It was a blood-curdling cry from the bowels of the house...something I'm used to, what with two boys whose idea of torture is only being allowed 25 minutes of Wii instead of an hour of unbridled video bliss.
These days, in my pregnant state, my various and sundry dependents are hard-pressed to get much of a rise out of me unless they are either actively, and profusely, bleeding from the head, or they have, in hand, and ready for consumption, a chocolate truffle - and then only if it's a dark chocolate truffle. If either one of those situations is the case, I have a capacity to move that belies the enormity of my tummy and ass right now.
Upon finding me in the kitchen, stuffing my face with crackers, or cheese, or some other snack, as is often the case, Dash came to a full halt stop, his little indignant self framed by the doorway.
He put his hands on his hips, his face screwed up into a picture of utter outrage.
"Luca came in to the bathroom...and and and...he stood really close and then he put his face right in front of mine, like really close....and then HE BREATHED ON ME AND HIS BREATH STIIIINKKSSS!!!!! AND I DIDN'T LIKE THAT!!!"
The offender, who had, at that point, meandered up behind his little brother in order to offer something resembling a defense, looked at me, wide-eyed, as if to suggest his crime was akin to that of a jay-walker.
"What?!? It's not a big deeeeaaaalllll!!! He's so sensitive!!!"
With those last few syllables, I got enough of a whiff of the un-brushed, un-mouthwashed invisible sludge that emanated from Luca's mouth, and had the inclination to make a citizen's arrest of my own son.
Since that wouldn't solve the problem, however, I quickly told Luca to go avail himself of this really amazing technology called the toothbrush, told Dash his brother would suffer Karmic retribution for his sins, and went back to eating my snack, happy to have solved another family crisis.
I am not now, nor have I ever been, that Most 'Mazin' Mommy. You know the one: Patient, Always Prepared, Tolerant, Organized, Punctual, 'Mazin' Mommy.
I'm okay with this. I have no illusions of grandeur when it comes to being Perfect and Sweet. I don't even have illusions of mediocrity. I figure those kinds of Mommies exist, and I'm really happy for them and their kids. I wish them godspeed on their (perfectly pruned and well-tended) garden path.
My kids and I live on a different planet. One might even venture to say we make our home in a different universe all together. Of course, you'd be wise to check my mood before you suggest such a thing; but on a good day, when the moon is waxing and the wind is right, I might happily agree with you.
The problem, I've discovered, is that I don't particularly enjoy that most basic of parenting duties: saying things over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over...
Sorry, forgot I was in the middle of making a point.
So that part of a parent's day - the one where you say the same thing over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over...
Shit, I can't even get past that word. Okay, that thing parents have to do, where they verbally duplicate the sentence they just spoke five minutes prior because the little person to whom the sentence was directed has, oh, IGNORED said parent, and decided that instead of brushing their teeth, it's time to find the missing Lego piece that will complete the Space Police Shuttle...well, I'm not very good at verbally duplicating my sentences AND keeping my voice at the same timbre and decibel level. Failure to multitask or malnourished sense of patience? Both?
A week ago, I would have given the finger to anyone trying to change my approach. And defriended them on Facebook. In my gestational craziness, I might even have struck that person.
But the other day, on a particularly, umm, Mean Mommy Morning, I was sitting down to some lunch with the boys after hollering (screaming like a knocked-up, unstable banshee) my way through a round of toy pick-up, and thought I would take a moment to debrief with them. Perhaps brainstorm some ways we could help one another. Make them understand how utterly - and I mean this in the nicest possible way - MIND-NUMBINGLY AGGRAVATINGLY CRAZY-MAKING it is when I have to verbally duplicate my sentences over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over -
I might have to just eliminate that word from my vocabulary.
Anyhoo - I was trying to create one of those Teachable Moments that the Most 'Mazin' Mommies have, like, everyday of their motherhood and in which the children invariably learn some valuable and lifelong lesson about How to Be a Better Human Being.
I should have known better. Since as I said before, my kids and I live in a different universe.
Cuz Luca, in all his eight-year-old, smarty-pants wisdom, asked the simplest of things of me:
"Mamãe, could you be a little less screamy? 'Cause that would help, I think."