October 20, 2002

Why I Hate the Phone

When you're a mother of a child with ADHD everything about being their mom becomes that much more complicated and magnified. It's barely into the school year already and I'm being stalked by the teachers. They love to jot down little notes that say things like, "It's a pleasure to have Snoo in the class this year. I'd like to get to know her better as she'll be the featured student of the week soon. Does she have any other interests besides chasing her neighbor with scissors and dumping plant water down the radiator?"All of this is written down on adorable note cards with apple border and friendly looking cartoon children. It's a nice touch. I've been working every night this week at the service desk and missed the conferences. Normally I would have the familiar twinge of mommy guilt; however, I try to make a point to miss her conferences. I prefer to go for conferences when the school is empty and I’m under the cover of dark and big hats. It cuts down on embarrassing and awkward meetings with other parents. Like the time I volunteered for a parent’s potluck and ended up chopping onions with a woman whose son rode Snoo's bus. She was one of those psycho PTA moms.

After chopping onions and getting brats ready for the potluck she finally asked me who my child was. Her child was in the 5th grade and Snoo was in 1st. (She was held back at the end of the year.) Her face got strangely grim and she began to give me the third degree.

“Your daughter was the one who stabbed my son!!!!!!!!!!?”

Oh dear God. Please, make me a bird so I can fly, far far away. Run, Melissa, Run.

“She's always annoying him on the bus. She bothers him. She makes up stupid songs about him and tells the kids she's going to marry him when she grows up. She pokes him. I've complained to the driver all year. When he finally told her to get lost she stabbed him in the p*nis with her pencil!”

Trying to compose myself, I respond with, “Oh. That was your son? I am so sorry. I don't know what to say. I have no idea why in the world she did that. I never advocate violence or poking another’s private with pencils. (Did I just say that?) I have no idea what possessed her to do such a thing.”

I suppose for integrity purposes, I need to back up a minute to a time during my own childhood. I haven't shared this with Snoo because I have to maintain the illusion that I was a perfect child. What I didn't tell this mom is that back in the 5th grade the class clown was seated in the back all by his lonesome where the pencil sharpener was. He was always getting in trouble and he was the typical loud, bossy trouble-maker who knocked you into walls and took your Twinkie. One day after he had bumped my arm one too many times while I tried to sharpen my pencil I used my kung-fu moves and stabbed him in the arm. He had to get a tetanus shot and his parent’s threatened to sue my mom for the medical bills. My mom told him he got what he deserved and after that the boy thought I was a rock star. It wouldn’t have mattered anyhow, they would have gotten nothing since I don’t think we even had any furniture at the time and the contents of the fridge amounted to one jar of pickle juice.

Back to this irate woman, “Did you know that he had to go get a tetanus shot for that? He was so embarrassed. She stabbed him in the penis for Christ sakes! What kind of little girl does that?”Well, a very angry one. Like duh. But I didn’t say that. She was literally holding a knife.

(Gulp) “She said your son was always mean to her and called her names.”“Your daughter is a brat and I can't believe a little girl could do such a thing. How are you raising that child? And I never heard anything from you. You don't have the decency to contact me to apologize.”“I don't know what to say, I am so sorry.

I’m thinking, what was supposed to do to do, call you up and ask how are your son’s crotch is feeling? They don't make hallmark cards for, “I’m sorry my child is prone to impulsive fits of anger and stabbed your mouthy son in the crotch.”

Our Snoo is as pretty and sweet as the next girl. Sometime she just acts like the terminator. I don’t understand it. I don’t condone it. I have taught her differently. We’re as confused as every one else. At least we know our girl can kick some butt if she has to. We just need to keep her away from sharp objects.

I wanted to go hide in the janitor’s closet and cry and it wasn't because of the onions.

Now, it's that time again for parent socials, open houses and conferences. This year’s teacher is very big on being organized, checking schoolwork and assignment notebooks which are all things an ADHD child needs. The problem is, she’s cold. My kid needs a teacher that can be warm and affectionate.

Her resource teacher picked this teacher for Snoo thinking she'd be good for her. Snoo doesn't like her at all and declared the teacher was mean before she ever met her. But anyone who tells her no or makes her do something she doesn’t want to is mean. This is a child that when sticking her head out the window, will bite the blinds because she’s mad at them for poking her in face.

The teacher didn't bother to read Snoo's IEP before school started. Now, I have a word of advice to teachers. If you have a student with an IEP there's probably a reason why. You might want to check the forms beforehand. It's especially helpful when you have a child whose butt is allergic to chairs and has in the past been known to wrap jump ropes around other children’s necks. That's something you might want to be prepared for. I’m just saying.

If the teacher had read the IEP, she would have known that she can't put a distractible child with unpredictable behavior and poor impulse control in the back of the class. Not a good thing. No, in fact, that’s actually quite stupid.

The teacher jotted down the following:

I'm making Snoo stay in during recess to complete unfinished class work since she works slow and gets off task. Snoo's missing details, not paying attention to directions, working too slow, forgetting things she's learned, forgetting her folder, books, assignment notebooks and so forth. An early intervention is desired.

