Grace had her "princess crowns" put on her molars on this morning. I couldn't help but giggle as the Kool-Aid anesthesia set in. I was sitting with her and she was her normal cheerful self when suddenly, she fell off the stool she was sitting on. As I went to console my normally snuggly baby girl, she threw me a *go to hell* look, grabbed her blanket and hid behind the chair.
Hmmm... could my child be an angry drunk?
The next thing I know, she's teetering around the room and slurring words. "Wwwwwhhhheeeennnn aaaarrreeee ttthhheeeeyyy ggggooiiiinnngg tooo fixxxxxsssss mmmmyy tttteeeefffff????"
Poor baby. They pulled her from my arms and said she was going to be fine.
Ok. But what about the grouchy child I had this afternoon? The one who couldn't stop crying and saying, "Mommy, I no like my princess crowns! I no like my teef!! My teef hurt!"
It probably didn't help matters when Rose informed Grace that while she was sleeping, they actually gave her shots in her mouth before putting on the crowns.
With a look of complete shock and dismay, Grace said, "That's why it hurts?!"
Other than that, Rose was a sweet big sister today. They played Barbies and anything else they could to distract from the mouth pain. Tonight we are attending a Back to School party that one of Rose's friends is throwing. Good. Another distraction.
The ex did come to the appointment with us this morning. Its weird because we show up at these things as "Mommy" and "Daddy" and everyone assumes we're a couple. I mean, we're very pleasant with each other, have a great rapport, joke around and are really respectful towards each other. Our friends don't quite know how to act around us because we don't seem any different than we used to be as a married couple. Still, when we're somewhere together like at Rose's back to school night or Grace's dental appointment, I have to stop myself from saying, "By the way, we aren't together." Not that it matters. But its just one of those things that feels.... odd.
I had to have a talk with the ex because he frequently complains that the girls act up around him. I've seen them. They do seem very restless around him. I finally asked Rose about it.
"Daddy's always yelling at us. Even when we're playing."
Yeah, I can see that. He does seem very impatient with them when they're being silly. I'm trying to remind my kids that he won't want to spend time around them if they never mind him. I made Rose a deal that if she minded him and was a good big sister, I would tell him to be more aware of his yelling.
I told him what she said this morning and asked that he yell a little more sparingly. "Choose your battles," I told him. He didn't seem offended or upset. He also seemed a little more patient when Rose was spinning around and around the dentist's lobby. I hope he remembers. And I hope she does too.
I also informed him the other day that our divorce decree says he's supposed to have them for a month during the summer. I didn't realize this and only requested a week from him in the past month. We were both surprised at my new revelation but he seemed both shocked and a little put out. I tried not to get angry about his response. He is currently living with his older brother who is single and has no children. I think he gets a little tense with the kids around his brother's house. I think his brother gets a little annoyed, then the ex gets annoyed, he takes it out on Rose and she takes it out on Grace. Shit rolls downhill, doesn't it?
Ah well, hopefully all of this will work out soon enough. Hopefully he'll get his own place soon and they'll all have their own space. Then again, I have to let the three of them establish a relationship on their own and without my input, right?
Still, I can't help but think about the role he plays in their lives. I mean, ultimately they will define all of their relationships with men based on their relationship with their father. I know he loves them. I know he wants what's best for them. I just don't know how to help him show them all of that. And is it my job to do so?