When things are normal, it is easy to fall into painting rosy pictures of what Ama X life is really like. I think I have done that. If that is the case, then I have misled you. Many things I am not at liberty to share. Some of what I have written below may be too much but I think it necessary in order to help both Ama X’s and mother’s alike.
I am near completion to the summer month that I’ve had all of my children and I must say, I’m done.
I am beside myself and ready to quit. I’ve wanted to make a few calls and arrange for early pickups. I’ve wanted to leave myself. I’m telling you, if I had a previous addiction, this month would have been a MAJOR challenge for me to stay away from it. It’s been ROUGH!!!!!!
I am mentally, emotionally, and physically drained, and at the time I am writing this, I still have a week to go.
What did the kids do? Nothing. Everyone acted their age (12, 9, 8, and 2). It’s the merge of three different households under one roof that made me want to cut my dreads off.
Anthony – my oldest son. For starters, he needed to be reprogrammed from spending weeks with his maternal grandparents. He just started following a doctor’s ordered diet plan. I had weeks to prepare for him to come with this diet. Two weeks into the month, his diet changed again. I struggled to figure out what I was going to feed him! My husband and I have been constantly teaching him that there is no difference between half-truths and lies. It’s been an uphill battle. (The next example is fictitious but I am using it as an example of what I’ve experienced in the past two weeks) Me – “Tony, why is your book on the floor? You know to put your things away.” Anthony – “I was going to read it later so I left it there.” Me – “When is later? Do you know when later is or are you just saying that because you forgot to put your book away?” Anthony – “I didn’t forget to put my book away. I was just going to read it later.” At this point, I know he’s lying. I can tell by the look on his face that he is lying. He might have intended to read the book later but that is not why he left it on the floor. I’m exasperated. I felt like digging a hole, climbing in, and putting the dirt on top of me.
Scott – my youngest son. He loves to laugh. He loves to laugh so much that he is starting to view a lot of life as a joke. I know he is only eight but certain foundations need to be set. He’s also easily distracted. It is a chore to keep him on even the simplest task. Doing simple things requires a lot of repeated commands from me to have him focus on the job at hand. He’s not slow to understand nor does he have ADHD. He is a BRILLIANT eight year old boy but he needs help to stay on task. (Fictitious example) Me – “Scott, take your clothes upstairs please and put them away.” Silence. Me – “Scott! Did you hear me?” Scott nods his head. Me – “Scott. Don’t nod your head at me. You can speak. Answer me when I am speaking to you! Do you hear me?” Scott – “Yes.” He picks up his clothes and begins to make his two yard journey to the stairs. I get busy with something else. I return a few moments later and find him 1/8 of the way into his two yard journey to the steps. Me – “SCOTT!! What did I tell you to do?” Scott walks to the steps and does what I told him to do. This is all day, everyday, several times a day. Often I stand with my mouth hanging open because I just have no words.
Bella – Bella, Bella, Bella, my oldest daughter. At what point do I just through in the towel. We have had issues with bathing suits, colored lip gloss, shorts, skirts, bra straps showing, and doing chores. I say some things and she responds as if I am the dumbest chick in the world. I have had to call other adults and check myself to make sure I am not crazy for saying what I say. It is as if any instruction I give her is the first time anyone has ever said it to her before. (Another fictitious example). Me – “Bella, you need to wear a slip. I should not be able to see your underwear through your dress.” Bella – “I don’t have a slip.” Me – “Then you need to wear something else.” Bella walks away surprised, shocked, and giving me the what-is-your-problem look. I then call my husband and my mother to make sure something hasn’t changed and I was not out of godly order teaching my daughter that being able to see your draws through your clothes is wrong.
Jazmine – My two-year old, in-house, daughter. Two year old behavior is challenging anyway but having a full house has exacerbated the symptoms. I think she has taken no more than four normal naps since her siblings have been here. Her vocabulary as increased by leaps and bounds, not necessarily in the correct direction. No one wants her to go to bed so my night “routine” has extended. She is into everything anyway but now there is more everything to get into including her siblings. Getting out of the house with four children is a task. Jazmine can put her own shoes on but her siblings like to help her. Jazmine is a choleric like both her parents and does not want help. Her brothers help her anyway. They fight like cats and dogs ALL DAY LONG!!! Jazmine and Bella are usually fine but every once in a while, they antagonize each other. I know it all to well. I am ten years apart from my brother and we bugged each other every day. (I don’t know how my mother did it). It will be nice to get my Jazmine back but I am afraid, this summer month has changed her forever.
This mess, being Ama X, taint easy. Some days, I can attest, are downright MISERABLE! Some days will make you contemplate divorce. Not because there is an issue with your spouse but mothering children that live elsewhere is wearing. (Sidebar – I am not mothering them as in trying to take the place of their mother etc. I am the maternal figure in our household therefore, I am mothering.) I’ve cried, I’ve put myself on time out, I’ve prayed, I’ve laid prostrate in front of the Lord, I’ve read, and I’ve needed a minute and rolled out with my husband.
I am still in the thick of it. I have a week left. My conclusion to this rampage? This too shall pass!