That's a short list considering her extreme range of ADHD. She's lucky she's not sitting upside flinging her feet into the air while simultaneously spitting apple skins at people. She did this in first grade. I've always taught my children it's polite to share. I always work closely to manage the symptoms and undesirable behaviors of her ADHD, but work with me here. The teacher needs to follow the IEP or it doesn't work. Snoo will always need resource help no doubt, not only for weak subjects but for life management. The child would spend three hours on homework and then forget to turn it in because she forgot she even had a folder.

( No, I did not do drugs while I was pregnant. But if you're offering...)

The most asinine part is that she's holding her in during recess. Keeping a child indoors who has hyperactivity indicates a person has a poor common sense processor. I heard they sell those at drugstores these days. Next to the aspirin. If the constant notes and calls aren't fun enough, Snoo's been a little snot lately. It's difficult to tell sometimes how much of a connection you make with her. After seeing a lot of pediatricians they diagnosed her with three kinds of PMS. Psychotic Mood Shift, Pissy Mood Syndrome and Pardon My Sobbing. They're working on a genetic screening as we speak.

She’s often behaves erratically and then cries she's lonely and has no friends. It breaks my heart as a mom, but she doesn’t seem to be able listen. She's got a whole different world going on in her mind and it's not in this galaxy. I just love her anyways and stay on birth control. I think this is why God made most children adorable. Otherwise when we realize everything that’s involved with parenting, and feel totally unequipped, we might try and drop them off on someone else which would make them nothing more than pets.

Instead, we dig out their baby pictures and pretend days like this never happen.

I'm armed with a plan of action this year though. It's called Concerta. Thank God for medication re-checks. Both hers and mind.

No matter what, she’s my girl and I love her and instead of dwelling on the fact that she almot burnt the house down, I instead focus on her hearty giggle and contagious smile. She’s come a long way from the days when she didn’t even speak clearly. Now, we can’t get her to stop talking which is an understable complaint of her teachers. I don’t blame them, but what’s a mom to do? I do my best and spend a lot of time praying I don’t put them into therapy for the rest of their lives.

That’s all a mom can do. That and I get an answering machine.

June 01, 2002

First Corn on the Cobb

Perhaps I should title this Why I Don't Take My Kids Out to Resturants. Apparently none of us explained to the sweet little man how to eat sweet corn. After he tried to eat like a puppy for a few minutes The Husband demonstrated to him how it's done.

Jake watched intently before trying again, but I have no idea what the heck Snoo is doing. Dear, it's sweet corn, not spicy corn.

This is precisely why we don't take our kids out in public these days. Not to mention I barely have any decent pictures of Snoo because she's either hiding from the camera, trying to poke the lense out, or she looks like a 10 year old strung out on crack sugar.

Now, I'm not sure if the corn is just so good it's making Jake crazy or maybe it's so bad that he's about to eat our thumbs off. Something's up though because Snoo is plugging her nose? Um, is she going to take a dip underwater or does the corn taste like seaweed or something? Sometimes I wonder about that kid...

Jake eventually gets the hang of it and puts on those charming glances. Even though he was leaving behind a salty greasy mess, I was too busy looking into those great big brown eyes. And wondering why I can never keep any clothes on the kid.

May 31, 2002

Boys and their... Dollhouses?

Who says boys shouldn't play with dollhouses? Yes, I know what it looks like. In one of the pictures it appears as though the T-Rex is humping poor Cookie monster, or as Snoo used to call him, Oodie Odder, but I can assure you it's just a friendly hu and this is a G-rated site. He's giving Big Bird a kiss on the cheek in the third picture which proves T-Rex is a lover and not a fighter all after. Either that or he's eating off Big Bird's face but Jakey's expression is just too sweet to concede to that theory.

Snoo had this toy when she was little, only she made sure to scratch all the eyes off of every character. They were staring at her and she didn't like that.

I found this house at a yard sale and swooped it up for old time's sake. As you can see Jakey bee quite enjoys the Sesame Street house so long as dinosaurs can chill with the baby puppets. It started off really friendly, he was just checking Big Bird out at first. Then T-Rex came into the picture. Sometime's he gives hugs and kisses and other times I hear a big ROAR and it appears he's stompng them to death. In the second picture, I'm certain the dinosaur is bowing in reverence to King Big Bird. What dinosaur wouldn't? It's not every day that you meet a ten foot tall yellow bird that sings and talks. Unless you went to Woodstock.

May 23, 2002

Why Moms are on Prozac

Could this be why so many young moms are on Prozac these days? Now, I'm good at shrugging this off and waiting for what's next but day after day, after awhile you get tired of cleaning the house and finding it totally destroyed ten minutes later. There's crap all over the table, floor, and counters. It's ridiculous. Why do I bother?

Oh. My. God. This is what it has come to. And who keeps leaving the cereal out?

