Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The Voice of Reason

My last nerve has been trodden....nay, danced upon. With cleats. GOLF cleats. Sharp ones.

I am a reasonable woman. Logic is not only my byword, it is practically my religion. I don't always practice it, but one does try to remain faithful. That being said, I want to make it perfectly clear that I do not expect children to behave like little adults. Having raised two of what the DH and I referred to as VCC (Varmint Critter Children), and being the eldest of four whom I often had to watch, I am well aware that any child, given the opportunity, will show you up. The amount that they will misbehave is directly proportional to the number of other adults to whom these children are unknown that there are in the room, and the importance of whatever you're in the middle of doing.

This I know. This any reasonable person knows. Hence and therefore...ergo, even!...any parent should be prepared for this, and know how to regain control. Even be willing to remove said bra...children to affect a resolution with them. Also a reasonable expectation. Today's parent was not.

We are often called on to do covers for a local child-centered magazine. The sitting is won in a drawing said magazine holds, and is for younger children. All well and good; the DH is a model of patience, and in my selfless giving manner, I help. I hide in the office. With the door firmly SHUT. It's the least I can do, and you can always count on me to do the least. Today two children were brought in for one of these sittings with mommy in tow - no one can say she was bringing them - and they arrived a full half-hour early.

Folks, a photography studio is not a doctor's office. Arriving well before your appointment is just rude. You may well be interrupting a consultation with a bride, someone's viewing session, or another sitting. Or your photographer may desperately need to pee, and thought he had plenty of time. But that's just a general possibility, of course. Not saying that was the case at all, nuh-uh, nosirreebob.

In walks Ms. Clueless with older daughter aged 4, and a 2 year old son; much too old to still be using a pacifier, but who asked me. As I discreetly shoot my arm from the cuff of my sweater and peer at my watch, she burbles, "I wasn't sure how long it would take to get here." Maps being so rare, of course. Apparently she never thought of looking into one of the other shops in the building to eat up some time; no, we had to adjust to her.

I walk on in to show them into the dressing room. As she starts dumping her armload of stuff, Ms. C. realizes Junior hasn't followed. He is not in the camera room we just walked through. No, he's in the reception area, his arm shoulder deep in a trash can. Greaaa-aaate. This is such an auspicious beginning in the not-so-much kinda sense.

This being a summer camp issue of the magazine, they are doing soccer shots first. Daughter Dearest has a cow about having to wear her soccer shoes; she wants to be barefoot because, after all, don't YOU always kick a very hard ball around with no shoes on as you run over a grassy field containing God knows what? At this point I turn the whole mess over to DH, dart to the office, and hunker down, resisting the urge to hide under my desk.

Much shrieking ensues. I'm not sure who is yelling more, kids or Mom, but I am sooo glad not to be in there. I can feel my shoulders climbing up to ear level. DH pokes his head in during one costume change, and he's looking shell-shocked. "She has absolutely NO control over these kids," he whispered, aghast. This is a secret?!? I ask in my firmest manner if he'd like me to come in and take control. Looking, if possible, even more fearful, he mutely shook his head no and backed out, shutting the door behind him.

Probably a good call.

1 comment:

fairydust said...

Thank you for making me smile on this monday morning. I also have grown up children and I worked with other peoples children for many years. Yep I can remember all those mums who are contoled by the children "nice bit of role reversal". I even had parents asking me how I did it (controled their off spring)
Once again thanks for brightening my day.
best wishes