just a mom figuring it out one day at a time

Parenting Moment That Made Me Want to Scream

This week has been rough.  I’ve been sick. KC’s been sick, and on a cocktail of medications which turn her into an evil version of her best self, and CJ has been hit with a huge volume of homework.  I put this all out there because, well, you need to know my state of mind when I walked into my dining room last night.

Backtrack to last night…

KC was on the couch and I came in to check on her. While adjusting her blankets, I heard the oddest sound coming from the dining room where my son CJ was working on his homework.

“CJ, what’s that noise? Everything okay in there?”

“Yup, just taking a little break and messing around.”

The sound persisted and the mommy radar turned on.

Standing up, I walked into the dining room and found a pile of shredded paper. CJ looked up at me with big round eyes, his mouth was open as if he wanted to say something but couldn’t. It took a moment for me to register that what I was seeing was his school project, which he had worked on for nearly two days. In a pile. Shredded to pieces.

Barely able to contain myself, in a voice–ok full admission, it was in a voice louder than I should have– I said, “WHAT. DID. YOU. DO?”

At this point CJ stood up, dropping the last shred of paper and put his hands in his pockets.

“I tore it up. All of it. It looked awful and I couldn’t turn it in that way.”

Stunned, I couldn’t grasp the logic of my tween. He had basically destroyed hours worth of work. Although I recognize that he is a perfectionist, the fact that he did this astounded me. It just didn’t make sense. It was was almost six o’clock the night before it was due.  Then another realization hit.

“Wait a minute. Was this the noise?  Was this what you were doing when you told me you were just messing around?”

I was met with a blank stare.

“You lied to me?”

In my world we don’t lie. I don’t know what it is, but lying is one of the worse things you can do.  People screw up. It happens, but be honest about it and make a positive change.  To add dishonesty to any infraction only makes it worse in my world. My kids know this.  You do something bad, it may or may not require a punishment, but if you lie about it, that alone deserves a consequence.

“Well, it looks like you’ll be having a late night tonight because you’re going to have to redo it all CJ.”


We stood there in a standoff for a minute. Thoughts of yesterday’s post came to mind. Yup, he was going to have to deal with the consequence of letting his temper get the best of him. Either he would be up all night redoing the whole project, or he’d turn in something that was substandard. Either way, it wasn’t pretty.

Before I turned to walk away I added, “And we still will have to discuss the consequence for lying to me.”

“I know.” CJ said as he turned and walked away.






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