Speaking of bratty — (or is it neglected?)June 6, 2012
Next week, Mouse “graduates” from 8th grade. I know, I know, “that’s not a real graduation” [please, read that phrase with a nasty, nasaly, grouchy, crotchety tone of voice]. But you know what? Who cares. This has been her school, her class, our community, since she was in 1st grade. No, she’s not done with school, but we are all closing a huge chapter of our lives. I’m calling it graduation, and I’m celebrating.
Maybe 6 weeks ago, she and I went shopping with one of her closest friends and her mom, who I’m relatively close with. Mouse found the requisite two dresses — one for her school “dinner/dance,” and one for the graduation ceremony itself. Both were way cute. The dinner/dance dress, however, which is strapless, is a little loose in the bust. Even though it has some rubberized stuff at the top of it, it still runs the risk of falling right down her pole-thin body and onto the floor.
About 2 weeks ago, she said, “Mom, we have to get this taken in.” I said, “okay, I will call. But you have to remind me – I get busy at work and I forget until it’s 5:30 and everywhere is closed. When you get home, text me or call me, and I’ll take care of it.”
Well, she got busy. With friends or with homework or with other 8th-grade sorts of things, and I never got a text or a call.
I was talking with a friend today about the graduation plans (because we are organizing decorations and a grade-wide party), and all of a sudden, like a punch in the gut, I remembered that we need to get Mouse’s dress altered. I thought I also remembered her saying that sure, she can go into the seamstress shop by herself ….
So I was chatting with David while eating lunch and mentioned to him that I texted Mouse with instructions to go by the boutique that we used last time at 3:30. I explained to him where exactly it was (basically across the street from her school), and things seemed fine.
But then she got home, and upon realizing I was sending there by herself, went into all-out meltdown mode.
I don’t know – when Lemon was her age, she’d do anything and go anywhere by herself. I had called ahead, she was expected, arrangements were made – what’s the problem? ”I don’t feel comfortable, and I don’t know what to do!” So I’m texting Lemon, and I’m chatting with David, and they’re both in the house with a bit of a tantrum-y Mouse, and everyone is annoyed. Meanwhile, I’m trying to draft a brief for the Third Circuit … and feeling very frustrated.
It really came down to the fact that Mouse didn’t want to go with anyone but me. But she wanted her dress altered. And I couldn’t be there (hello, Third Circuit). And if we didn’t go today, we couldn’t get a guarantee it would be ready in time for the dance.
So she gnashed her terrible teeth and roared her terrible roar, and then said, “fine.” (well, the “fine” didn’t come until after I lectured her about her inflexibility, and explaining that I could not come home to go with her, and that I’m taking off tons of time next week for her graduation and all of the surrounding events, and that she had offers from both David AND Lemon to go with her, and she needed to knock it the F off. Only I didn’t say F or Fuck. I just said, “you need to be more flexible.” I also apologized for not having the chance to talk to her about it/ prep her in advance, but that’s just the way it went, and now she needs to Fing Deal. Only I didn’t say “Fing.” Or Fucking. But I was thinking it!!)
And David took her. He reported that she was a total grouch the entire time, but it was all over with inside of 3 minutes, and they were back home. When she walked back in the door and found multiple 10th graders in the kitchen eating all our food, she completely forgot about the trauma of Seamstress Without Mom, and got lost in hanging out with the older girls.