This is me, on a full scale verbal rampage, after the sixth straight hour of a recent “vacation” day that consisted primarily of listening to my twin boys scream, yell, bicker, squabble, tease, taunt and push each other's buttons with the skill of an old fashioned elevator operator:
I do not want you two in the same room!
Do not talk to each other!
Do not touch each other!
Do not LOOK AT EACH OTHER!
I MEAN IT!
Get in your rooms right now and SHUT THE DOORS!
Do not open them until I TELL YOU!
AND NO KNOCKING ON THE WALLS TO EACH OTHER … IF I HEAR ANY MORSE CODE I’M REALLY GOING TO BE MAD!
MORE MAD THAN I AM NOW, AND THEN YOU’RE REALLY GOING TO BE SORRY, YOU THINK YOU WON’T BE BUT YOU WILL!!!
And I don’t want any more yelling! I AM SO TIRED OF ALL THE YELLING!!!!
Walk around house, pick up random things, slam them down in other places.
Christmas is about Peace! I’m a person, too, you know, and I deserve some Peace and Quiet! So you can both just sit in your rooms and THINK ABOUT PEACE!!! !
Feeling better. I sit down with a cup of tea and enjoy a little hard-earned, well-deserved peace.
Hey, it’s so peaceful I can hear my heart beating. Thu-thump, Thu-thump, Thu-thump. Dribble, Dribble, Dribble.
Uh oh, hearts aren’t supposed to dribble, are they? Am I dying? Have these boys finally killed me?
I stand up slowly, holding tightly to the side of the table in case I should fall and not get up. I’m busy picturing the contrite looks on my children’s faces as I’m carried away on a stretcher … when a sudden thought creeps into my brain.
I peer out the kitchen window.
Yep. The boys have been outside playing basketball the whole time.
I pick up my tea, grab my book and, as I pass the back door on my way to my quiet living room, I …
Lock. The. Door.
Note: Tomorrow my crazy wonderful children turn a dozen years old. When I started this column they had just turned 11. Much of my writing this past year has been designed to transport you along with me on parts of my parenting journey—mostly the good parts, but sometimes the other parts, too—the ones that leave me baffled, frustrated or concerned. I’ve enjoyed sharing my world with you and appreciate your comments and camaraderie. You’ve allowed me to laugh at it all, and you’ve laughed right along with me. Thank you for a great year. I hope your New Year brings you well-behaved kids, spotless counters and floors, and big hugs and sloppy kisses.