Sometimes I am just completely baffled by how ridiculous my children sound as they whine about their privileged little lives. For example, we have Disneyland passes. The cheap ones with the summer and weekends blocked out, but still, Disneyland passes. Some families will scrimp and save for years to finally take a hallowed pilgrimage to Disneyland. For my kids, it’s something we do on random weeknights. And yet, now they’ve come to expect it EVERY weeknight. And oh, the whining that some nights are actually spent at home. It’s like they’ve lost the will to live if we don’t get to go to Disneyland and they are forced to play in the backyard. ON THEIR TRAMPOLINE. OR WITH THEIR MYRIAD OF TOYS, BIKES, AND SCOOTERS.
Speaking of the myriad of scooters, here is another example. One of the perks of my blog is that a couple times a year, I do a toy review. As such, we have just about every scooter known to man. We have the standard Razor, the junior one, the one that swivels and the one that writes with chalk. The one thing we don’t have? The one that makes sparks. A fact that Jafta likes to remind me of EVERY DAY.
Incidentally, the other day I asked India what she wants to be when she grows up, and she told me, “I want to stay home and get toys in the mail like you do.”
Lovely. I’m really keeping their expectations in check.
I sometimes wonder if all of this fun stuff is just setting them up for disappointment. For example, the kids and I have been invited to a couple cool press events where a character celebrates a birthday. We got to go to Elmo’s birthday party and Strawberry Shortcakes birthday party . . . and do they marvel at how lucky they are to get invited to such a thing? No. Now every time they watch a cartoon or a movie I get to field questions about why they haven’t been invited to that character’s birthday. Like they think I have Diego, Rapunzel, and Phineas and Ferb on speed-dial.
And I rue the day I took them to get Starbucks cakepops after school, because now every single day since then the ride home from school is full of wailing and gnashing of teeth over it not being a cakepop day.
I often think that we would all be happier if I did nothing special for them, ever. If the backyard trampoline and the hardshell pool from Ace Hardware was all they knew, surely the whining would be less pronounced?
(Because let’s not even talk about the complaining about our lack of a real pool since our trip to Palm Springs).
And yes, the irony is not lost on me that I’m now whining about their whining about all of these first-world problems. I just don’t want to be raising spoiled, ungrateful children. And sometimes I have the sinking feeling that I am.
Today I think the insanity hit it’s peak. Jafta tagged along with me to my last conference, and now India and Kembe are constantly brining up the fact that they have never been on a trip with me. And while I recognize that they feel jilted, at the same time, I want to scream, What four-year-old goes on a solo trip with their mom? I NEVER WENT ON A TRIP WITH MY MOM. What world are you two living in? But in their minds, this is a perfectly reasonable request, and the fact that Jafta has a father-son campout this weekend brought their angst about a trip to a fever-pitch. Somehow I found myself trying to appease them by searching for cheap airfare to any city I could find. I found some $20 flights to Vegas and a cheap hotel off the strip with a pool, and as I’m thinking through booking “our special trip” suddenly I was like, what am I doing? No. Just, no. I do not need to book a flight to Vegas for two preschoolers just because they feel that their life is unfair.
But I did make plans for Karis to stay with grandma, and I booked a room at the local Howard Johnson’s for Saturday night – just me and the twins. Which I’m sure will be hugely disappointing because we will be driving there instead of taking an airplane. LIFE IS JUST SO HARD.