
Finally I am drawn back to reality as they are all saying "Mama"
ME: "Yes well okay ,"
"I think today your dad has a lot to do
so just finish up your lunches because you are going to school today"
Happy Mouth: "Great way to go!" )
(pointing at Rollercoaster) Now we gotta go to school!"
Rollercoaster: "YES!!!!" (multiple fist pumps)
Forrest: (She already has the dog on a leash)
" Okay , Sissy and I are ready!"
Everyone went to school .
I, however , went to lunch with Mr. Rodgers.
It was Joyful indeed!!