Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Sucker Punch; Part II

Maybe the other team really deserved this.  I've been to a few games in my day; I know how it goes.  And I won't fib, I've let the "Tall Man" fly a few times like this kid did. But the fact remains, that it's okay for me . . . I'M NOT TWO!

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Maybe kids lash out when people need to learn a big-fat lesson, or when adults should be playing a better game.  

Maybe they throw tantrums when red sugar coats their cheeks.  

Maybe they love making mothers nervous and aggravated.  So upset, mamas shake in their brand-new boots!  

Whatever the reason,  I'm trying to decide since this story is about seven kids that lashed out at me.   I still don't know what I did to deserve it, but I'll figure it out someday, even if it's at Heaven's gates.

This story is a continuation from yesterday: The Sucker Punch; Part I 

When I answered the door, a cold breeze ripped through the door frame--it was a sign that my death hung in the wind.  My "friend" looked awesome, decked out in her new clothes.  She'd dyed her hair a dusky brown.  It hung in perfectly proportioned barrel curls.  Her manicured nails sparkled as she spoke with her hands.

"It's so fabulous to see you."  She hugged me then and her kids literally tore into my house and started playing with my kids in the T. V. room downstairs.  I didn't get a great look at them because they were like Richard Simmons in fast forward.  But from what I did see, they were so gorgeous they shone beyond their raggedy clothes.

I gaped after they'd vanished, and patted my "friend" on the back as she hugged me, a gushy hug.  I'm not a touchy person anyway, but it was awkward regardless.  She squished me and her boobs must have been doused with miracle grow after junior high!  

Now let me tell you, that woman is my complete opposite.  It's great that we were friends once (she'd helped me through some hard times), but I don't think we have anything in common now.  I'd rather be playing with my kids, writing or perfecting my sewing skills, than going to the mall to get a massage.  My kids wear the nice clothes, while I get stuck with the second-hand winners.  I enjoy stuff that's free, like hiking or biking, while she obviously enjoys the finer things in life like Cafe' Perfecte'.

She looked amazing--you bet she did.  I felt happy for her, but wished my Snoopy Pants hadn't busted at the Zipper.  Why hadn't I done my hair?  There I stood in front of God's gift to men; I wore two dollar jeans and one of Cade's baggy Dallas Cowboy's shirts!  I hadn't done my make-up and instead chose to represent Tony Romo's failure!  What had I been thinking?  I vowed that I'd look amazing when she got back.  She'd do a double take and not even believe how nice I cleaned up too!

We didn't have much to say as we remained shuffling in the entryway.  "You'd never guess you've had five kids," she said.

That was nice of her, especially since she'd included Zeke in that statement.  Her comment reminded me of how sweet she'd been in school. 

"So, what have you been up to?  Do you . . . have a job, or are you just a stay at home mom?"
Just?  Was there a JUST in there?  That woman didn't want to stand, talking about trivialities.  She wanted to hang out with her buds--the ones who wear M·A·C on their faces and get sushi that's imported!  But I gave her the benefit of a doubt; maybe she hadn't meant it to sound JUST like it had.  Plus she'd included Zeke in her previous statement.

"Kids are sooo busy, but I did start my own business six years ago.  It's done pretty good."

"Wow," she said, shocked.  "Well, I have a real job as a receptionist.  You should try it sometime.  It's nice getting out of the house . . . away from this."  She swatted at the general direction of my kitchen.  

A real job?  So suddenly having my own business--which paid for our brand new car--isn't having a REAL job?  I was about to flip out on her--Kung Foo Panda style.  

But before I could even ski-doosh, she continued talking.  I learned so much about her, you wouldn't believe it and the whole time I kept thinking that she needed to head out to lunch.  "Aren't you going to be late?" I asked.

"Oh, I came a little bit early so we could visit."

Visit?  Or talk about her?  I heard someone in the kitchen and wondered what the kids were doing.  But then I decided "The Scribe" was old enough to look after them.  My oldest daughter is usually pretty good like that.

"Well, I better get going.  But you really do look great," she said and then paused waiting for something.  

