I don’t know how things work at your house, but at Casa de Hall, morning meltdowns are par for the course. They don’t happen every day, but they happen often enough that I’m not surprised when they do. But I was completely unprepared for the magnitude of today’s tantrum. All over a tattoo.
Last night, I had to run to the store for lunch supplies. When Kelley got home from work, I served the kids dinner and left him to supervise and feed himself. When I walked through the door, Sydney greeted me, holding a washcloth against her cheek. I immediately thought it was an ice pack, because that’s the kind of thing that would’ve made sense. Instead it was a tattoo. On her face.
Now, I’m not going to hold Daddy completely responsible for this nonsense. And here’s why. As the mom, I should know better. When I walked through the door at 7:23pm to see her applying a tattoo (a Monster High tattoo, no less) to her face, I should have given her a heads up that she’d have to wash it off before school. But no. I made the mistake of thinking I could deal with it in the morning. Rookie mistake.
Now, normally, I’d attribute The Husband’s lack of judgment in this situation to the fact that he was focused on the National Championship Game. But the reality is, he lives in what I refer to as “The Bubble”. The Bubble is where people who have very little to worry about other than themselves live. And because they don’t have to worry about things that occur outside The Bubble, they have trouble seeing past the boundaries of The Bubble. Tattoos on the face on a Monday night? Outside The Bubble.
15 minutes later, the groceries were put away and I was knee-deep in “OHMAHGAWDGOTOBED!!” madness and I had truly forgotten about the tattoo. In fact, I honestly can’t even recall seeing it as Sydney got ready for bed. Of course, it could have been because, I was more concerned with getting the kids in bed so Kelley could watch the game than inspecting faces. The Husband helped Sydney brush her teeth and I helped Myles with his, which is probably another reason I didn’t notice. And for whatever reason, The Bigs spared us their normal “Can I have some water? Can we read? Sydney turned off the light. Myles won’t stop talking” Whack-A-Mole routine so I didn’t see Sydney again until I woke her up for school.
I walked into Sydney’s room around 6:50am for her first wake-up call and when I called her name, she immediately groaned. You never know what mood she’ll wake up in, so I quickly told her to get up and then I headed to the shower.
15 minutes later, I was dressed and about to go make lunches. I called down the hall to make sure she was up and still hadn’t remembered about the tattoo. By the time I finished, it was 7:25am and we had roughly 15 minutes before we needed to leave. I headed back to my room to wait for Sydney so that I could do her hair.
About 2 minutes later, she walked in my room and as I said, “Have you washed your face and brushed your teeth?”, I noticed the tattoo. That’s also about the time she realized the tattoo wasn’t gonna fly.
Me: Sydney, you’re going to have to wash that tattoo off your face.
Immediately, the crocodile tears began to well in her eyes.
M: I’m sorry Baby Girl, but you can’t wear a tattoo to school.
Sydney: But Myles is …
M: Sydney, Myles’ tattoo is on his hand. Yours is on your face.
S: *crying* Why didn’t you tell me?
M: Sydney, you had already put the tattoo on when I got home.
S: But Daddy said I could.
Daddy, who was conveniently in the shower. *side eye*
M: I’m sorry, Mama. I know you’re sad but you cannot go to school with a tattoo on your face. You just can’t.
S: *yelling* Why are you doing this to me? You are SO mean!
Yeah, yeah. Save it, Sister. You haven’t seen mean!
5 minutes later and she still hadn’t made any moves toward the bathroom. I found her sitting in her room, crying.
M: Sydney, we have to leave in 10 minutes. You still have to wash your face, brush your teeth and I need to do your hair. Get moving.
S: I just don’t want to wash off my tattoo. It’s not fair. Daddy let me put it on.
M: Well, Daddy made a mistake and now you have to wash it off. Hurry up!
S: You are ruining my life! This is the worst day ever! I never want to talk to you again!
M: Sydney. You have now spent 15 minutes stomping and pouting around and if you don’t get on it, you’re going to be late. I am in no mood for your theatrics today. I’m going to warm up the car and when I come back, I need to do your hair.
She cried while I did her hair and kept her word by not saying a thing. She left to get her stuff together and when I got downstairs, Kelley was talking to her:
Kelley: I’m the one who told you that you could put the tattoo on so don’t be mad at Mom.
S: But why did you let me put it on if I was gonna have to take it off?
K: I though you knew.
HUH??? Are you kidding me? You really thought your 6 year old had the forethought to realize that she couldn’t wear a tattoo on her FACE to school? The Bubble.
She was still crying as we walked out the front door and when we got to the car, I stopped and looked at her.
“Mama, I’m really sorry. I know that you wanted to keep the tattoo on, but it’s just not allowed. You can’t go to school with a tattoo on your face and if I’d been home last night, I would have told you that. I know it makes you sad and I’m really sorry about that because I don’t want you to be sad. But that’s just the way it is.”
She sniffled and then buried her face in my coat. I hugged her and then opened the door and as she climbed to the back of the truck, I handed her a tissue. She didn’t say a word to me the whole way to school and she was still giving me the evil eye when we pulled into the school driveway. Her eyes were red and her face still a little tear-stained as she put her coat on to get out of the car.
“Try and have a good day, Mama. I promise it’s gonna get better.”
“I love you, Mommy.”
“I love you too.”
And then she climbed out of the car and walked toward the school.
All of that over a tattoo. A temporary tattoo. A temporary Monster High tattoo, but temporary nonetheless. I’m envisioning this same scenario when she’s 16. The tattoo will not be temporary and I won’t be nearly as calm. Yay, motherhood.