Wednesday, August 6, 2008

In a Funk

That's where I am right now. Where I have been for about a week. Funky Town. And not the fun 1970's inspired version either. I'm going through the motions, but my brain just isn't connecting with the rest of me. Today seems better than yesterday, thankfully, I just hope that it stays that way.

Times like this, I could really use a good cry. However, I just don't feel the urge in me to do so. Last night, I went to bed too late. I have been doing that a lot lately. Life has just thrown a few curve balls that boggle the mind and keep me awake worrying. I got in to bed and curled up next to Jason, hoping that the security of his arms would allow me the freedom to let it out. Damn if the man didn's start groping on me! There is NO way I'm in the mood for anything even remotely sexual. So I had to leave the security of his arms and the relief a good cry might have brought to me to escape his roaming insisting hands.

I'm rather certain that my mood is affecting my parenting. I'm not nearly as understanding, thoughtful, nor considerate as I could be. James gets on my last nerve much easier than usual.

Last night, James was complaining about how his life is so miserable, that we all hate him, blah blah blah. This came about because I made him use a plate that had Scooby Doo on it. I am not kidding. How I wish I were. With this funk, I got a little sadistic I admit. I am so very tired of hearing those words from James' mouth when I know, in fact, he does not have it horribly at all.

I looked at him dead in the eye and I said "You think you have it horrible?"
To which he cried "Yes, my life is AWFUL!" and a lot more crying and carrying on followed.

I grinned. When I grin and you are in trouble, that is not good news for you my friend. And he knew it. I said "Well. Let me tell you about how horrible I can make it. Let me see, I can take away your bed, your room, your clothes, your toys, your video games. You can sleep in the basement. With a blanket and a pillow and a mattress. You will wear only what I tell you you can wear. You will no longer get variety in your meals. You will no longer get sweets or good things to eat. You will have oatmeal for breakfast. You will have bread and butter and water for lunch. You will have peas, mashed potatoes, onions, and liver for dinner, every day. You will do 100 jumping jacks for exercise. You will not play, at all, ever. You will do hard manual chores like raking the lawn, digging up the garden, and scrubbing the floors, every day. You will stand and read the Bible, aloud, for hours, every day and that will be your school work. Now, do you still think you have it so hard?"
To which he started crying and said "No, it's not that bad. But you telling me all that stuff upsets me!" UGH!

Now, keep in mind this about me. I'm not sure I could go to such extreme, though it is tempting. If the child wants to complain about a miserable existence and being a slave, in my mind, it makes sense to show him what a truly miserable existence is. Odds are, however, that it would completely backfire on me. How do I teach the ungrateful to be greatful? How do I teach the angry to just let it go? How do I get through his thick ass skull that it really is so much better than he could imagine and if he were to look outside himself he'd see that? How can I teach him that when he says the things he says, knowing he means them, at least at that point in time, how much they hurt everyone around him?

Jason and I bust our asses to give our kids what we can, the best we can afford to. Yes, that means they don't get everything they want, all the time. I like to believe that even if we could afford to do that, we'd show some restraint. Short of taking it all away, and even then I'm not sure it would work, how do we show him, show them, that they have so much to be thankful for?

I know a lot would say "faith" or "show him God". Here's the kicker on that one. We aren't Christians. We don't believe in the Christian God and the One True Faith or anything even remotely close to that. James doesn't think there is a god at all. He truly perceives the notion of being forced to read the Bible as pure torture. Jayden gets some concept of it. I'm pretty sure Katy does too. So it's not really how we are teaching that seems to be the issue here, at least I don't think so. It's the student. It's that thick ass skull and the self centeredness that is completely his father's attitude all over again.

My funk does not make parenting a child like James any easier at all. It makes it more difficult. He makes me so angry. I hate feeling that way, especially in regards to one of my children. He is so thoughtless and ungreatful I have to wonder what the hell is wrong with him. How can he not see what he has and how wonderful it all is?

I think we all need to start being more positive about what we DO have and less negative about what we DON'T have. That may help. He focuses in on the comments about difficulty paying the bills and how there are things we'd like to have in place of what we already do have. We need to start talking more about the great things we have here in place already. Focus more on the positives. Wish me luck. With a funk like mine, that very easily could lead to a depression that I'm trying to fight back tooth and nail, the positive is a dificult thing to see indeed.

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