Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Big mistake.

At Jones Beach with my daughter and her friend, sans my son.
I told them all week they could invite a friend, but also that at 9:30 am sharp I wanted to leave the house (parking fills quickly). My son's friend cancelled last night. I reminded him several times we had to wake up early; it was the last thing I said to him before I went to bed.
This morning, my daughter and I woke up at eight; I started making blueberry pancakes for breakfast. At 8:30, I told my daughter to roust my son.
This was my first mistake; I should've went myself to wake him. She returned, saying he had told her, "I don't have to get up."
Now I was angry; we had already fed the animals and still needed to prepare lunch, pack the cooler, get the beach stuff out of the garage, plus get the towels, lotion, etc.
I ran up to his room to get him; he was sitting up in bed. As usual, there were no sheets on the bed. I should've overlooked this, but since I was already annoyed with him, I started yelling about how we could wash his sweat out of the sheets, but not out the mattress. His reaction was to lay back down and ignore me.
By 9:15, my girl and I had everything ready. My son was in the bathroom, and wouldn't answer when I banged on the door.
At 9:30, he sat down to eat a bowl of cereal. I told him he had exactly 5 minutes to get ready. He gave me a casual look and announced he wasn't coming. I said, "fine" and went to the car. My daughter looked unhappy. I knew this had gone all wrong, and would ruin the day. I took a deep breath, went back and told him my son just that; also that I was sure I wouldn't be hating on him by the time we got to the beach.
He simply said, "I'm eating my breakfast, and I'm not going."
I tried a second time. "I'll give you five minutes to finish. Let's go." But the anger and aggression were still very much in my voice; it sounded more like a threat than an invitation.
"I choose not to go."
So we left without him, but not before I ruined his day: I unplugged the whole Verizon system, even pulling out the emergency battery pack. He had no tv or internet. I doubted he'd figure out how to reconnect it.
I kept waiting for my phone to ring, with him panicking about the cut off. It suddenly dawned on me I had cut the phone service as well. I started to worry about a terrible accident, or him deliberately setting the house on fire in his rage, but shook the idea out of my mind.
The worst is yet to come; I can't imagine the war this will start.
Plain and simple: I failed. I wanted the three of us to have a fun day at the beach, and that didn't happen.
No, my son didn't get up this morning as I asked him to do. But I'm supposed to be the adult and not sweat the small stuff, to make sure that our family has a nice day.

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