|Do NOT let his looks deceive you...this 3 year old boy has been up to NO GOOD! NO JOKE, I've only grown gray hairs since he's been in my life.|
Last summer Ryan would say something about punching in the face. Jason and I would just look at each other and then say, "Oh, no, Ryan, we don't punch anyone in the face. Where did you hear about punching in the face?"
He didn't have an answer, and then, one day, I was nuggled up to him on the couch while he watched "Cars" and I heard it. It was one of those little tire helper guys, either Luigi or Guido, I can never remember who is who, and the real Ferrari's had just driven into the store for new tires, and one of the little Italians exclaimed, "A REAL Ferrari! Guido (or Luigi) punch me in the face!"
Frigging Pixar! I know you make movies for my entertainment as I watch along with my child, but my toddler doesn't understand that it's just an expression!
Fast forward to tonight as I was off to Walmart, all by myself, for a solo mom-retreat...just a chance to BREATHE and get out of the house, aka, operation: get tampons. My life should make you jealous, clearly. So, yeah, why not Target? Tar-jay? It's so much more hip mom...Well, because the $87.88 I spent at Walmart for tampons would have easily been $158.97 at Target, and even though the last few days of parenting a 3 year old boy merited a Target splurge with no regret, I'm still trying to stay on a budget, thank you, Dave Ramsey!
As I headed to get the said item, I took a turn through the razor aisle. Two guys, early 30's, hard-working, were talking, discussing, the one holding several different products in his hands and as I pass by with determination to avoid all eye contact with other people while on my solo retreat I hear, "Hey, have you ever had hemorrhoids? Is that okay if I ask you that question, ma'am?"
Me: Um, yes. I've had 3 babies, so of course I've had hemorrhoids.
Guy 1: Sorry, it's kinda personal, so thanks for letting me ask.
Me: You can ask me anything. Literally. I had a little boy who passed away so nothing phases me, and one thing I've learned is life is short and if your girl is suffering from hemorrhoids, you sure better take care of her.
Both guys in unison: Oh, I'm really sorry for your loss, ma'am. Nobody should ever go through that...
Me: Thank you. You guys are sweet. He is safe and healed with Jesus, but let's talk about your girl, she is the one who needs attention right now.
Guy 2: I have a real deep respect and relationship with my Lawd, Jesus Christ.
Guy 1: She's in a lot of pain and just told me to go to the store to get her some stuff, said it's burnin'. Should I get her the "Cooling Gel?"
Me: (holding his 3 items, side by side...) You need to get her the "Maximum Strength" relief, plus, get her these pads to put the cream onto and get her an ice pack. (*thinking, "Am I on a hidden camera? Is this for real? Are two guys asking me how to heal his woman's hemorrhoid...in Walmart?) Believe me, "Maximum Strength" is the way to go.
Guy 1: (*What he said at this point, I cannot repeat...)
Me: Oh. Well then, she may have an infection. You need to take care of her and get her to a doctor. She may need antibiotics. (*Dear Lord...just...Dear Lord...)
Guy 1: For reals? Okay, I have health insurance.
Me: Good, yes, give her this, but watch her, make sure she doesn't have a fever, and get her to a doctor to make sure she doesn't have an infection. You need to take good care of her, treat her right. God loves her and made her. He loves you, too, and He wants you to take good care of her.
Guy 1: Yeah, at least for this week, I'll do her right...
Me: NO! God made her and designed her and loves her and you, and He has a plan for your lives, so treat her right, EVERYDAY, ALL THE TIME!" (With more emphasis!)
Guys: Thank you, ma'am. (Outstretched hands.) I'm (so and so) and I'm (so and so). Here's my card if you ever need some trees cut down...
Me: Thanks. Nice to meet you. I'm Adrienne, like Rocky Balboa's wife. What's your girl's name?
Guy 1: (Such and such...)
Me: I'll be praying for her, for God to heal her body. Please, take care of her...
Guys: Yes, ma'am. Thanks for not being embarrassed to talk about hemorrhoids.
