Finding and Losing Serenity

Sunday was deeply dramatic. Long story short, M’s quit junior choir at church. There was not much explanation or communication ahead of time, so when we tried to force the issue, she ended up attending choir in such an actively miserable state that the choir director, one of her biggest fans, emailed me with a thanks-but-no-thanks. So that was awesome. There was poor handling all around. When the kids act like miserable human beings and I keep it together, I feel like an awesome superhero. Sunday was not one of those days.

So on Monday it was fortunate that I’d already planned to try  a yoga class at The Hot Yoga Zone, located in the Hannaford shopping center in Niskayuna. They opened in September and contributed come-and-bring-a-friend-free coupons to the Niskayuna Fall Fun Run, so of course I jumped on that. It was my first-ever hot yoga, and I liked it. I thought the teacher was excellent and the heat was satisfying. But I’m also cheap, and it’s $12/class or $140/month for unlimited classes. Although, is this a yoga thing? Because Soluna Yoga ain’t cheap, either. And the problem is that most gyms offer a few yoga classes for $15 or $20/month membership fees. So perhaps you’re paying for serenity? It was pretty serene.

An excellent and serene start to the day, except that I was very, very sleepy. I’d suffered from insomnia the night before (post Sunday stress + the caffeine from an abnormally large piece of leftover birthday cake–yes, I am that much of a caffeine lightweight), and it turns out that hot yoga followed by a shower is the perfect preparation for bed. Unfortunately, the class was at 9:30 am, so that didn’t go quite so well. Throughout the day I kept thinking, “I can’t possibly do another class at this time if it’s going to make me so sleepy.” And then I’d remember that I was up from 3-4:45 am, which was the more likely cause of my problem.

While the girls were still in school I ran to the library to pick up I’d Listen to My Parent If They’d Just Shut Up: What to Say and What Not to Say When Parenting Teens, by Anthony Wolf.  A friend recommended it when I was tearing my hair out on Sunday. I’m only a couple of chapters in, but I’m loving it so far. He’s very funny, so it’s entertaining as well as reassuring. And I know that it’s supposed to be a book on teenagers, but of course, my daughter is very advanced. Oh my gosh! In fact, this reminds me of a story from when M was about 3. She got angry at me for some reason. I can’t remember what, but she was mad, and that girl can hold a grudge. So we’d spent the better part of a day with her avoiding me and refusing to look me in the eye when we spoke and just generally trying to punish me for whatever I’d done that day. Then she came up to me and asked me very politely if I’d help her in the potty. She was at that age when — oh, how do I put this delicately? — in spite of general potty independence, there was the occasional need for some, umm, sanitary follow-up from the capable hands of an adult.  Anyway, she was so sweet and polite that as she leaned over and I wiped her attended to a pressing concern, I thought to myself, “Phew! I guess I’m finally forgiven.” Then, just as I finished up, she looked over her shoulder at me and hissed–yes, there’s not another appropriate verb for it–she hissed, “I. . . hate. . .  you.”

Yep, like I said, she’s always been very advanced. Or a sociopath. Or something.

Sometimes I’ll chat with another mother who’ll say that her sweet daughter is always so loving and has never said that she hates her mother, and I wonder to myself, what would that life be like? But maybe she’ll come out of it and be a delightful, reasonable, and fully-functional adult at 17. A mom can dream, can’t she?


  1. Mrs.H

    LOL, delayed in reading this. My girl has said that to us also, I think it started a little later for her though, she might have been 4 then. She is now 7 going on 14……..somedays 15….. 🙂

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