I am beginning to believe my daughters were born without empathy. During the '
episode of the ear canal invader' yesterday, the girls were ............... well, being snitty and selfish. It began with Maddi texting me letting me know she was ready to be picked up from school. I called her to let her know Ben just accidentally stuck a BB in his ear and could she walk home (under a mile, here folks) or see if a friend could give her a ride. I knew she was home when I heard the door slam, bags dropped and her stomping into the living room to assess the situation.

Comments from Maddi:
"Why did he do that?"
"Is it stuck" "
Why couldn't you just put him in the car to come and pick me up?"
"Did you call Dad?"

Comments from Ellie:
"I didn't tell him to do it!"
"What color is it?"
"Is it something of mine stuck in his ear?"
"When can you paint my nails?"
"I'm hungry. What's for dinner."

During all of this chatter I was holding Ben, calling Dave, performing minor surgery, seeking advice from a friend .......... in other words; I was a LITTLE BUSY HERE, GIRLS!
The girls took the hint and made themselves scarce until daddy walked in the door. Suddenly the chatter picked up and then they wanted to know what daddy was going to do about it. Five people crowded in the bathroom ........ with sharp object and vacuums within reach.

Then it happened. The comment to send me over the edge:

Maddi: "When are we going to the library? I have to return my book tonight and I want to look around for a couple more."

:: blink blink ::

She said this as Dave and I were leaning over the tub trying to hold a slippery-wet-5-year-old-boy still while we shove sharp instruments in his ear.

:: blink blink again ::

Not to be outdone by her older sister, Ellie slips quietly out, then bag in a while later with a note for daddy.

If you are unable to read 2nd grade writing, here is the translation:

Dear Dad, I have not
had a good day. I've missed
you a lot today. More than you think
to. Every second of
the day. Even when you are
home right now. All I want
is to spend time with
Love, Ellie p.s.
I hope you can
spend time with me.

Bust. my. heart. open. Then, get very angry. Really? Right now? Do you not see your brother in the tub with the squirt bottle in his ear? I know, I get it. Kids express what the feel when they feel it and how they feel it. As parents, though, we can't meet the needs of all of our children at the same time. We have to step back, evaluate the situation and see what needs to be taken care of first. I thought Dave and I were doing pretty good with this step. I mean, the plastic BB had to come out before Maddi went to the library or Ellie received some attention from her daddy. Right?!

Dave and I looked at each other and locked eyes. Without saying a word out loud, the conversation began: "We're in this together, right?" "You got my back, right?" "If you don't yell at the girls I won't yell at the girls" "Did you take the trash out?" Oh, wait ........ not that last one. But definitely the first three. We were united.


  • Ben's ears are clear of all foreign objects
  • Ellie got her fingernails painted and a snuggle with Dad
  • Maddi went to the library to return her book and grab some new ones
  • Dave went to sleep at 9pm; worn out by all of the action
  • I tore apart my bathroom searching in the crevices of make-up bags and baskets hoping to find a Valium. Defeated, I resigned myself to a cup of ice cream and some time spent with my nose in a book.

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