This morning I was meeting a friend to workout at 8:45, and since the gym is super close to Number 6’s school, I told him I would drive him this morning if he wanted me to because recently he’s developed a little bit of car and bus sickness.
This made Number 6 very happy and he began singing a song that went something like:
I love Mommy.
Mommy is so nice.
My Mommy loves me.
She always takes care of me.
She is the best mommy in the wooooooooooorld.
I love Mommyyyyyyy.
About ten minutes before we had to leave, he started looking at an origami book he took out from the school library.
I asked him if he had everything he needed to be ready for school, and he told me he just had to fill his water bottle.
He wanted to look at the book.
“You might want to get your water bottle so you don’t forget it, ” I suggested.
He ignored me.
About two minutes before we had to leave, Number 6 asked me if I could explain something he didn’t quite understand in his origami book, and I told him we didn’t have time before we had to leave, but I’d be happy to look at it with him after school.
This answer was not acceptable to him, and a level 10 meltdown ensued.
Number 6 is pretty into origami right now.
So the meltdown continued and escalated, and I silently got my things ready for the gym.
When there was a pause in the volume, I let him know I understood he really wanted to figure it out and I knew he was super frustrated and angry.
Then I told him I was ready to go and I’d be out in the car waiting for him.
This freak out had thrown us off schedule, so I texted my friend and let her know I’d be late.
A minute or two later, Number 6 walked down the front walkway toward the car, all the while looking dejectedly at the ground.
He climbed into the car singing a new song.
I hate my mommy.
Mommy is so mean.
My mommy is the meanest mommy in the whole world.
Mommy is so meeeeeeeaaaaannnnn.
I hate my mommmmmyyyyyyy.
“What happened to the I Love Mommy song?” I asked him.
“It’s not a song any more, ” he told me matter-of-factly.
We drove the seven minute drive to school just listening to the radio.
By the time we pulled up to the school, Number 6 had fallen in love with me again.
He climbed out of the car and said, “I love you, Mommy!”
Then he realized something and his face dropped.
“I forgot my water bottle,” he said quite sadly.
That I love you, Mommy had gotten to me.
Since I was going to the gym right from there, I had my water bottle in my bag. I thought about letting him have it.
But it is his job to fill and pack his water bottle.
He had also made me late, and if I rescued him this time I’d inadvertently be sending him the message that I was okay with that.
So I reminded him that he could use the water fountain, told him I loved him, and watched him walk into the school, water bottle-less.
I was kind.
And you know what?
He made it home from school and he was just fine. He wasn’t dehydrated or in need of an IV for fluids.
And as soon as he hung up his backpack, he went right back to his origami book, happy as a clam.
I’m pretty sure Number 6 will remember his water bottle tomorrow.
I’ll remember to enforce a new rule:
No origami books allowed on weekdays until after 4 pm.