I am very rarely wrong. At least in my opinion. Admitting that I'm wrong is hard enough, adding an apology on top of it can get downright humiliating.
Especially when I'm really wrong. Especially when the apology owed is to one of my kids.
Yesterday, I took Katie to rehearsal and told her the schedule didn't indicate she needed to be in costume. She took her costume bag anyway. Five minutes after dropping her off, she called and said the director wouldn't let her on stage without her costume.
"That's not what the schedule said. You have your costume bag with you, right?"
She didn't answer me. I repeated the question. I yelled her name. She's on the other end of the phone and it's clear she's listening to someone else talking. "Ummmm," she's saying. "I only brought my props in the bag."
I went all screamy. I was irritated she wasn't paying attention to me, I was pissed I had to drive home and get the costume and take it back, I was mad the director wouldn't let her on stage, I was mad the calendar didn't say costumes and how in the hell did everyone else but me know she was supposed to be in costume?
It was ridiculous and I was a real jerk, and even after I hung up the phone I continued to get madder and madder, so by the time I got back to the theater, I was seething. So angry that I decided to punish her with something truly horrible - the picking up of the dog poop. This is ordinarily a horrible chore, but Roxy has really been doing some serious work out there, and it's been a couple of weeks since Sean picked it up. And it rained this week. She was really in for it. I told her as much:
"And when you get home you are picking up poop! I hope you're ready, because it's a Roxy shit storm and you're in the middle of it!"
First of all, I do not curse at, or in front of, my children. Surprising, as I'm pretty free with the f-bombs when writing. Second (ly? second of all?), I don't even know what that means. Roxy shit storm and you're in the middle of it? Even Katie kind of looked at me like 'yeah, that didn't make any sense!'.
In the 15 minute drive between the theater and home, spurred by the ridiculousness of my statement, I started thinking about why I was mad, and at whom I was really mad. Katie just did what I told her to do. I was the one who was wrong.
When I went back to pick her up after practice, I apologized. Profusely and humbly and sincerely. But before that, I picked up the poop. It was a fitting punishment.
2 weeks ago