Thursday, March 5, 2009

Sink or Swim

I'm so mad right now that I can't stand it. My 11 year old did it, again. They say that the two's are terrible, but I'm having a much harder time with 11. I think that something ate my child's brain. She habitually 'forgets' things that are pretty important because she is so wrapped up in whatever else is more important at the moment. She almost never thinks ahead and I'm finding it quite annoying. It is most annoying because she used to be much different. This is completely new territory for us. She used to be the kid that I could ask her where anything was and she remembered exact locations - of everything, hers or someone else's. She was very observant of all around her, yet that seems to have been lost in the shuffle. She's starting to act like a ditzy teen (but she's only 11!!!!). If this is a preview of 13-17, then people, I'm screwed. Let's hope this is a phase.

The latest comes about 11pm last night. Apparently, her conscious got to her so much that it jolted her out of sleep...."HEY, TOMORROW IS THURSDAY, remember....". She stumbled into our room to inform us that she almost(?) forgot that tomorrow is the day for her to do a cooking demonstration for her speech class. Blink. 11 pm. Blink. The day before.

What makes me the most angry is that we talked about this demonstration 2 weeks ago. We brainstormed, we came up with ideas that would be easy and ones that would really wow the teacher. We decided on something that would have an interesting story behind it so she would have good 'chat' material while demonstrating the recipe. The schedule for demonstrations was not set, so we had no date. I also asked her to speak with her instructor to make sure that she would be permitted to do what we had planned. I asked her a few times over the course of the past two weeks if she had gotten permission, etc., the last inquiry from me was Friday. She had no new information. I'm guessing she probably got the go ahead and date on Monday of this week, but failed to let me know.

Since we only had half the ingredients necessary for this project I had to get up two hours early to go to the grocery store and get what she needed, then we had to practice and time the speech and make her note cards. All on the day of the demonstration.

The worst part is that I absolutely could not enjoy doing this project with her. It started out great with the ideas and decision making. I had anticipated having a lot of fun with this, but I could not get past my anger - at 5:30 a.m. no less. The entire morning just completely sucked ass and I pretty much just helped her do enough to 'get by'. She was concerned that it would not last as long as it was supposed to and instead of being a great mom I said, "well, I guess you're grade is just screwed then!".

I'm wondering if I would have been better off to just not help her at all, to just let her tell her teacher that she was unprepared and see where the chips would fall. I might have been a lot less angry at the whole situation and I might have been a better parental unit. The jury is out, I think I would still be mad that she let the grade go, but maybe I would have been a bit less vocal to her about it.

Sometimes it just sucks to be the grown up. Would you let them sink or help them swim? I probably did more harm by helping her throw something together, than to let her just fail and learn from her mistake. Considering that this was a large percentage of her grade, would you knowingly let your child fail a class to teach them a lesson? Where do you draw the line? Failing a class is different (to me) than screwing up outside of school.