Then I got it; she wanted me to return the favor.  I REFUSE to give out compliments unless they're true.  So instead of saying something about her crazy comments, I said, "And you look beautiful."  It was true.  Even though it wasn't a competition I suddenly felt it was and didn't want to look down at my own "Boobie funeral."  

So if you haven't guessed, maybe the green monster of envy was lurking in my heart.  It shouldn't have been, but maybe it was.  It's not fun seeing certain people from my teen years.  I hate how some of them make themselves feel better by putting others down.  But I wasn't sure if she was intentionally being mean or just oblivious to my prickling spirit.  Plus, it was possible that I'd taken everything wrong after turning into a green, bitter beast who was upset; that woman had pawned her offspring instead of wanting to simply hang out--after years.  Whatever the problem was, I boiled inside like a bottle filled with vinegar and baking soda.

"You like 'em?" she giggled, knowing I'd noticed her melons.  "My ex bought them for me, before I broke his heart."

I blinked.  That was interesting, so interesting I was done talking.  I knew if she continued with that line, I'd probably refuse to watch her kids.  So, I took action.  "Well, have a great time."  I waved and began shutting the door.

"OH, wait," she said.  "My twins just finished potty training!  Gotta love how the ladies at church helped me with that. I hope they won't have an accident.  They haven't had once since Tuesday." 

"Tuesday?  But that was yesterday?"

"See you in a few hours," she said and skipped down my steps.  Her barrel curls jingled crisply against each other. 

A few hours actually sounded like a long time, but I was done talking to her and didn't want to object and prolong things.  The sooner she left, the sooner she'd return.  I shut the door and leaned against it.  Great!  Kids that are just potty trained are not fun to watch.  Plus, she hadn't even left them a change of clothes.


It wasn't until I shut the door that I heard the commotion going on in my basement.  As I ran past the kitchen, I saw that the fridge hung wide open!  Then the thought hit me, I'd been talking to "Melon Girl" for A LONG time.  Maybe it wasn't a long time to adults--but in kid years it must have been forever!  

I ran to the fridge and the crisper was open.  
All of the apples and three packages of eighteen eggs each (some hard boiled and dyed)--WERE GONE!  Was someone making an apple quiche?!
 
My baby wailed, waking from her nap and showing her distaste of the war going on in my basement.  I shut the fridge, ran upstairs and wanted to cry with my baby.  

Someone had played in the bathroom.  I knew because they'd drawn lipstick all over the carpet and the closet door.  I threw the baby a toy and let her play in her crib for a minute. 

I felt like Cinderella as I scrubbed, hoping to catch the stain in time.  I almost smiled when degreaser took the lipstick off the door.  It was a victory, yes a small one, but when you're still hovering over the sounds of Hell (and not amongst them), any victory is a happy one.   But no matter how hard I tried, I couldn't get the lipstick out of the carpet.  (Does anyone know what removes lipstick from carpet?  I never got it out.)
I held the baby after that.  We pulled a rug over the stains as I heard someone screaming from the war zone in the basement, "You said I could plant the next egg!"  

I knew then, that kid was in the front lines of his army.  He didn't know it, but that's the most dangerous place to be!

Plant the next egg?  I remembered the fridge and the fact that I still hadn't introduced myself to "Melon Girl's" kids.  I'd been so upset about that lipstick, so absolutely livid, I'd forgotten about the missing eggs and apples.  I'd forgotten about the quiche. 

"I wanted to plant the next egg." The Hippie (my second oldest daughter sobbed.)  "You said I could do it since the apples didn't work."

I tiptoed, wanting to catch every word.  I clutched the baby closer to my hip and went to the wall next to the T. V. room.

"Now these colored eggs are extra special."  I heard The Scribe say.  "If you plant these eggs, all your Easter wishes will come true.  It'll grow an Easter tree!"

The other kids cheered in amazement.  I got the whole picture then.  That Scribe is a wise one.  I bet she'd told the kids that the regular eggs would grow eggs that would turn into chicks, but the colored eggs would be obviously better.
I didn't know what to do.  My daughter, my sweet eldest daughter, had been the instigator behind my missing produce!!!  I stood still, shaking a bit from the impact of the blow.  I'd thought "Melon Girl's" kids would be to blame, NOT MY OWN DAUGHTER.

