By late, I don't mean 5 or 10 minutes. That kind of late usually irritates me. Or even 15 or 20 minutes. By that time, I'm starting to get really annoyed. 30 minutes late - which has never happened before, except for the time I got stuck in the snow in the driveway - makes me quite furious.
But, oh, no no no. You have no idea what I mean when I say "late". This morning, one darling child made us thirty-eight minutes late for school. Yes, you read that right - I pulled out of the driveway 38 minutes later than I normally do. "Livid" is the only way to describe my feelings.
This particular child is the one who always makes us late. Always. But never this late. This morning, it was, "My boots are wet". So, wear your shoes. "My shoes are wet, too." Then wear your church shoes. "My church shoes are too tight, and besides I have PE today." Too bad! Wear them anyway and bring your tennis shoes and hope they dry by the time you have PE. And yes, these were her only 3 options. She is the queen of picky when it comes to shoes (and most other clothing, for that matter). I can -without exaggeration - visit 10 shoe stores in an afternoon with her, and she will still walk away empty-handed because "this one's too tight" or "this one's too loose" or "this one is too low at the heel" or "this one pinches my toes", etc. etc. etc. (And believe me, I could go on with the etc.'s, but you get the point.)
So, for 38 minutes, she chose to simply NOT put on shoes or boots. I tried to put them on her feet for her, but she kicked them off. And she's too big for me to carry her out the door. So, I fought, struggled, bribed, argued, for 38 minutes. I finally called my husband and asked him to talk to her. He did. He told her she had to wear her boots. She hung up and still refused.
I'm not sure how I finally got her into the car, but I did. We usually pray together on the way to school, but I told everyone I was far too angry to pray so they had just better be quiet on the way to school. And pray that I don't purposely run into a telephone pole.
In all seriousness, I would appreciate input on how to deal with this kind of defiance. She is our toughest kid in terms of discipline because she is never a peaceful recipient. And I realize that most kids don't enjoy punishment and probably make some fuss about receiving it. But if your kids throws a tantrum, then my kid has a thermonuclear meltdown. Yes, it's really that bad. And it's not that we don't punish her, but we have yet to find something that actually works long-term AND that doesn't threaten our hearing because of the violent screaming that results.
What was worse about this AM was that I had been up for 2 hours in the night with extremely uncomfortable indigestion, and then the coffee I made this morning was weak: Double Whammy! (I never make weak coffee! What the heck???)
Anyway, after I dropped off the kids, I drove through Tim Horton's for medicinal purposes. It's a good thing that I had let my anger cool a little, though. The way I felt when I left the house - did I mention we were 38 minutes late!!! - I could have easily screeched into the drivethrough lane and yelled, "Give me some damn coffee and no one gets hurt!" However, I was settled enough to drive in like a sane human being, which is a very good thing, since there were 4 or 5 police cars in the parking lot. (My first thought was, "what the heck is going on here?", but then I quickly realized, "Ooohh, it's a donut shop.")
So, I got my strong coffee, the best breakfast sandwich in the world, a blueberry muffin, and some OJ.
That was 2 hours ago.
I think my blood pressure is finally starting to come back down.