The Bee woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning. (Though lately, as landisdad pointed out to me recently via text message, every side of the bed is the wrong side for her. I’m hoping it’ll pass when she turns 13. Naive, I know.)
She came into my room where I was lying in bed reading, and started yelling at me about something that really didn’t have anything to do with me. I yelled back for a while, and then I took away a certain electronic device that she had been holding and threatening to hit me with.
I honestly don’t know if she will ever stop being angry. She’s been angry since birth, and since her father and I separated, the anger has been spilling out all over the place.
I have to remind myself sometimes that it’s not about me–it’s about her. I mean, there is some part of it that is about me–I’m not trying to delegitimize her anger. But at the end of the day, her anger management issues are a deeply ingrained part of her, and they get better and worse.
The only way I got her off it, this morning, was by being goofy. Apparently, the phrase “monkeys eat frozen peas” and variations of same (frozen monkeys eat peas) is just too weird, when repeated over and over again by your mother, to stay mad.
That’s what the Bee said to me, sobbing, at her birthday dinner.
It seems that she had only told 2 friends about the fact that landisdad and I have separated. And there were 3 girls coming to her birthday party—a sleepover—the next night who didn’t know about it.
She was worried that people would make fun of her. She said, “I’m supposed to be this perfect girl, and now they’ll know that I’m not perfect!”
I told her, no one’s life is perfect. I told her that when I told people that landisdad and I were getting divorced, some were shocked, because it looked like we had the perfect life. I told her that she would see that her friends didn’t really care.
Mostly I held her while she sobbed.
12 is a hard age. I remember that.
As it turned out, I don’t think any of the girls noticed or cared when I left the party, around 9 pm. They did notice when I came back the next morning, because I was carrying a huge box of doughnuts—but I think it was the doughnuts that caught their eye, rather than me in street clothes, obviously showered.
After we ate breakfast and the girls went home, one by one, the Bee asked if she could come back to my apartment with me. She did her homework while I did some stuff on the computer for work. She hung out with a stray kitten the kids insisted I take in, that I haven’t found a home for yet. She looked at some of her presents.
We drove back to landisdad’s for dinner, and after we ate, I came back here. Around 10, she texted me that she couldn’t sleep, and that she wanted to talk to me–I offered to call her, but she said she didn’t want to talk on the phone. I told her to think about things that made her happy at the party, and that we’d see each other today.
I don’t know what’s going on inside her head. But I’m hoping she lets me in.