I drove over the crest of a hill today and there were a couple of people were standing in the middle of the road. It was unsurprising. They were taking pictures. This fall’s been so gorgeous that it’s tough not to stop in your tracks and try to capture it. I did it, too, walking home from J’s school the other day.
Alas, I spent most of today inside, hanging out with child who deeply resented missing school and being called sick. Let’s just say that there was a messy late-night incident that precluded sending this child to school in good conscience. Which was particularly irritating because she really did seem just as fine as she insisted that she was. I would have vastly preferred to send her, myself, especially since I got a lot of, “Why do you hate me?”
“Why do you hate me?” is an oft-repeated phrase in our household these days. It’s the response to many situations, such as when:
–I follow school district guidelines on sickness policies.
–I win a round of the card game Spit.
–I don’t know where an item of clothing is located.
–The household dessert selection is limited to Oreos, fruit, and chocolate chips.
–I am too engrossed in my work to respond immediately to a request for assistance.
–I stop reading a book aloud.
–I mention that keeping a large bowl nearby isn’t an unreasonable request after a midnight laundry-and-mopping extravaganza.
–I declare name-calling to be unacceptable.
–I won’t buy a Pottery Barn rug.
–I stop rubbing my child’s back.
–I do not welcome dirty socks on the dinner table.
As you can see, today I had a great deal of hate in my heart. Which is surprising, given the beautiful day. Who can be hateful when the sky is so blue and the trees are so lovely? Apparently I can. Eventually, I decided that we absolutely had to get outside. There was some speculation that this insistence, too, was motivated by hate.
I sighed and decided to remove my spiteful self for a short bike ride. A little deep breathing and hard pedaling and I forgot all about the hate.
In fact, I could have sworn that my first glimpse of that bouncing sunshine pony tail and even that little smirk brought on a surge of love.
But I’m probably wrong about that.
Because in addition to being hateful, I’m not the sharpest knife in the drawer.