Friday, February 19, 2010

I have thrown down the gauntlet. Again.

It was all because of the Goldfish cracker crumbs floating in my water bottle on my nightstand.

And the stack of Dora books sitting next to our armoire.

And the mini Jar-Jar Binks figure that I tripped over on my bathroom rug.

And the half-filled sippy cup in pre-rot stage underneath our bed.

And the light saber in our closet, right next to my shoe organizer.

And my bed sheets and comforter thrown on my bedroom floor after little feet had a jumping party on our bed.

The camel's back was broken, and those were just a few of the straws.

Mama lost it.

I scooped up the offending toys, brought them out to the hallway outside my bedroom door, threw them down, balled up my fists, stomped my feet, and had an honest-to-goodness temper tantrum.

My crew was innocently sitting on the couch in the family room below watching television. I leaned over the railing and I yelled, "ENOUGH! THIS IS MY BEDROOM! AND DADDY'S BEDROOM! EVERYBODY OUT! ALL YOUR STUFF OUT! NO ONE IS ALLOWED IN HERE ANYMORE UNLESS WE INVITE YOU!!!"

And then I went back in my bedroom and slammed the door firmly and loudly.

Dramatic? Perhaps. Unnecessary? Maybe. Bad example? Probably.

Do I regret it? No.

Who says that kids are the only ones who get to have tantrums around here?

In my defense, I was OVER it.

But can a gal and guy just have some space to themselves? Is that too much to ask? I mean really now. I don't ask for much around this house. I can handle crumbs on the carpet. Spilled, sticky orange juice on the kitchen floor. Toys all over the playroom. Toys covering the basement. Unmade beds and Legos on the bedroom floors. Clothes that somehow miss the laundry basket and end up on the floor. Video game controllers underneath the couch. I can handle these things. We deal with it and move on.

But all I really ask for around this house is the following:
1.) Be polite. Say please and thank you and treat others with respect.
2.) Destruction of this house is not allowed.
3.) Put your pee and poop in the toilet.
4.) Daddy and Mommy need a room of their own. Buzz off.

Some days I feel like this is just the kids' house and we are living in it. But that has to change.

I have thrown down this gauntlet many times before, but immediately afterward I regret it, because there is nothing I love more than family snuggle time in our bed, watching TV, reading books or just talking to the kids. I treasure those moments. But family snuggle time soon turns into a license for these kids to turn our bedroom into yet another playroom, despite the fact that they have plenty of other rooms in this house to claim as their space. The Matchbox cars start to show up on the floor. I find stuffed animals under my covers. Mind-numbing kids' DVDs show up in my DVD player.

And then I lose it again. I just. can't. deal. It becomes one more playroom for me to clean up, and believe you me, there are ENOUGH things to clean up around here.

I have considered throwing my books and clothes and hairbrushes and ponytail holders and water bottles on their bedroom floors just to prove a point. However, I am sure these things would all go unnoticed with a shrug of their cute little shoulders and a, "Meh? What's this stuff? Cool. Mom is a slob too."

Our bedroom is my sanctuary. My haven. My only space in this house that is truly my own. (And Bill's, of course.) Our room is decorated so that it feels like a relaxing space for two adults. Not four shorties.

I have said it before. I adore these kids, and would step in front of a bus/truck/train to save them. If one of my babies fell into a pool of hungry piranhas, I would dive right in without hesitation. I am terrified of heights, but for them, I would scale the highest mountain. If one of them needed an organ? A pint of my blood? Done.

But I will NOT share a bedroom with my four children. I will not drink their backwash out of my water bottle. I will not trip over Jar-Jar Binks. Light sabers have no place among my shoes. I have my limits.

In the prolific words of Meatloaf, "I would do anything for love, but I won't do THAT."

I treasure what little sanity I have left.

Family snuggle-time in our big bed is still a yes. Total Master Bedroom takeover and sharing is a no-no.

Is that too much to ask?

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