You know, there is this commonly-held-by-the-public belief that homeschoolers are just so gosh darn polite and well behaved. And perhaps there are some gems out there, the ones who say "yes mam" and "no sir" and "can I help you carry the groceries in" all the time.
Yeah. Um...I don't have those kids.
I, instead, have these kids:
After my lovely offspring hinted around for at least a thousand days that the I-Dog at Burger King would be the coolest thing ever since god only knows what, I decide to swing into Big Bad BK and buy them a damn kids meal. We decide to eat in. Cheeseburger for one, chicken nugget crown things for the other. We find our seats. They open their bag, unpack their food, squeal in delight over the stupid I-Dog things, and delve into giddiness over the lame cardboard "costumes" that they can dress them up with. "Ooh, mom! Look! They light up, too!" Amazing, really. Now eat.
Grandma and I are trying to carry on some sort of conversation when suddenly, the I-Dogs can't seem to stay in the boys' hands. They are flipping across the table, falling on the floor. I remind the boys they should probably keep their I-Dogs under control. After all, you never know what's going to happen.
Well, "what's going to happen" turned out to be Iggy dropped his on the floor again and the lame cardboard costume fell off. And he couldn't find it. I'm not sure how hard it is to find a cardboard bat wing on the BK floor, but it literally disappeared. And that's when complete chaos broke out.
Side note: the boys are quite protective of each other. Like almost weirdly so. So when I said something to the effect of "Oh well, I guess we have to leave the missing bat wing here...let's go", not only was Iggy upset with me, but Ooky totally freaked out. Like I had just committed the most terrible crime against his brother and Ooky had been called out to be the avenger.
There were ear piercing screams and total close-to-a-seizure flailings going on. What is this? Do I have a two year old?? The first time, I grabbed Ooky's arm and quietly-but-firmly told him to knock it off. The second time it happened (which was about three milliseconds later) I said "That's it, we're going."
Side note: Yep, I'm one of those "take the kids out kicking and screaming" kind of parents. I refuse to sit and say "Honey...Mommmy said no....honey, what did mommy tell you, honey...if you do that again, I'm going to have to..."
Back to the story. So we're going. Seriously, the kids (especially my youngest, Ooky) completely became possessed by some screaming demonic freak-monster and made the biggest scene I have ever seen outside of a movie while leaving the Big Bad BK. I carried Ooky out kicking and screaming. I mean, really. Kicking. And screaming. Did I mention kicking? (I mean, WHO DOES THIS??) I managed to open the door while holding him by the waist under one arm. We got to the parking lot. I set him down. It escalated. I picked him back up and walked to the van (across a huge parking lot with people watching). We got to the van. There was a lot of kicking and screaming. His shoes ended up being thrown (by his mother) in the back seat of the van. He told me in no uncertain terms that he hated me. I refrained from comment and did his seat belt, then steamed while starting the van. My mom followed with the upset, but not nearly as loud or violent, older child.
Afterthoughts on the situation?
1. In this day in age, what can you seriously do when your kid is hitting and kicking you and you're in public?? Mind you, I didn't ask about after you get in the car or when you are at home...I'm asking about when you're in a restaurant or a parking lot people are staring at you. Because you know if you do anything more than look at your kid crooked, someone's going to have an issue...sometimes I think parents are "stuck" in situations like this.
2. Or maybe I should ask, what do you do when the kid just doesn't get it? Doesn't respond? Stop going into public?
3. I really wish that choosing to homeschool automatically made your kids sprout a halo. But apparently I missed the "how-to" email about that. Anyone want to forward that one on to me??
Your comments would be greatly appreciated. I'm still a little fired up about the day.