“You brought that shit on yourself.”
This is a fundamental truth that can’t be denied. Every behaviour (good or evil) that my kids have ever flirted with over the years, ultimately comes back to something that I did or didn’t do. (Like beat their backsides.)
When my daughter was about 5 or 6 years old, and testing my patience at bedtime with her sassy, finger-waggin’, talkin’-back, grumpy, drama-princess shenanigans, I put her to her room. Of course she wanted to discuss/negotiate the terms of this bedtime confinement, and I was having none of it. The noise from her mouth would just not stop. It was soul-sucking. When finally, at the brink of my despair, I expressed my discontent in a screamo pitch that set off all the car alarms in the neighbourhood.
NOT. ANOTHER. WORD.
A slam of the door, and then sweet, blessed silence. Brilliant silence. Ahh… I had had the last word. I won. I was in control. I almost wanted to rejoice in song. (I may or may not have danced a jig.)
As the minutes of silence continued to stretch out, I had hoped and assumed that she had finally gone to bed. Bent to the will of my awesome parenting, she succumbed to doing as she was told. I smiled triumphantly as I came upstairs and got myself ready for bed—all the while mentally preparing my long-winded acceptance speech for the parent-of-the-year award. It was then that I saw it. A single piece of paper sprawled across my pillow. It conveyed a significant message, but not a word was used.
I brought that shit on myself.