Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Banging Pots in the Early Morning

It has been a hot, dry summer for us and I think everyone, even kids, are ready to head back to school. Football practice starts tomorrow. I'm sure there's an email I need to check with details. Mike is asleep on the couch with a movie on.

Oh, there's another story that I really shouldn't tell you at all. Nick had trouble with a couple of friends who spent the nigh and I really should not tell the story. I'm not willing to take the risk of complaining about people when they might eventually recognize themselves. Even for a kid, it doesn't seem right though they would be least likely to encounter themselves in a middle-aged woman's rantings. Especially for a kid, it isn't right to broadcast mistakes, but I want to complain. I really do.

Okay, you're right. I won't tell all of it. Kids make mistakes and these didn't involve the big three, sex, drugs, or alcohol. So, the whole thing could have been worse. Still, I was so angry that I cried, but not in front of the boys. I'll keep those pesky and most interesting details out of the story.

Here are the basics. Two boys came for a sleepover and did things with food that were revolting. They left gross chunks and splatters of food everywhere, on my carpet, on my futon, on the lamp stand, on the coffee table. Some of it had to have been thrown to get where it was. I could see trajectory.

Who does that in someone else's house?

The funny part of it was that Nick, having tried to keep these boys from doing what they did, didn't get into trouble and was commended for his attempt at doing the right thing. He described how some boys he knows are not disciplined enough and so they behave badly wherever they go and the others are disciplined too much and they act out when their parents aren't around. He told me, yes me, that he was so happy that we were in-the-middle kind of parents. He's also taking quite a bit of interest in our anger. I think he was so relieved not to be in trouble, that we compared his past mistakes as easy compared to what these boys did. It was even better when we said that even what they did wasn't the worst a kid could do. Nick is pleased to know that he's not far down the scale. I've been trying to remind him more often that he's a good kid since it seems as though he needs to hear it. I hadn't noticed that need before, but I did in all of this.

In the meantime, I had to tell the parents of the boys what happened. That was hard to get to. I don't like complaining to people about their kids. Mike's response surprised me. After I discovered it, I stood, furious, in the kitchen and whispered fiercely to Mike that I wish I had his patience. Nick and the offenders slept in the next room. I was tempted to bang pots until they were awake. I was tempted to drive them home at six in the morning. I wasn't sure why I was whispering.

"Well, maybe patience is not what is needed here," he whispered back. It was then that I realized that parents should be involved.

And maybe a little early-morning pot banging too.

Thank you for listening, jb

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