October 6, 2017

Am I a parent standing in a forest?

glimpse of my list - not written in invisible ink, mind you!
Something is happening- or, I guess a better way to put it is that NOTHING is happening.  I mean, I guess this has been the situation for awhile.  Judging by the lack of response I get from my offspring, I fear that I have become invisible.  Perhaps I'm disappearing, but my scale tells me otherwise.  Could it be that only the neighborhood dogs are able to hear my voice?  I doubt it, since my voice is anything but high pitched.  So, I'm left to wonder . . . WHY CAN'T ANYONE HEAR ME?

Of course my issues are limited to my home.  When I am at the grocery store or my workout classes, those around me have no problem interacting with me.  They converse with me and manage not to ignore me.  Interesting.

Am I alone?  Do you also hate being tuned out in your own home?

Over the last 24 hours I feel like things have escalated.  Last night when I left to drive Curly to dancing, I left a list on the kitchen table of a few things I expected the kids to do.  I delivered audible, verbal remarks to accompany said list.  I arrived home and was instantly frustrated.

recycling overflowing - ignored by Ed.
Eddie had NOT taken out the garbage, or put the sheets back on Curly's top bunk.  I wash sheets on Thursdays (OK every other, sue me), so I washed the sheets yesterday.  I made a point to put the sheets back on Mini's bed myself.  When I climb the stairs multiple times a day, Mini's unmade bed is the first thing I see.  I am obviously NOT a neat freak, but I feel like it would take her less than 10 seconds to toss the blankets in the general direction of the pillow.  Instead, what I normally see is a giant tangle of sheets and blankets and quilt in the middle of her bed.

Mini's unmade, but better than normal bed
I have shared a bed with Mini before during a hotel stay, AND on those occasions I have feared for my life.  Knowing that she is a tumultuous sleeper, explains why her bed is always in such disarray.  Still, when I put her sheets on her bed I try to tuck the everything super tight and urge her to stay in the sheets so the morning routine is simple.  Futile effort.

At 9:30 pm after I arrived home from dancing, Eddie had to put the sheets on the top bunk for Curly even though Mini (who has an injured foot at the moment and didn't attend dancing class) was already sleeping in the bottom bunk.

This girl likes her sleep - what can I say?  She is her mother's child.  I typically make her breakfast and prepare her sack lunch for school in order to speed up Sleeping Beauty's morning routine.  Once high school comes, I will officially retire from being Mini's personal assistant.  The point is, how can she not have 10 seconds to toss her blankets across her bed when her other morning tasks are minimal?

This morning she told me her bed was made.  Imagine how annoyed I was when I saw that it wasn't actually made.  I noted that it did look better than most days, but still!  I had to pick her up during lunch for a doctor's appointment for her foot.  I glared at her, 'The bed?  You said you made it.'  She shrugged, 'Oh, yeah, but it didn't look as bad as usual, so I thought that counted.' 

Tank was supposed to unload the remaining Costco shopping boxes like cereal and paper products from the back of the Great White van.  After I hollered at Ed for no sheets, no garbage, I yelled at Tank and ordered him to get up off the couch and unload the van. 

The next morning when Coach left for work, he discovered that the garage door was left up all night and the light was on in the garage.  Way to go, Tank!  Later that afternoon when I opened the cargo doors of the van, I discovered that much of the Costco 'big stuff' that I had asked Tank to unload was still in the car.  SERIOUSLY?! 

Mini was supposed to organize the mud room - truly a tall order.  I've been trying to get kids to commit to what sweatshirts they want to keep in their locker for a few weeks.  In addition to the mud room, I requested that she link kids with hoodies and then get hoodies hung up in lockers. 

I practically tripped over the mounds of sweatshirts -divided into piles- but still on the front hall floor unclaimed.  No one is really utilizing the mudroom right now because the house is under construction and it is off the beaten path, so my front hall looks like a bomb went off.  Always.  Mini did tackle the mudroom.  There was evidence of this by the laundry basket size (oh, she didn't grab an empty laundry basket and fill it - let's not get carried away) pile of discarded clothing in the work-in-progress kitchen.  She had collected socks, boxers, shorts, t-shirts, and every other kind of clothing you can imagine . . . from the mudroom. 

Tank asked me recently if I knew where his t-shirt went from his Washington DC trip.  It could be anywhere.  Literally.  Nothing would surprise me.

I guess I need to hand out more punishments rather than tax my vocal chords any further.  No one is listening and the louder I shout, the more devoted my offspring seem to become at tuning me out.  What is the saying, 'If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?'  Is it just me, or do you feel like, 'If a parent tells a kid to do something but no one bothers to listen, is the parent standing in a forest?'  If that is the case, you don't want to be in the forest with me when my Irish temper kicks in - because I will push a tree down.  The end of my rope has been reached. 

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