Thursday, September 07, 2006

Sigh and Sigh again.

Today was supposed to be my rest day.

To be fair, I did putter for the time that both boys were in school. I picked up a package at UPS (walkie-talkies free from Airmiles! Yay!) And hung out at my house doing nothing. It was nice.

However, if I felt refreshed after my time to myself, the feeling is vanished now.

I just got back from taking Lucas to the orthodontist. It was supposed to be a quick half hour appointment to put in the appliance they made from yesterday’s mold.

The dental technician was able to put the appliance in and make sure it fit well, and do a thorough cleaning of his teeth.

But when she put the glue on it, Lucas dug his heels in. He absolutely refused to open his mouth.

We spent a half an hour answering all of his questions, over and over again. He was afraid it would hurt, he was afraid it would take too long, he was afraid he wouldn’t be able to talk. He wanted to know if there was any other way to do the expanding. He was afraid of the blue light they use to set the glue.

I think we addressed each question at least 10 times.

I offered him stickers on his reward chart, and a package of Pokemon stickers. I upped the ante to two packages. Lucas agreed, but wanted all of his questions answered again – the same questions. Then, he lay down but refused to open his mouth.

He bit the orthodontist twice.

I told him I was going to change from offering rewards to offering consequences. I counted to five, then offered the consequences. The orthodontist explained that the retainer cost $300, and that was what he would have to pay back if it was wasted. I told him the first thing we would sell would be his gameboy. This was really the first reaction I got out of him.

We ended up there a total of an hour and a half. We didn’t get the retainer in. We have to go back tomorrow.

Lucas is now in his room, banned from TV, radio, CD player, games.

I feel like the absolutely WORST mother in the world. I hate that I had to resort to threats and punishments. I hate that I kept four different employees late at the orthodontist and still didn’t accomplish what needed to be done.

I want Lucas to truly understand how disrespectful he was to everyone. Myself, the orthodontist, and everyone who tried to help him. I want him to know that the time spent over the last three days preparing for this appliance was worthwhile time, and that he wasted it by refusing to put the retainer in. I want him to never, ever do this again.

But at the same time, I worry that I’m being too harsh.

I am validating that he is scared, that he doesn’t want to do it, that it’s not fair. I am validating that he is scared. Then I firmly tell him that this is something we have to do, even though we don’t like it. I tell him that it will be over in two minutes, and I remind him that I have never lied to him – if I say it won’t hurt, it won’t. I always tell him when something will hurt.

But none of that worked. I ended u using threats and even that didn’t work.

I hate this job. This unpaid, thankless job.