All these last couple of weeks, the boys have had school projects to do.
We've been nagging Nolan to do his pop-up book report, looking for information online for Ben's rainforest animal (caiman) report, and trying to get Ryan's zoo animal (orangutan) report squared away.
I am just trying to keep track of their progress (well, except for Ryan's, because I'll need to help him out anyway) and make sure they get done. This can be immensely frustrating, because you know they're gonna insist it's getting done, and you want to believe them, but that sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach tells you otherwise.
Monday, I had a meltdown of Mommy proportions. Nolan was working on his report...great. Dad was helping him...even better. Ben was flitting around...not good. "Hey. Dude. What/where are you at on your report?" "Uhm, didn't you sign that thingie in my backpack?"
Before I go on, I need to mention that although their father was home, I'd had about a zillion "Mom." "Mommy." "Hey, Mom" "Get Audrey" and bickering "Stop it." "Mom" "Leave me alone" "I'm telling" comments floating around. The two hours that had passed since school let out had felt like an entire day. Considering Audrey's constant soundtrack and the other things I was doing at the time, I was pretty much done at the point when Ben said "signed" and "thingie." He is notorious for bringing me home huge stacks of paper that appear to have nothing I need in them, but hidden within, have some important must-see document that needs my signature, attention, or both. And he will invariably ask for it right after I throw out the trash, when no amount of "it's just a little spill" will salvage it.
I lost it. "No, I did not see any 'thingie' and I signed nothing...that last stack of paperwork had just old worksheets in it...I'm DONE with you, Ben, go to your room."
And Mr W, in his infinite wisdom (read: irritation that I was in a bad mood--) turned around and told me "Go. Get out. Go run your errands." Hiss.
Which not only annoyed me more, but made me feel guilty, too. What, Mom's not allowed to be a bit pushed to the limit now and then? Grr.
So on the way to collect my shoes, Ben comes up to me with said paper, which he had retrieved from his backpack. I read and signed. And apologized for getting mad at him when it was kinda my fault. See, he had it in his backpack, and I had asked him to put it away before I looked in it. My bad. It's just that while I used to be good at going through them right away, now I'm a little lazier, esp now that we've been at it so long this year. And if I don't make them put their things away right when we walk in, then I have a pile of backpacks and school paraphenalia on the table until dinner. No way you can look at that clutter and not grit your teeth!
I think next time, I'll just take a deep breath.
Before I steady my aim and fire.