Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire

Ya know, I’ve had to put up with a LOT of shit as a mom — catching puke with my bare hands, getting my dress flipped up in the middle of a crowded bank, and even having to scrub a red crayon-decorated window frame just in time for Mother’s Day.  Sure, my top might very well be about to blow, but nevertheless, I take it since that’s what parents do.  However, the one thing that absolutely burns my butt more than anything else is when my kids try to lie to me.

Now granted, I realize that sometimes, kids are just guilty by association, so I try my best to give them the benefit of the doubt.  Hell, I had my own fair share of misplaced finger pointing as a youngin’.  I remember one time that I totally took the heat for something that I didn’t even do.  My best friend was over at my house on our freshly stained deck in the backyard, when she spilled an entire bottle of tanning oil smack dab in the middle of the damn thing.  I knew that my dad was gonna flip his freaking lid, since he had put blood, sweat and tears into refinishing that deck.  And would you believe that my parents didn’t even give me a chance to explain MY side of the story?!  I was immediately blamed for effing up the wood and sentenced to one week of grounding.  I watched from the confines of my bedroom window as my friend happily played with the rest of the neighborhood in her false sense of freedom.  It was totally and completely unfair that she lied, and I was the one who had to pay the price.

There are times, however, when kids flat out lie straight to their parents’ faces.  And THIS is what makes me want to drop-kick a Webkinz or two.  Take, for instance, yesterday when my nose was immediately blasted with the overwhelming smell of fingernail polish when I stepped into my daughter’s room.  I must have asked her ten different times if she had painted her nails or anything else in the room, to which she innocently replied, “NO“, with a cute little bat of her big puppy dog eyes.  Every fiber of my being told me that the little shit was lying right through her toothless grin.  Plus, I have a wicked sense of smell so I knew that my nose, at least, was NOT deceiving me.

And wouldn’t ya know that after just a few minutes alone with Daddy, the little Pinocchio confessed her dishonesty and presented a freshly painted sock, complete with “pink” streaks and blobs??!!  WTF?!  Why the hell wouldn’t she tell ME, the woman who brought her into this world?!  I know I may be pissy at times, but I’m certainly no Wicked Witch of the Midwest.  She made him promise not to tell me the details of the story, so I’m not really sure where she was hiding the thing in her room.  I was so incredibly irked that she refused to tell me the truth.

Now I realize that this is probably just one of many lies that my daughter will tell me in her lifetime, but I really want my kids to feel like they can come to me with anything, whether it be something small like fingernail polish or something big like not getting in the car with a friend who’s been drinking.  Keeping the lines of communication open is such a vital part of parenting and something for which I will continue to strive.  And if all else fails, well then I’ll just send Daddy in to get the low-down….

Kid Fibs

     Recently my son’s been talking about some kid that he plays with on the playground at school named “Pepe”.  I’d never heard this name EVER mentioned before, so I thought I’d pull out the school directory, and see just who this little “Pepe” boy was.  Turns out, though, that there isn’t a single freaking soul in the entire first grade with the name of Pepe.  Upon further investigation, I found out that my son took it upon himself to change the name of his friend (who, by the way, has absolutely no Spanish ties WHATSOEVER) to Pepe.  Seriously?  WTF, dude?  Unfortunately, it seems that this is just something that kids do — they make shit up.  

     Take, for instance, the imaginary friend.  Many of us had one when we were growing up, right?  (Come on, don’t make me feel like I’M the freak show here, people!)  Maybe it was a product of me being an only child and wanting a sibling, but yes, I, too, had an imaginary friend as a kid.  Her name was Sally, and she lived in the coat closet in the foyer.  Everyone in my family was required to engage with Sally, and she went everywhere that we would go. If we went out to eat, Sally would dine with us. If we went to the grocery store, Sally would ride in the cart with me.  People often looked at my mom like she was a damn nutcase when she’d fuss at Sally (aka:  the air) for trying to steal things off the shelves.  And God love my mom for playing along with the whole gig, too.

     Things all came to a head though one day when my mom came to pick “Sally” and me up at the babysitter’s house.  The babysitter frantically raced to the door with a look of anguished frustration on her face.  She nervously admitted to my mom that she’d been searching high and low for my lost doll — under beds, in closets, inside drawers, all to no avail.  As she proceeded to explain how absolutely terrible she felt about the situation, I stood there in the wings with a shit-eating half-grin on my little punk-ass face.  My mom put two and two together and asked if the doll’s name happened to be Sally, to which the babysitter said yes. Trying desperately hard not to bust out laughing, my mom told this very frazzled, very unsuspecting woman that she could search all day and all night and never ever find her because SALLY WAS INVISIBLE!!!  You can probably imagine just how relieved (and probably just how pissed) the babysitter felt after learning the real deal. 

     But, you see, pretending is just a part of being a kid.  And as a parent, I’ve learned that it’s best just to question every damn thing my kids tell me.  Who knows when they’re telling the truth and when they’re telling a fib.  Unfortunately, their noses just aren’t equipped like Pinocchio’s.  Therefore, I’m actually thinking about having a lie detector station installed in my house as a precaution for the teenage years.  It never hurts to be one step ahead of the game, ya know.  

      

Smack Talk

smack_talk_bird     

     One of the big topics of conversation in our house this weekend was about good sportsmanship.  I never thought I would be discussing this with my kids about KINDERGARTEN soccer, but I guess I was sadly mistaken. Just when you think you really know your kids, they go and do a 180 on you….

     Apparently, my daughter was smack talking on the field with some of her teammates at her soccer game on Saturday morning.  They were giving their goalie a really hard time for not blocking a goal. Luckily, their coach overheard them and completely busted them. She gave a big talk at half-time about supporting each other and being a team player.  I was listening on the sidelines, trying to figure out what mean little brats she was referring to.  I asked my daughter if she was one of the smack talkers, and she looked me right in the eye and told me no.  Of course, I believed her because I never could’ve dreamed that my sweet little baby girl would purposely hurt someone else’s feelings.  I mean, we’ve talked many many times about how it doesn’t matter if they win or lose — I’ve got her trained like a seal to say that what matters most is having fun, or at least I thought I did.

     When we got home from the game, I was telling her how proud I was of her for trying her best (she did actually score the WINNING goal!) and how disappointing it was for her teammates to be such bad sports to their goalie. For some reason, I started to have a weird suspicion that she was somehow involved in the trash talking.  I asked her about her involvement again and instantly knew she had lied to me when her eyes became fixated on the ground.  She finally admitted it — the little stinker was most certainly right there in the middle of the meanness.  I could not believe it! All those times she’s robotically told me that it’s ok if her team didn’t win — but, apparently, it’s definitely not ok with her!

     We had a long talk about how much it would hurt her feelings if her teammates were giving her a hard time about making an honest mistake, and that team work is about cheering each other on at all times.  She seemed to be listening (although with six year olds, you never really know). I really hope she understands this very important lesson.  I’m definitely not trying to raise some little punk.  We shall see — their next game isn’t until next Saturday, and I pray that I don’t have a little Tonya Harding on my hands…..