Wednesday, August 30, 2006

My stomach hurts. That usually happens when I'm nervous.

Maya's been at her BD's house for weeks and this is the last leg of her stay. This is when I get antsy. I miss her a lot. Also, it sounds like she's on the eve of some hormonal changes; general attitude coping, being an ingrate, etc. Normal stuff . . . I guess. This Teen Onslaught stuff scares me shitless. And she’s only eleven. I know it'll be fine, but I'm nervous. And if changes are happening to her, I'm sick of being away from her to talk it out face to face, to hold her. I miss her. She also doesn't want to do Tae Kwon Do anymore, which makes my stomach hurt; makes me sad. As a mami, I have to respect her feelings and seriously consider pulling her from the sport. But I also know that disappointment comes from everywhere and sometimes we have to stick it out and work through that.

Over the weekend, I had a nightmare that I've had six or seven times before. In the dream I beat Maya. I don't ever talk about this reoccuring dream because I hate it that much. In it, I get frustrated uncontrollably and then I pound and slap her instead. Like my mother used to do. And then in the dream, I can't stop hitting her. Like my mother. I wake up sick to my stomach so thankful to be awake, and nervous that I'd ever get that frustrated.

My stomach hurts.

I registered Mina for school last week. And there is no more room left in the afterschool care program for second graders. I thought, I'm seriously fucked. "What is a working parent supposed to do when her seven-year old gets out at 2:45 in the afternoon?" I asked. "We can put your daughter on the wait list," they said. I said, "What are her chances?" They said, "She's eleventh on the list." Basically, I'm fucked. I've been wracking my brain since. I have a very good job, but shit like this turns me into a lunatic mama bear; makes me want to tell my bosses that This Is The Way It Is and I'm leaving early every single day to get my baby. But then practicality sets in and I can't mess with my set up right now. I just can't. I'll figure it out. But my stomach hurts. I thought of all the mothers with way fewer options than I, single and broke and taking chances with day care because of no other choice. My stomach hurts for them too.

Yesterday I stood in the New Enrollment line at the junior high that I attended 27 years ago. Maya will attend this same school starting next week. I let a flood of middle-school memories, good and nerve-wracking, crash over me as I waited. Then I spotted some alpha girls roaming the halls in a pack, no more than thirteen wearing daisy dukes and hard-core sassiness. And my stomach hurt. I was intimidated by these girls back when I was a kid and I felt the same yesterday as I tried to absorb some of these feelings that are upcoming for Maya. Middle school is the beginning of female mental warfare and I contemplated home schooling as I inched along the New Enrollment line. Nervous and shrinking in the presence of preteens, I called Maya on the phone. I told her school would be great. And tough. I said, "Man, you just gotta be yourself, ok?" And she said "OK, Mami!" so cheerfully that my heart hurt. Made me close my eyes and wish her home. After registration was done, I went to the bathroom and in the stall I noticed a little pair of pink underwear wadded up and stuffed behind the toilet seat along with a paper-wrapped pad. I looked down and saw no trash can in the stall. And I thought that was cruel. A twelve year old doesn't know that every girl’s stall should have a trash can. She just feels humiliated by having to stuff her still-child's underwear somewhere.

It's all going to be ok, I know. Doesn't mean things won't stress me or things aren't tough. God knows growing up and The Parenting Juggle ain't easy.


Heather said...

Whew!! I feel for you. It will all work out somehow. Parenting is hard. There is alot going on all at once with you and your kids. You'll get through it together and all will be great.

acumamakiki said...

Oh this made MY stomach hurt. I worry so much about the teen years and felt the angst of standing in the middle school line, seeing the 'plastics' in their sassy clothes and attitudes. You're such a great mama that I know you'll shine thru the difficult times that might happen. I can't imagine how it must be, when your kid wants to stop doing the thing they've been doing forever (tae kwan do) although I hear you in letting her have a say. When Ava didn't want to go to ballet class, I stood there threatening and removing privledges and I had to kick myself in the ass for being such an ass. Once I relented and realized what my m.o. was, I stopped being that mom and let her be. The best part of parenting I think, is figuring out how to be a better person.

Dude, I'm so in that working mom trying to figure out what to do with my kid when she gets out of elementary school. For some delusional reason, I thought all my problems would be over once she went to, wrong.

Anonymous said...

I feel for you...I worry about that coming day as well (and my daughter is only 13 months...what can I say? I'm an advanced worrier). I can imagine how you feel...especially trying to juggle the changes going on with both of your daughters. I hope you find a wonderful afterschool program. And you have such a strong sense of yourself and your voice--you are a very good role model for Maya and will help her remain true to yourself in middle school.

junkie said...

my 11 year old daughter just started middle school in august, top it off it is her 1st year in public school after being in private school up until now. i was a freaking nervous wreck.

as it turned out...i was the one worrying and stressing while she couldn't wait...and she hasn't been disappointed yet. well, not anymore than our tweens are ever stressed about one thing or another these days.

i just found your blog the other day so have only started reading thru your archives, but i added you to my bloglines immediately...b/c i knew i wanted to read more and keep up w/ you.

my point to that being...your love and support of your children/family comes screaming through. and that? is what will keep them through the dark days/nights...whether that be middle school or anything else that will come their way. keep it up...all of you will always reap the rewards.

Melinda said...

Oh man. Junior high is the worst. There's just no way to escape it, I think -- you have to emerge on the other side so you can delight in telling the horror stories for the rest of your life.
You have done nothing but set your daughters up for success. Seriously. With you behind them, they are going to be just fine.

Dori said...

This made my stomach hurt too. But Maya is so lucky to have a mom who gets it. Plus, there are so many pre-teens like her who are plucky and athletic. It's just a matter of finding them.

pixielyn said...

I feel for you Madness,mine is not a girl but a little manlet. A budding man.
I have incredibly scary dreams too, dont worry, your subconsious is letting you deal in a way that is not harmful to your girls, it will all get worked out in your head first.
I'm greatful that you share these posts, thankyou. I think sometimes that I'm the only extreme worrier in the world.
My son had to drop out of karate last summer due to hip surgery and when he went to go back this spring after recovery they wanted to drop him all the way back to yellow and make him work all the way back up again and he quit. Nothing we could do could make him do it. I panicked thinking that if he didnt finish it that he would consider himself a failure later on and that karate is so important for self esteem.... well you know the issues... but instead he wanted to do fencing. *sigh* so we regrouped our thinking and let him start fencing. He was so humiliated by having to start over with the beginners that I thought that he was right and pushing him was making him a hater. Its hard to be a parent. My stomach hurts all the time too.......