Mama Doesn’t Want Your Drama (So Don’t Save It For Me)

There are times when I look at my boys playing nicely together and I think, “Awwwww, aren’t they SO cute?”  The last three weeks have been largely void of those moments.  There has been arguing, tattling, screaming, crying and dramatic displays of “injury” inflicted by the other child that any actor (or NBA player hoping to draw a foul) could admire. 

I swear if I hear, “Mommmmmmmmmmy!” shouted in a whiny, fingernails-on-a-chalkboard voice one more time, I’m going to lose it. I want to yell back, “I am not wearing a black and white striped shirt, I don’t have a whistle, and I don’t really care that he hit you after you threw a pair of pants on his head.  You deserved it!”

Instead, I clench my teeth, suppress my scream reflex, ignore that my blood pressure has spiked and attempt to restore some semblance of harmony.  On Friday night, my very mouthy eight-year-old son pushed me over the edge.  I ended up yelling at him, which finally got him to stop talking back to me.  In fact, he quit speaking to me completely, which was just fine with me.

Saturday morning started to look like the same old routine, so we did something different.  We went for a family hike.  (No, we did not leave them in the desert.)  My husband walked with my younger son, and my older son stayed with me.  To keep my older son occupied, we took pictures.  Forty-seven pictures of nature as seen through the eyes of an eight-year-old.  He narrowed the assortment down to seven favorites:

His favorite was this pic of a hummingbird
He also liked this lizard sunning on a rock
I liked the desert flower...he liked what could be hiding in the hole in the rocks
I see flowers...he sees bees
He admired the green against the brown rocks. All I saw was "allergies"
Incentive to stay on the trails
He thought the Saguaro's looked like they watched over the city

There was no whining, arguing or complaining during the hike.  In the car ride home, the kids did not purposely do things to irritate the other.  I don’t know if it was exhaustion from the four-mile hike or the soothing effects of the eighty-degree weather that made them so agreeable, but it gave me a much needed break from the constant fighting.  It was the first time in nearly three weeks that I’d thought I just might survive this being a mom thing.

Thank goodness for drama-free moments. 

Is your life a like a Broadway show or a leisurely stroll?


32 thoughts on “Mama Doesn’t Want Your Drama (So Don’t Save It For Me)

    • jannatwrites March 8, 2011 / 6:51 AM

      Thanks, Duke! We do actually have all of them except Academy. I don’t think I’d need Cabela’s, but I sure was eyeing the the 4-pack of duct tape at Costco on Friday.

      (Kidding, of course….just thought I’d add that in case someone actually took me seriously ;))

  1. Tim Weaver March 7, 2011 / 7:47 AM

    There’s a saying among dog owners: “Tired puppies/dogs are good puppies/dogs.”


    • jannatwrites March 8, 2011 / 6:53 AM

      I’ve heard that saying, Tim. And it is very true!

      There’s a saying among parent: “stick with dogs.”
      Again, kidding 🙂

      • Tim Weaver March 8, 2011 / 12:50 PM

        “stick with dogs.”

        You may have been kidding, but I’m not. 🙂

        My opinion is that those folks who say “but it’s different when they’re YOUR kids” are merely trying to continue the Ponzi scheme by getting new recruits to have hatchlings. In this way, they don’t feel as bad about being suckered into having kids by believing that line.

        But I’m just kidding…right? 🙂

        • jannatwrites March 8, 2011 / 7:42 PM

          The ponzi scheme is an interesting (funny) idea, but it IS different when the kids are your own. At least there are good times, so the memories of that can get me through the rough days 🙂

  2. Debbie March 7, 2011 / 7:47 AM

    I’ve always admired moms of more than one child — how do they ever do it?! Looks like you did this one nicely, and your son is well on his way to an interesting hobby (or even a career!) It’s amazing what you can see through the eyes of a child!

    • jannatwrites March 8, 2011 / 6:55 AM

      I’ve always looked at moms with three or more children with a sense of awe (and gratefulness that it isn’t me.) This day did turn out okay and we’ve had a couple of good days since then. Crossing my fingers 🙂 Thanks for visiting, Debbie!

