Tuesday, November 13, 2007

That Was Your Mother

With both boys in bed (although admittedly, Beckett, who is cutting two new bottom teeth, is whining in his sleep and keeping me on edge in case he needs me to pick him up), Scott not home, and dinner in the oven, I thought I'd have something amazing to say.

Yet, the only thing that springs to mind is the fact that I realize I have achieved the ability to psychoanalyze myself. I'm guessing most of us have that ability but may not realize it.

Tonight, I was beating myself up for getting angry and frustrated with Brendan for refusing to take his medicine. He has the croup and the doc prescribed an Albuterol inhaler for him. She also told me to give him Benadryl for his runny nose and to help him sleep so that I could get some sleep after three nights in a row with barely any of the sweet stuff. Yesterday and last night he amazed me with how readily he let me administer both medications plus Tylenol Meltaways. He did better than he has ever done at taking medicine. He slept most of the night in his own bed, then after being awake for about an hour or so, came into our bed around 4 a.m. and slept there until 9 a.m. When he awoke he was a little whiny, but after a bath, he was practically his normal chipper, super active self. And he wasn't coughing. Yay.

It all fell apart about 5 p.m.

So, now, picking up where I left off last night at 8:19, I have been awake for most of the time since then. Scott got home, we had dinner, talked a bit, and then all hell broke loose. Teething baby awoke around 10 and was up until midnight at which point Brendan woke up crying and was awake every hour from that point on until 6:00 a.m. when he finally went to sleep and slept until almost 9 a.m.

Much of the night was spent battling him to use the inhaler and take his Benadryl. I was, at one point, wondering where he got all the extra arms and legs he was punching me with as I attempted to administer the inhaler. And I was furious.

I realized.... And this was the original point of my post...that Brendan's refusal to take medicine and his willingness to put up a physical fight infuriates me so much because it reminds me of my mother. She was, as I have mentioned before, a juvenile diabetic and had been on insulin since she was 13 years old. When I was 9, I learned how to give her shots because she would sometimes just decide she was tired of taking her insulin. I learned how to force open her mouth and give her sugar or orange juice when she was in insulin shock (low blood sugar). I learned that a knee in the chest can hold a person down, pretty much, unless she's so outraged and messed up by her illness that she doesn't recognize her own daughter and throws her to the ground. I learned that if you can tell that's about to happen, a knee to the throat can stop it.

What I learned last night as I was about to put my knee into my son's chest to force him to take his medicine is how angry I still am at my mom for being such a fucking brat and baby all her life. Just take the goddamned medicine. Nobody cares that you wish you were normal. So do the rest of us. Fuck you.

Just try to be normal. Is it that fucking hard? Take your goddamned medicine and don't expect your child to be the adult! Nobody wants to be sick and if you just take the fucking medicine you can be relatively normal. You jackass.

And so, I realized last night that a lot of my frustration and anger at Brendan for not getting with the program has roots that run long and deep. I just want him to take his medicine and be normal. I want him to learn that there are rules and that if you just follow the rules, life is so much easier. And happier. For everyone.

I got really angry at my Uncle T. a couple of weeks ago because I told him some Brendan anecdote and he said that Brendan sounded just like my mom. I was so mad I wanted to hang up on him, but I love him so I didn't. But last night I saw it for myself, whether it's really there or imagined from too little sleep. And it just makes me angrier. I've never wanted to break someone's spirit before, but I cannot tolerate a child who is as selfish and self-centered as my mother was. My grandparents never dared to break her; my grandfather spoiled and coddled her because she was sick. And I paid for that. I'll be damned if I'm going to let this child turn out the way that she did.

Sick or not, he's going to start towing the line.

1 comment:

rennratt said...

The selfishness and attitude have more to do with his age and his illness than anything.

Your being tired is also a factor.

Your son will become a well mannered young man in time. I promise.

You and Scott are doing an excellent job.

I'm sorry that your boys are so sick!

If lived closer, homemade chicken soup would be sent STAT.