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Wednesday, April 30, 2008

That Whole Adam and Eve, Thing

Conner and I have been getting along so well during John's latest Tdy that I'm almost afraid to say anything. It used to be that I could time how long it would take for us to get into our groove: two weeks on average, for any trip over four weeks. Which is, really, about every trip. Things aren't all hunky-dory, but for the most part he has really stepped up to the plate: doing the dishes, etc, when I ask him; acknowledging discipline when it's deserved and not just dishing out attitude; helping with his younger siblings... And we've been enjoying time together in the evenings, too, after his siblings are in bed. Time he would typically be spending with his dad doing daddy-son, things. Bittersweet, these times of separation can be.

It's Olivia who's giving me the headache. I know it's typical for this age (5), but lawd-o-mercy that girl is giving me a run for my money: sassing; lying and sneaking around; flat out blowing me off when I tell her to do something; and man can she take forever to get ready to go do anything. It took us three days to get around to the "seed store" like she's been pining to do because every morning by the time she got her shoes on we didn't have time before Sean-Peter was due off the bus.

But the real proverbial straw was yesterday when I let her take pictures with my camera, something I've let her do from time to time with no real problem. But yesterday. Yesterday she gave it back and I discovered that she had deleted all the files. Every picture I had not gotten the chance to download, gone. Which was everything since our trip to Alabama: adorable pictures of the kids hugging on daddy the morning he left; beautiful ones in perfect lighting "exploring in the woods" by Conner's Scout campsite; Conner decked out in his new Scout gear; Sean-Peter in all his glee and glory playing with some new Thomas stuff I totally scored at the thrift store on base. All. Gone.

I was complaining about this to John, how I know this is a normal stage and I really do understand that. But my pictures! He summarized it in his typical comical fashion, saying it's the whole Adam and Eve Thing: No matter that she had taken pictures numerous times before with nary a hiccup. This time she just couldn't help but wonder, What would really happen if I touched these buttons here that my mommy told me not to? I mean, what's the big deal?

And because of the whole Adam and Eve, Thing, her imperfect mommy told her in no uncertain terms what really happened and how it was irreversible and couldn't be fixed and we could never get them back and I could never trust her to take pictures with my camera again. Ever. Goodbye Garden of Eden. So great was her sorrow Olivia fled from my fiery sword and cried her broken heart all the way to her room while I mourned my loss and pondered whether I had been too hard on her.

And the drama never stops. Just this evening, all the dishes were put away and the kitchen put in some semblance of order -- save Olivia's plate, which still holds most of her dinner. We're trying to get out the door to take Conner to a youth group at a friend's church, and Olivia's trying to grab a banana.

Okay, I know it's a banana. But work with me here. It's the principle.

"I'm starving."

"So eat your dinner."

"I don't want my dinner!"

"Fine, but you're not having a banana either. Eat your dinner, then you can have a banana."

"I'm never eating my dinner! I'm never going to eat it again! And I'm not eating my lunch or my breakfast or...anything! I'm only going to eat a banana!"

I would like to end this by posting a photo for your viewing pleasure that Olivia took of herself. We were rolling on the floor laughing at what was the most hysterically bizarre, goofy expression that I'd ever before seen on her face, and that's saying a lot.

But she deleted it.


Anonymous said...

Ug....the loss of pictures is painful. But you're so funny!!!

Jennifer said...

I stumbled upon your blog from Jenny at "One Thing". I thought my preschooler was the only child to say "I'm never, ever doing that again." (like eat dinner) or "I'm never, ever going to see you again." (b/c he was disciplined). Thanks for making me laugh.

Mrs. Staff Sergeant said...

Oh boy, not the pictures! I would just about die!

Sorry she's been so...difficult lately. Gee, I cant wait until my kids start with all that bologna! I'm already seeing hints of it in Dillon :P

I love the "Adam and Eve" analogy! I'll have to remember that one!

Emily, RN, BSN said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Emily, RN, BSN said...

Oh Jolyn, I feel your pain. This was my feeling after someone had broken into my car and taken all of my CD's-including ALL of my ones with Australia pictures on it. And I KNEW they were all just dumped in a dumpster somewhere. I'm still mourning my loss as well, but I have learned to upload my pictures after each event onto my computer so that if there is such an incident of "accidental deletion," the loss is minimal. haha Just my words of advice from previous experience! But I do understand your misery and upset-ness. What a stinker.

OHmommy said...

Oh no... she deleted it? LOL!

Jolyn said...

Oh, Emily. That is bad.

Anonymous said...

Oh, what a little stinker! For what it's worth, I think you handled it well.
Things like this always seem to happen when Dad's gone, right? We're not even military and I know this.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps Olivia is suffering from alergies. That always changes my kids personalities.

Scott and Hannah said...

Ah, the joys of parenting and the adventures I have to look forward to. That story was crazy! I can't really say anything because I can't stop laughing. Is that mean? I do feel for you. One day you will laugh at me too I am sure.