Monday, January 14, 2013

The Boys in the House

I have two boys in my family: my husband and my son.  As numbers go, this isn’t too bad.  They are not too hard to handle, and there are two girls in the house too, so I am not often outnumbered.  Both of my boys are pretty reasonable individuals. My husband, despite his addiction to asking questions, is an emotionally even-Steven who hardly ever gets ruffled unless things don’t go perfectly for him, which they usually do, because he does most everything perfectly.

My son is also pretty reasonable, even as an 11-year-old, except for the times when his emotional state rises and falls in rapid fire succession and we all get a front-row seat to the one-man show I like to call Rage and Crying.  This can happen at any time, like in the middle of a spirited discussion with his sister about how she stores her Barbie dolls’ clothing, or like when I ask him to turn off his computer when he still has four minutes of screen time left.

What can be hard to handle, however, is when both boys are home with me at the same time, and the other girl is not here to run interference.  Especially if the boys didn’t really plan on being at home in the first place, but they are due to plans falling through or other things like illness or broken down cars, which is what is happening today.  Right now.

The boys in my house are like dogs: they require constant companionship, recognition, and reward.  They are needier than newborns, these boys.  They need a job to do, and if they did not plan to be here on an extended basis but are because of uncontrollable outside events, I am relied upon to occupy them. 

And that is exhausting.  And I am kind of lazy to boot, so I don’t enjoy the extra work it takes to entertain a couple of men who don’t know how to put their time in peacefully and quietly at home and instead spend their unoccupied time wandering around aimlessly and getting into my business.  Especially when I’m also not feeling well.  I mean, I’m already kind of resenting the fact that no one around here would eat anything but potato chip crumbs and 100-calorie snack packs unless I lovingly prepared vats of homemade family chow that they still turn up their noses at in favor of the boxes of Little Debbies I keep on hand for when I am jonesing for a swiss roll the kids’ lunch boxes.

So what is an overworked, mildly ill mom to do?

So far, all I have come up with is to hide in the TV room, watch taped awards show ceremonies and HBO on demand, blog a little, and ride the day out.



  1. My daughter is way more needy than my sons are. She can talk my ears off. The main problem is that I am the exact same way - or at least I was as a kid - so there's the added guilt of having given her my genes. :-)

    1. Mom guilt sure does know how to worm its way into just about every facet of being a mother, doesn't it?

  2. Oh, the guilt is a horrible monster, isn't it? I think it's part of the new mother package you get installed with the baby. Honestly. Sorry you are feeling under the weather - bad enough alone, but with two sad boys in addition? Hope they found a project!

    1. They did! It's called work and school. :)

      Funny, I'm feeling much better today.