Thursday, August 14, 2008

Warp(ed) Speed.

My oldest was home sick from camp today. Bummer for her, since it was the Camp's American Idol final performance and she made it to the finals. I swear - I can recount all the times when Emily had something important or exciting to do and she gets sick. As if she wills herself a fever, stomach ache or some other boo-boo of epic proportion. (school talent show, carnival, final soccer match, hip hop recital, a friend's birthday party). Unlike most kids, this one gets sick when there is fun shit to do - not when there is a math test or religious services or dentist appointments. She is warped.

So yesterday, she wakes up with unexplainable stomach ailment #42 and I say (yell) "Get up and get out of bed. You are not going to miss today's semi-finals 'cuz I don't want to hear about it for the rest of summer." I slam her breakfast down on the table, get her stuff together for camp and off we go. Two hours later, I get a call from the camp that she threw up. "Chunks?" I ask. Why did I ask that? I don't know...blowing chunks means food stuffs from yesterday and the morning. Liquid bile barf means too much water and juice. I know, I know - t.m.i.
Like it makes a difference in the sick factor, the consistency of the hurl... camp nurse just wants her to go home before she passes it to other kids.

So I go back to get her at camp - feeling like the worst mom in the world for not believing her. But I was a hypochondriac when I was little, so much so that my mom wouldn't believe I had a bloody nose until she saw the stuff gushing...even then - she would peel one ply from a two ply tissue for me to use. I didn't believe her - and a part of me still doesn't. Even when we got home and she slept for, like, 4 hours. Even when she tried to take some tylenol for the fever (that she willed herself) with water and gagged that up moments later. Even when she went to bed at 5:30 p.m. and slept right through til morning. Part of me doesn't believe that she is really sick...she does this as part of a master plan to prove me wrong. I am warped.

Today- she stayed home. We all did. Emily still hasn't eaten much except 1/2 a pbj and some water. She has no fever, and is kinda mellow. I believe her now. Normally she eats like it's nobody's business. So it shouldn't be a total loss, we cleaned out her desk drawers and organized her stuff for school. Rachel just bopped around playing with all the stuff that Big Sissie has found in her room and handed down. I am doing a bit of laundry, tidying up and what not. She was sick. I admit it. She had a fever and slept the better part of Wednesday away. She hasn't mentioned missing the competition which has been all she's talked about all summer.

Why am I so hard on her? I always say with Emily - it's all or nothing. She is either whining about not getting her way or sucking up and an uber kiss ass when she does. Does she act this way because she is 8 and 11/12ths? Is is just like this around here, or are there other 'tweeners with the same issues? She is generally a great kid; smart as a whip, funny, creative, clutzy, a voracious reader, a choca-holic, still on the innocent and clueless side of woman-hood, semi-athletic, daring, not the least bit self-conscious, a great big sister who puts up with her little sister (who's pretty terrific too) more than the average big sister should have to. But she makes me nuts. She's all or nothing Emily.

The other day we went school shopping for supplies and clothes. I spent a fortune on the two girls and Emily is all "oh thank you , mommy" for the rest day, until I ask her to do something like avert her eyes from the bright shiny object (insert t.v., computer, nintendo here), or put her clothes away, or that it's time to take a shower. "Emily now, Emily now, Emily now , EMILY NOW!! "

Why am I writing this today? Because I have been struck with guilt of shittiest kind. The kind that makes you mad and sad at the same time. The kind that gets you wondering if you have any maternal instinct at all. The kind that hits you when you realize that your kids notice all kinds of things about you that you don't think they will.

Actual conversation at dinner last night with just Hubby, Rachel and I (since Emily was sick)

Rachel: "it's so nice at the table tonight and sooo quiet"
Me: "well, babe - sissy is sleeping, so we are trying to keep it down"
Rachel: "no, i mean because you aren't yelling at her"
Me: " I yell at Emily during dinner?"
Rachel: "no, you do all the time."

I am such an ass.


Heather said...

No, you are not an ass. We all yell all the time. I yell all. the. time. In my case, I have a dreamer. She's off in la la land until you yell at her. It's all day, every day.

Don't feel so bad. She sounds like a good kid and you are a terrific mom.

Anonymous said...

lighten up, my friend. though my yelling days are pretty much over, i'm surprised i still have vocal chords from the amount of times i raised my voice.
(and can i just say that my word verification had 'vag' in the middle of it, and i actually conjured up a beavis & butt-head type snigger. what's wrong with me??)

Cristin said...

I yell too.. and have horrible guilt about it. I've told Graham that if I yell too loud (and sometimes I yell loud enough for the Deaf kid to find it loud) he can give me a time out...

We used to say that my mom wouldn't let us stay home from school unless we were bleeding out our eyeballs...

Anonymous said...

Stop beating yourself up, we all yell at our kids, me as much as anyone. Then we all feel guilty, it's just part of being a mom.

And I think deep down you didn't want her to be sick because you didn't want her missing out on the fun, not because you didn't believe her.

Keys to the Magic Travel said...

I am a yeller. Not a loud yeller. But a clench my teeth, veins popping, quite kind of yeller. Sometimes both of my girls frustrate me to no end. And I think that they ask inane questions on purpose. You are not alone in your guilt :-)

Wineplz said...

I yell at my kids all the time. I know I shouldn't, but half the time it's because the oldest isn't paying attention and I can't always physically put myself in his line of site to get his attention visually.

Anonymous said...

pulling up a chair at your dinner table because I do the *exact* same thing with my 13 year old daughter.

deep breath, start over, GO!

Fannie said...

Precious Youngest puked at school last year (high school, btw) and I yelled at her when I picked her up as though she had done it on purpose just to ruin my day. That my friend is TRUE assery.

KatBouska said...

I yell all the time too, but I can totally identify. Mother's guilt is a real bitch...and I'd like to slap her.

Robin said...

Guilty of the mother's guilt. Don't beat yourself up though girl. You're a great mama. We all have our breaking points.

Putting the FUN in DysFUNctional said...

I totally love that you said "Chunks?". LOVE IT!

Britt said...

Ugh, mommy guilt..
I was once my mom's Emily. Always in trouble for some reason. We watch family videos and as my mom listens to herself yell at me she will explain how she was feeling and apologize .. she really didn't know that's how it was. But I still love her, and know she loves me. She's still my best friend. Which is what I remind myself as I raise my girls.

p.s. love the blog, found you off of Lulaville. Thanks for entertaining me throughout my day :o)