And note the toddler that's standing on the table, while trying to shove his chubby little gut into a crayola crafts tub.

It's no wonder that he hasn't hurt himself yet.

May 12, 2002

Strung out Snoo

Every parent has dreams for their kids. They hope for a bright, healthy, prosperous future. Every so often when you remember that you had no idea what you were doing when you had kids, you have a tiny glimpse of what you fear could be less of a dream and more a nightmare. Little Johnny in the slammer let's say, or little Susie strung out. Well, today, I have proof those occassional thoughts might have some validity to them. Some little punk stole the camera and decided to document Snoo's often hyper rampages. I have no idea which child took this picture, or how such a beautiful blue-eyed girl can photograph so terribly. Out of all the bad pictures I have of her, this one is truly the worst. Maybe I should have the Betty Ford clinic's number ready, just in case.

May 05, 2002

Walks with Dad

One of the perks of joblessness for Richard is all the time he's gotten to spend with the kids, most especially with Jakey bee since he's home all day. Although, it has been rough, all the bonding they've gotten to do is priceless. Now, I can see how God takes bad situations and shows you the blessing.

April 18, 2002

Mommy Money Bags

Just call me Mommy Money Bags. Kids have a way of sucking you dry. And I'm not just talking about the ones that refuse to wean. Take for instance, grocery shopping. Everyone knows that you'll leave with at least $10 in tooth destroying goodies or junk just because you don't want to deal with the sad eyes or worse, full blown tantrums. Since my kids are perfect angels, and I'm totally full of crap in saying so but I'll try anyways I never feel pressured into buying a box of cereal that tastes like sugar coated cardboard just because they are shaped like Winnie the Pooh. I but them because they’re on sale and I have a coupon. That’s right.

However, as of this week it's unsafe for me to visit the farmers market anymore unless I leave the little man at home. You see, there's this lady there that sells tacky lawn ornaments. You know what I'm talking about. We've all seen the nice little old lady on the block that decides she's going to display an unholy combination of Looney Toon characters, kissing Holly Hobbies, and freaky little animals. The lady is quite talented at this unusual form of art, but she's pushy and loud. I almost like her. Recently she decided to create a wooden Barney for the yard. Who the hell would ever want Barney in their yard anyways!?

Nobody, that's who.

Unless you're a mom of a toddler. I'm sure it was her sinister plan to make the purple dinosaur so all the little two year olds will beg mommy to buy a ginormous Barney figurine when all we wanted to do was pick-up the sugar snap peas of the season. Unless it doesn’t sing. Good God for that. I'm disgusted with the clever old hag, but I got to give it to her. It worked. My little toddler decided to run off like a bolt of lightning with his eagle eyes fixed on what he knows just has to be his new favorite friend. He picked it right up out of the ground and ran off with it. At first I was impressed by his speed, strength and his determination. After all, he’s adorable. I humored him by letting him walking around to show passerby’s his best buddy and then I helped him put it back into the ground.

It was futile. He jets back, grabs the thing, and off he goes with it. It has a six inch bar hanging of its foot. Two year olds are fast and clever. I’d put it back, we’d start walking away and since my hands were full heavy produce, he’d dart right away from me and get Barney out of the ground lickety split. The woman was of no help. He was a potential customer and I was his wallet. We did this like four times. It was out of the ground before I even got to him. I now curse the vendors that set up near this woman. This went on for about ten minutes before that little lip began to quiver and his big brown eyes welled up with tears. Then I think I saw fangs.

Oh the frustration, to be only two feet tall and broke and within reach of a talking animal. You've got people ten times your size always telling you no and then dragging you away.

At the risk of losing a finger and totally embarrassing myself even further as I run around with bags of vegetables, a giant wooden Barney and a toddler yelling, "I want Barney!", I gave in and bought the dumb thing. Ten dollars! Ten freaking dollars for something she knows full well nobody in their right mind would put into their yard. Did I mention it has a metal rod sticking of if its foot and Jakey thinks its a TOY? Thank God it's removable or I’d never forgive myself if he poked his eye out with a stupid lawn ornament that I never should have bought in the first place.

He's so happy though. He thinks he's got his favorite little buddy in the house. He carries that stupid thing everywhere and it's quite big. Superman’s convinced that he's going to hurt himself with it and he constantly questions my judgment in ever buying the thing. I told him he’s welcome to take it away and do the shopping next time. Oh, and the hat was not included. That was Jakey Bee's idea because” mama says you hafta wear hats in the sun.”



April 09, 2002


Today in southeastern Wisconsin a male toddler contemplated jumping off of a large boulder in a popular park in Waukesha county. It was around 12:00pm when the toddler became so distraught by his mother's contstant barage of pictures, that he then decided whether or not he should jump off a rock for some reprieve. We're happy to report that after some coaxing and reassurance, the tense situation was resolved and the toddler was seen frolicking near the river with his father. The mother had no comment today, however, she was seen trying to take pictures of the news crew, to document memories of the incident for the said toddler's baby book. Something like that.

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