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     So, there's a chance that someone in my house may not have been a quality mother today. And that mother was me. But in all fairness, the little people in my house weren't exactly being stellar children either. And that's why I sometimes forget that I'm an adult and I stoop to the level of a 6-year-old. Some things that I've learned about my 6-year-old self:
     1) I am a truly awesome tantrum-thrower.... I'm capable of stomping and slamming doors with the fierceness of The Hulk's mother. The baby thinks this is hysterical, and his giggles sometimes let the wind out of my angry sails, so I have to try extra hard to stay mad.... (because that's what 6-year-olds do, duh).
     2) Name-calling is not something I've grown out of yet. Let me give you an example: After telling the heathens at least 30 times (I'm not even close to exaggerating) that they are not allowed to play together while they're in their own rooms (because then it would be a consequence for me instead of for them), I found them (wait for it....) playing together. My response? "Someone please tell me.... are you deaf or are you dumb?? Don't stare at me like you're both... ANSWER ME!!" (Cameron starts to cry) "WHAT IS IT NOW!!??" I shout. "I-I d-d-don't know what d-d-deaf means," he says between sobs. "It means you can't hear, Cameron. Deaf means you can't hear," I tried to explain calmly. "Ok. I choose that one then," he says. "Then I choose dumb," Taylor pipes in. Excellent. I can tell this conversation has been real meaningful for us all.
     3) My 6-year-old self has a maturity level of a 4-year-old. That is correct... I'm emotionally younger than my children today! When they refused to stop fighting, no matter how many times I tried redirecting them (nicely at first.... Stalin-esque by the end), I remembered with delight that we were supposed to go to a pool party this afternoon. Ah HA!! I know how to get through to them! "And guess what, kids! We were supposed to go to a pool party today. And guess who's not going now? YOU. HA!!" (And yes, I actually said "HA" because, as previously noted, I was not exactly a quality mother today. I was actually a pretty rotten 6-year-old, if you ask me!) At this point my husband looked at me with baffled glance that said, What the heck is wrong with you? And I gave him a glance that said, Question me and die, sir.
     4) Threatening to run away.... we all did it when we were little. Some of us even packed our bags and walked to the end of the driveway. And others of us used it as a tool to freak their kids into submission. "If you don't stop fighting I'm going to pack my bags and run away!! And don't think I won't! I'll live in my car before I'll stay one more minute in this house with the two of you if you don't SHUT UP!!!" And I may or may not have pulled my suitcase out and left it open with a few pieces of clothing in it....just in case I needed to make a quick get-away.
     Short of giving them swords and letting them fight it out, I feel that I've run out of options most the time. I contemplated hand-cuffing them together and making their punishment to annoy each other for the entire day (and I'm not exactly ruling this one out yet), but today I chose to keep them completely apart. I told them that they obviously hate each other, so there will be no talking, no looking, and no interacting with one another. It wasn't intended to be reverse psychology, although now it seems the only thing they want to do is play with one another (go figure!). But I promptly remind them that since they hate each other soooo much I just can't risk letting them play together (which they continue to do the minute I walk away). What I wouldn't give for a day when someone.... ANYONE.... listens to me and obeys! My clients don't listen, my children don't listen, even my DOG wouldn't come when called today. She just sat there and stared at me as I called her name.... it's pretty bad when your pets don't even respect you enough to be compliant. So I whipped out my 6-year-old and threw a mini tantrum at her, too, until she came (with intentional slowness, I might add).
     I've decided that they only thing I can do is to ground myself. (No one else will heed their groundings anyway, so I might as well work on my own obedience instead.) I am grounded to my room (oh darn) and I have to do chores, such as laundry (which I was going to do anyways). And no dessert tonight (which is good, because I have a bridesmaid's dress to fit into). Plus, I have to go to bed early (SCORE!). I really think this will teach me a lesson.... I bet I'll be much more well-behaved tomorrow.