Thursday, May 19, 2011

Selective Hearing

Forget privacy or relief from bladder pressure. I'm never going to the bathroom again.

After an entire day of increasingly bad behavior and increasingly selective hearing on Michael's part, (apparently "Don't hurt the babies!" sounds a lot like "Find every way possible to hurt the babies." And "Don't make any more messes!" is easily interpreted as "Dump out your entire dresser.") I excused myself to use the restroom.

This is a small fraction of the disaster I found spread over my entire (recently mopped) kitchen floor when I emerged from the bathroom a mere two minutes later:


As soon as I came out of the bathroom and saw the Great Milk Incident of 2011, Michael high-tailed it out of the room. When I found him hiding behind the rocking chair he adopted a look of angelic innocence and declared, "Matthew and Leah did it!"

"I know Matthew and Leah did not do this by themselves, Michael. What were you doing?"

Just short of threatening to shine a bright light into his eyes, he cracked. "I was spitting the milk," he said. When I told him to go to his room he complained, "But Mom, Matthew and Leah thought it was funny!" They did, apparently, (I'd heard them laughing for a bit before the giggles turned to wails) until he started spitting on them, as his abstract art project was not just limited to the floor - both babies had been given a head-to-toe dairy bath.

After a lengthy time-out (The 57th of the day) I handed him a towel and said, "Get mopping." Then I plopped the babies in the bathtub. Ten minutes later, Michael came into the bathroom to declare his task finished, and I left him in charge of the babies for twenty seconds so I could do a quick survey of his work. When I returned to the bathroom, the lid was removed from the shampoo bottle and the whole thing had been emptied into the bathtub. Michael was actively spitting in Leah's hair.

His behavior kept escalating throughout the day until he had racked up such an extensive list of punishments that I'm not sure I'll be able to keep track of them all. He refused to eat his dinner. He slammed a cupboard door as hard as he could while Matthew's arm was in it. He walked by my pile of folded laundry and kicked over the stack of towels.

I was about three seconds from strangling him when, as David was cutting up a pre-bedtime pear for the babies, he sauntered over to the kitchen and in a contrite voice, said, "Mom, can I repent?"

I melted. "Oh, honey, of course you can repent!" I said, thoughts of hugs and bonding and forgiveness dancing through my head.

His voice changed to one of angry frustration: "NO, MOM! I didn't say 'repent!' I said 'Can I have some pear!'"

Sigh. I guess selective hearing runs in the family.


mathmom said...

Is it bad if I am laughing right now? What a day. I think something is in the air. Melissa is acting up a lot too. And, she can't be nice to Lily for more that 2 seconds.

Suzanne Lucas said...

I laughed so hard I had tears streaming down my face. I read it out loud to Sarah as well. She thought it was hilarious.

Stephanie Black said...

I love your variation on Mom's "take a picture instead of killing him"--"write a blog instead of killing him." You'll have a great time showing Michael these blogs when he's older (and his son has just finished destroying the house and you get to laugh fiendishly).

Alison said...

Oh this hits so close to home for me!! I love the way you can keep your cool even amidst all the chaos.

Dr. Mom said...

Completely unrelated to this post, but I won't be able to watch Michael and the twins so you and David can have a date on Saturday. Sorry!



Cameron and Nonie said...

Let's lock our little boys in a padded room for the next 10 years so that we can stay sane. Will it ever quit raining so they can release their energy outside where things grow back? Good luck darling.

fiona said...

Oh my goodness! The picture of the twins!! Haaahaaha! I know I'm behind on all this, but wow. I'm glad you documented it!