  3. Tori Nelson March 7, 2011 / 8:21 AM

    As I sit in my living room surrounded by 3 toddlers having a “kick party”, I am sending you major props for your giant job as Mom of More. Glad you got a moment to breathe and recharge 🙂

    • jannatwrites March 8, 2011 / 6:57 AM

      Three toddlers….I just got a shiver as I read that. Three toddlers is much more than three children of any other age (in my opinion.) They’re old enough to get into lots of trouble quickly, but too young to listen to reason.

      Thanks for your support, Tori. The recharge helped…I haven’t been frustrated since then (but my legs still hurt from the hike!)

  4. 2blu2btru March 7, 2011 / 8:27 AM

    Again I say, thank goodness I’m not blessed to be a mother just yet. I so need more patience than I have. Somehow, between the people I work for and my parents, my life still manages to be a broadway production without the children. It’s truly amazing.

    • jannatwrites March 8, 2011 / 6:59 AM

      I don’t have enough patience either, 2blu. By the time I get some patience, I’ll probably be past child-bearing years 🙂

      It does sound like you have a full life (especially with your dad’s editing project). Hang in there and have fun!

  5. SAS Fiction Girl March 7, 2011 / 10:31 AM

    You know how working-breed or sporting dogs get wild and destructive if they’re not given a “job” to do? Maybe some kids are like that, too. 🙂
    I have four brothers, and there were times they fought so hard, I thought I’d have to call the police. The only funny part was seeing the younger ones grow up to overpower the older ones. Luckily, they get along much better these days.

    • jannatwrites March 8, 2011 / 7:02 AM

      That’s funny, Jen. My kids are very much like sporting dogs (but they don’t fetch as well.)

      FOUR BROTHERS? Wow! I do hope you had at least one sister to help balance the testosterone. I’m glad to find that they get along better. I’ve heard stories of brothers who never worked it out – and the prospect of a lifetime of this scares me 🙂 Thanks for sharing – it gives me hope!

  6. nrhatch March 7, 2011 / 12:25 PM

    Excellent post . . . and wonderful photos.

    Me (age 3): “Jamie’s gonna hit me. Jamie’s gonna hit me.”
    Mom (age 30, with 4 kids ~ 5, 3, 1, and newborn): “Well, hit him back.”

    • jannatwrites March 8, 2011 / 7:05 AM

      I’m happy you enjoyed the post, Nancy!

      I’ve thought about just telling them to fight it out, but I’m afraid the younger one might get too rough (he’s a bit of a scrapper.) May teach my older one a lesson though 😉

  7. Carol Ann Hoel March 7, 2011 / 2:41 PM

    My life is more like a leisure stroll than a Broadway show, but I have a sweet, patient husband, and my children are grown and raising my grandchildren.

    My mother had a sense of humor. I’d do something to really irritate her, and instead of losing her temper, she’d ask me if I planned to have children. I’d say yes. She’d say that was a good thing, because I’d get what was coming to me then. She was right.

    I think your son took really good photos. They are beautiful! Now you know how to have peace and quiet. Just spend an entire day devoting all your attention to your children. It works. Duh. It’s impossible to keep it up everyday, but it works. Blessings to you…

    • jannatwrites March 8, 2011 / 7:48 AM

      Gotta love the ‘just wait until you have kids’ threat. I think the recognition of your blessings brings peace.

      Between reading, homework, grocery shopping, cleaning, etc., there’s so much to do, it can get difficult to show each child one-on-one attention that’s not goal-based (my older son needs this – I think he’s jealous of his brother) but we do what we can. And then we hope it’s enough to get us by until we can find time to do it again 🙂

      Thanks for your visiting and sharing your thoughts, Carol!

  8. pattyabr March 7, 2011 / 7:39 PM

    that is why I took my kids and specifically my son, to the park to roller blade – to exhaust him. It all changes when they hit high school. They become people you don’t recognize anymore. Hormones cause drama for girls and boys. Hormones cause jealousy, envy, irrationality, all the crazy stuff.

    • jannatwrites March 8, 2011 / 7:50 AM

      Ah, the teen years. Not looking forward to those, but I’m guessing the years before may prepare me somewhat for it. I agree, we do have to let them burn off some energy (I wish I could somehow transfer it to me.)