I turned the corner and had to post it on Facebook, because, clearly my solo retreat was over, right? I headed to the tampon aisle, then bought mascara and chocolate and a few other things since you can't just put tampons on the conveyor belt without anything else...duh. (I guess there IS self-check out...)
SOOOO, I was at Walmart ALONE because Ryan, my 3 year old, is giving me a run for my money, like doing naughty things because he is bored or just seeking attention or who knows why?! In the day to day, we are an awesome team, so this recent outbreak has thrown me for a loop. For the most part, I am an extremely patient person. I don't start fights knowingly, try to apply both Jesus AND Dale Carnegie strategies to day to day life whenever I can, and am quick to forgive and forget and find peace. But, yesterday as I was carrying Ryan upstairs for his nap, Ryan slapped me first, then punched me in the face 5 times, to which I calmly knelt down, turned him over my knee so he was face down, arms no longer able to get to my face, stood up, repositioned him with his arms and body tucked securely in my armpit, hugged him, put him into his bed for nap time, calmly told him I loved him, forgave him, that hitting his mommy or ANYONE on the face was completely disrespectful, never okay, and he was never to do it again, but that I loved him and forgave him, once again, and I'd see him later.
I was so sad, no story/snuggle time which is my favorite part of the day...
Then I went into my closet to put on my workout clothes and as I bent over to unzip my boots, I bawled HARD, sobs deep within, because my son punched me in the face. My son. With force. On purpose. And he has words...and he uses words...but this time chose to punch me in the face, with 5 forceful blows, only stopping because I am currently bigger than him. And it hurt my heart...and my face.
I knelt down and prayed. Breathed deep. Thanked God for my boy. Prayed some more and changed my clothes.
Before I headed downstairs I opened his door to find him standing at the end of his crib, crying with deep sadness, lips down turned. I said, "Ryan, I love you and I forgive you for hitting me. I was sad because you punched me in the face, so how you are sitting in your room crying, Mommy was just in her room, crying, too. When you hit me, it really hurt my feelings." He sobbed deeply and said, "Mommy, I love you so much! I'm so sorry I punched you! I won't ever punch you again! I'm so sorry, Mommy! I love you, and I forgive you, too!"
I'm not sure what he was forgiving me for, "What? For putting you down for a nap you clearly need, buddy?!" But I'll take it. I need forgiveness for all the screwing up I've already done to him and his sister...
I scooped him up and said, "Thank you, Ryan. I forgive you and love you so much! You are my very sweet boy! My Giraffe! Would you like to snuggle and read a book?" He hugged me hard and said he did.
As I closed the last page he put his hands together flat, prayer style, and laid them on my chest, then rested his head on them, curling into me, like we fit together, mother and son.
Today he didn't punch me or hit me or anything of the sort. Instead he purposefully peed and pooped in his bed, in his clothes, during "nap time" while he didn't sleep, along with pulling a canvas off the wall and chucking every stuffed animal out of his bed. If he has to go potty while he's in bed, he always just yells, "Mommy, I have to go potty!" No big deal. I head up and assist. But he's been potty trained for 8 months. Honestly, I think he's bored with just the two of us, staring at one another day in and day out, even though at the end of any day, no matter what, he chooses me to tuck him in. And I'll take it as long as I can get it.
I'll take the snuggles and the poop and pee, but not the punches. That's not what "turning the other cheek" means.
I'll love my boy fiercely, knees bent, eyes lifted, hands open to receive Divine strength and discernment...because this mama gets to go on retreats sometimes, and it's those little things like even cruising the quiet aisles of Walmart at night, that re-fill my heart, or at least get my head on straight...
...except when other people are in the same aisle...and want my expertise on hemorrhoids. Seriously?! "Guido, just punch me in the face!"
*IF you are ever in need of hemorrhoid expertise and a woman has tampons in her cart, let her pass on by, then ask the guy near the end of the aisle, by the razors, the one who looks constipated, what HE MAY USE, and let that woman continue on her solo-retreat...