Today, I was that mom. You know the one I'm talking about. The one publicly upset with her seemingly impossible children. The one that makes people snicker thoughts about how it's no wonder that the kids are like that, given the crazy woman who is their mother.
Yeah, today I was that mom.
Urban Kid 1 turned seven (SEVEN!!????) on Friday. And so, she had a pediatrician appointment today in order to clarify that, indeed, she continues to be the picture of health and beauty.
Here's the thing about Urban Kid 1: however she may be in private, she's always "on" in public. She can be counted on to be polite, upbeat and interested in what's being said.
Urban Kid 2 is the Wild Card. Especially if Urban Kid 1 is doing her spotlight thing.
So today, the (late) doctor (finally) comes into the exam room. I like this doctor. I've thought the world of this woman from the moment she took my cranky three-day-old Urban Kid 1 from my exhausted, exasperated arms and swayed her into a long, peaceful nap while asking me questions and offering suggestions in a way that stayed on this side of gentle without crossing into that side of condescending.
And there she was, Doctor Awesome, chatting away with Urban Kid 1.
You can fill in the blanks on Urban Kid 2's reaction???? She kicked and fussed and refused to be still. She yelped and pouted and said, "NO! I WON'T be quiet!," making my efforts to quell her seem, well....., impotent. And Doctor Awesome took the lead and warned her that she needed to quiet down because Doctor Awesome could not hear to do her exam of Urban Kid 1. And Urban Kid 2 continued to pout and kick, nearly kicking Doctor Awesome, who was crouched down to chat with and look at Urban Kid 1.
And then it happened.
Doctor Awesome's voice took a stern tone that I'd never heard before and told Urban Kid 2 that she had to go into the hallway, now.
And I gratefully took the opening in the situation that Doctor Awesome offered, scooped up Urban Kid 2 and sat her down in a timeout outside of the exam room's closed door. I gave her an earful, too. And yeah, I was hoping that Doctor Awesome was hearing some of my diatribe.
Finally, Doctor Awesome asked me to come back in for the rest of the exam, since a parent needs to be in there for certain parts of it. And Urban Kid 2 had cooled her jets a bit.
Later, as I was checking out at the receptionist's desk, Urban Kid 2 asked if she could have a sticker. I bent down low to her, nose-to-nose and said in a nearly murderous voice, "did Doctor Awesome have to boot you out of the exam room because you couldn't behave? Yes? The no, you may not have a sticker." I then stood up to face the receptionist, smiled pleasantly and sweetly said, "I'm sorry, how much do I owe you?" God bless her, she gave me a genuine smile and said, "Don't worry about it -- I have two of my own at home!"
From there, it was off to the grocery store, where both kids turned on each other and on me like little cats. It was on the cart, off the cart, she's on my side of the cart, you're too big to ride on the cart anyway, stop whining at your sister, quit tattling on your sister, do not run out of this aisle, etc etc.
At last, I became that mom. The one that you can hear in the next aisle chewing out her ferrel children. The one who stares at them for a beat as they stare back, takes her hands off the cart, says "forget it, we're not getting food today; you two can tell daddy why" and walks away from the cart and them.
Yeah, that was me. A shining moment.
But my Urban Kids were smart enough to have an "oh sh*t, what if she's serious" moment and chase me down the aisle, pleading to go back to shopping. Heck, maybe they were just too clear on how very little food we actually had at home!
I don't know what Urban Dad did when he (finally) got home, but he knew the story coming in the door. And the next thing I knew, a sobbing and repentant Urban Kid 2 was in the kitchen sniffling about how sorry she was and how she loved me and how she promises to be better tomorrow.
Me too, Urban Kids. Me too.