      Thanks for stopping by, Patty!

  9. Aligaeta March 8, 2011 / 8:54 AM

    The hike in the desert seemed the perfect interruption to their disputing ways. Like you, I found positive family time reminds them of how they are suppose to behave with one another – civil. And when your at home with them, I would use candles to signify the period of tranquility.

    Another break to the insanity, came by taking turns reading a classic chapter book, sometimes you are engaging only one child doing this but it does break the fighting and the other can occupy themselves with a project or the Big One can get his homework done.

    Lovely photos!

    • jannatwrites March 8, 2011 / 7:38 PM

      Interestingly, they are usually well-behaved when separate…put them together and it’s fight city. If I’m spending time with one, then other misbehaves to get attention. (Just this afternoon, my younger one had melt-down when he had to wait twenty minutes for me to finish listening to my older son read to me. Once I was done, I worked with him on his homework.) Good news is that when I read stories out loud, I can often keep both of them engaged for about ten minutes.

      Thanks for your suggestions on keeping peace, Aligaeta. I do like the idea of tranquility candles.

      P.S. I’m glad you liked the pictures.

  10. J. P. Cabit March 8, 2011 / 6:42 PM

    Mommy: 1
    Child: 0
    Kids can be sweet, cute little angelic beings from planet nice-nice. They can also be little terrors. But I’m sure you still love them either way, which is the important part. 😀 (unless, of course, you were just joking when you said that you were just kidding a few comments ago…gasp…! No, I’m just kidding…:D)

    • jannatwrites March 8, 2011 / 7:49 PM

      Ooh, I scored a point??? I thought I was way behind in the game!

      I do still love my boys, even on the frustrating days. (I can write that easily because we’ve had mostly good days since Saturday.) I’m enjoying every moment because I don’t know how long it will last 😉

  11. SuziCate March 9, 2011 / 6:51 AM

    through the eyes of a child, I love it!

    • jannatwrites March 9, 2011 / 8:33 PM

      I’m happy you enjoyed the post, SuziCate!

  12. Shafali March 10, 2011 / 5:42 AM

    An interesting observation. Being a mother is tough…being a mom who never loses her cool, is impossible.

    I found my way to your blog through Barb’s – I enjoyed reading your guest-post at her blog and wanted to visit:)


    • jannatwrites March 10, 2011 / 8:50 PM

      I’m glad you stopped by, Shafali! It’s nice to find that you enjoyed the guest post – I had fun writing it. (Well, I always have fun writing!)

      Thanks for affirming that it’s normal to break down once in a while. I tend to set standards for myself that are unrealistic.

  13. Kavita March 10, 2011 / 8:07 PM

    I am noting this down, Janna.. some day, when I land in this *situation*, I’ll know what to do.. a hike sounds like a lotta fun! 🙂
    And the sight thru’ the eyes of an 8 year old – awwwww…SWEEEET!! I wanna get back there..
    Pssstt.. Do you know of a way I can turn back time? Just for a bit maybe? 🙂

    Alrightie.. here’s my way of showing how much I enjoy reading your posts – be it the Kharma series.. or anything you write.. I have a Versatile Blogger award waiting for you HERE
    Enjoy..and keep writing, J!!!
    Loadsa love! 🙂

    • jannatwrites March 10, 2011 / 8:55 PM

      Going back in time would be a nice trick. It’s funny, when I was eight, all I could think about was growing up. Now I want to grow young 🙂

      Thank you so much for your sweet comments – I’m glad that you enjoyed Kharma’s Way and still continue to read my posts. I do appreciate your stopping by. Thanks for the award – I’m honored that you thought of me!

  14. 36x37 March 10, 2011 / 11:00 PM

    Wonderful! You reminded me of what the experts always say, but that I can never remember in the middle of my boys’ daily disagreements: distract or change the scenery. I’m glad this worked for you.

    Your older son is quite the budding photographer!

    Great post!

    • jannatwrites March 10, 2011 / 11:25 PM

      Many times I’m not able to change the scenery, so the day goes downhill – FAST! We lucked out that we had time to do a hike (and that it actually halted the downward spiral.)

      I’m glad you enjoyed the post, 36×37. Thanks for stopping by!

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