"R-e-s-p-e-c-t: find out what it means to me..." ~ Aretha Franklin
I don't know about your house, but in my house we have an "issue". And, since my husband was so good about being the subject of my last post by allowing himself to be exposed as a less-than-stellar parent, I thought I'd come clean this time around. The "issue" I speak of is this...my children don't listen to me. Yes, it's true. There are times when I would have a better chance getting a brick wall to respond than to get my own flesh and blood to cooperate. Although, I recall as I write this, my own mother had the same problem when we were kids. I can remember that poor woman yelling until she was blue in the face (or is that red?) and we'd ignore her. On the other hand, if my dad even looked at me the wrong way, I immediately produced a puddle of tears. What was up with that?!
Why do dads have this incredible power over kids? Not that dads aren't seriously valuable, as I have previously stated, but I am the one who (90% of the time...) feeds, chauffeurs, picks up their crap, takes care of them when they are sick or injured, saves their butt when they forget to bring something to school ("oh please mom, I PROMISE it won't ever happen again"...), and proofs their homework or essays.
You'd think in return for all of that hard work and sacrifice I could get say...a bed made without a litany of complaint or excuse, or a stinky sock in the dirty laundry basket instead of on the kitchen table for the hundredth time, or a daughter who would eat her dinner without doing 10 cartwheels in between each bite (and trust me she isn't doing them because the food tastes so good), or, God-forbid, a dog walked without threatening to take her on a one-way trip to the local humane society (I am referring to the dog, not the kid).
What does a mom have to do to get some respect?! I contemplated testosterone injections to lower my voice, but decided the side effects might wreak havoc on my marriage. At this point, I don't question my compulsion to workout six times a week and have a glass of chardonnay at night before turning in...that's the way I've kept my sanity (not to mention my sense of humor) for the past quarter century.
All I can say is when the day comes (God-willing and by their own choosing), my kids have offspring of their own who drive them to the brink, it will be at that moment they look back on their youth and say as I am:
Mom, I am truly sorry I didn't recognize how much you did for us each day. Please, please forgive me.
(Maybe this is the way to eradicate that curse she put on me so many years ago...).