I heard them open the door.  The little kids sounded so excited, I didn't know how to handle things.  After they'd bounded from the room, I heard The Scribe laugh, a very silly laugh.  "I've got them planting eggs," she said, giggling happily until I stepped from behind the wall.

I planned on saying something witty, something absolutely awesome in its terror, but I'd stepped into a puddle of pee instead!  I groaned and the baby on my hip laughed.  I stared at her.  She didn't blink and I think she got the picture; this was not a good time to laugh.

I grabbed The Scribe by her ear after that.  The time for wit had passed.  Nothing could wait a moment longer, so I pulled her to the backyard and gasped.  

Was this how people searched for dinosaur bones?  Had a million gophers taken over my yard?  All of my spoons slept next to dirt patches in my yard.  How many eggs had they buried!  I wondered if that was punishment for being jealous of "Melon Girl" even if only for a moment.

"What have you done?" I seethed to The Scribe next to me.

She said something about burying eggs and apples . . . apples and eggs.  But I didn't completely listen.  I saw three toddlers, my boy was one of them.  All three were covered in tribal designs that looked very much like cherry lipstick!  Eggs caked their clothes, I knew because dirt stuck sporadically to the egg and lipstick.  I wondered what "Melon Girl's" twins had looked liked before their pants hung soaking wet and their arms and faces turned holly wood like monsters in Anaconda.
 
I handed the baby to The Scribe.  I dialed "Melon Girl" and paced as I listened to some country song that represented her ringer.  It rang and rang.  "I cried when she left me . . . I knew I'd done her wrong . . ."

"You are going to dig up every one of these eggs!" I said to The Scribe as I paced.  "I don't want a bunch of rotten eggs come summer!"

She paled and the answering machine picked up.  I left a message.  

I called two more times over the course of the egg dig-up.  Each time I didn't get a real answer.  The last time I yelled at the answering machine.  "You've been gone all day.  Either come and get your kids, or I'm calling the police!"

It was a huge step for me.  I've never done something like that, but I was pissed.  She called after that, said she'd get there as fast as she could.

So, I didn't look awesome when she got back.  I looked like the creature from the black lagoon.

"What's on their faces?" she asked as she tilted one of their faces up.  Her oldest boy was still completely filthy, but I'd given the twins a bath SINCE THEY'D PEED.

"Lipstick.  I couldn't get it totally off them OR my carpet.  Your boy's been . . . digging in my backyard."

She paused, red with rage.  "Why'd you give the twins a bath?  I didn't say that was okay."

"They peed.  You won't answer your phone, not to mention you didn't bring me diapers OR NEW CLOTHES!  Plus, I've been too busy digging up eggs!"

"Digging up eggs?  Elisa, you've . . .changed.  Come on, kids!"  She grabbed her kids.

"Fine, just take my towels," I said because the kids had JUST gotten out of the tub.

"I will.  I've never seen a worse sitter in all my life!"

So because I suck, I owed her those towels?  Maybe they were cheap, but they were mine!  She actually took them!  I couldn't hold it in.  I bawled my fists, my dirt-lined nails and fingers shook.  "I may suck as a sitter, but you get what you pay for!"

She left her twin's clothes and I threw them away.  I know I'm horrible, but they were on their last leg anyway.

So, we're not friends on facebook anymore.  I suck.  I should have tried harder to get the lipstick off.  I should have put the twins in my sons clothes even though he's in a 2T.  But I didn't.  Maybe I'm a horrible person, but I'm finally losing my cool.  I can't act like everything's okay when it's not.  It's like when Zeke died, I couldn't be nice even when it was the social thing to do.

But as an after thought:

We didn't find all of the eggs. My neighbor said I'm going to have the healthiest yard ever.

I don't know if The Scribe totally learned her lesson.  I think she's still laughing inside.  That's why I might buy a tree while she's at school this week.  I want to plant it right where I noticed she left a colored egg.  Then I could hang plastic eggs from it on Easter.  Is that mean?  What would you do?  And how in the Hell can I get lipstick out of my carpet?