Consider yourself warned!
A guide for those who think they want children.
When I came home from choir rehearsal earlier this week, the first thing I noticed when I walked in the door was that it was really hot inside the house. At first, I was glad. After all, it was after 10:00 pm and it was cold outside. But, then I started wondering, “Why is it so damn hot in here?” You see, I have my heat on a timer. At that time of night, it should have only been about 70 degrees. So, I was really confused as to why it felt like a sauna when I walked in the door. Imagine my shock when I checked the thermostat and found that someone had the audacity to set the temperature to 80 degrees! 80 degrees! In the middle of April!
Now, I won’t lie. It was cold outside, but it wasn’t cold enough to justify setting the temperature to 80 degrees. Of course, you know I had to find out who changed it:
Me: “Who turned the heat up to 80 degrees?”
Daughter: “Not me.”
Son: “Me. It was cold in here.”
Me: “Turn on the space heater in your room then.”
Son: “No. It was cold downstairs.”
Here’s where I get annoyed (to put it mildly), I was on the first floor. My son was yelling to me from his attic bedroom. Attic. Bedroom. He wasn’t even downstairs anymore, and it didn’t appear as if he was coming back down any time soon. I calmly explained to him that heat is not free and this is costing me money. My quick thinking, (or smart ass, whichever you prefer) son asked, “If the temperature was already at 74, how much more would 6 more degrees cost?” You know I wanted to hurt him, right? For all you parents of teenagers out there, you would have been so proud of me. I kept it together and didn’t revert to banshee mode. Believe you me, I was sooooo ready to go there.
It’s the same issue with water. I just don’t get it. Why is the shower running when no one is in there? I can understand that you may want to run the water so it can heat up before you get in. After all, not too many of us like a cold shower. But, come on. After 15 minutes, the water is probably hot.
Not only do I have to pay for the water they use in the shower, but I also have to pay for the water they use to wash the clothes. Do you think they think of that? Of course not. I can tell by how they do the laundry. When we first moved into our house. I taught them how to work the washer and dryer. I specifically remember explaining to them that if you have a lot of clothes, set the water on high. If you have only a little bit of clothes, use the low setting, or better yet, wait until there is a large pile of clothes and wash them all at one time. Then use the large setting. Do you think they listened? No. One day my son had the nerve to wash three shirts … on the high setting! Do you understand how much water was wasted? Apparently, he didn’t care about my pocketbook or the environment.
And here’s another one, why do kids feel the need to stand in front of the refrigerator with the door open for 10 minutes? Really? Like new food is going to just magically appear? After a quick scan, you know what’s in there. So, open the door and take a look inside. If you really can’t decide what to eat in 30 seconds, close the door, decide what you want, open the door, and then get the food. See how easy that was?
Now, I'm venting about all this to not only get it all off my chest, but to also warn you future parents and parent wannabes. Get ready. When you have kids, your household bills are going to substantially increase. You may as well start saving your money now.
So, now you know, and you can …
Consider Yourself Warned!
This past Thursday was Holy Thursday. My daughter goes to a Catholic high school so she had the day off. So, instead of being home, praying or doing whatever she’s suppose to be doing to remember that holy day, my daughter, along with the members of her school’s track team, were at a track meet. Now, I just happened to have Thursday off. I had planned on cleaning my house and doing the laundry. I know, not quite a religious way to celebrate the holiday. But hey, some things just need to be done. Don’t judge. Anyway, I didn’t even get to do that. My daughter had to be at the track field by 9:30 am. Unfortunately, the meet was not in Brooklyn which meant that I had to drive and that we needed to leave home around 8:00 am because you just never know what will be going on with traffic. So needless to say, I didn’t get to clean the house. Instead, I went to my daughter’s track meet.
This was the first time that I got to see my daughter run track. I watched her run cross country earlier this year, and she’s even gone out and ran with me and my girlfriends a few times. Or, should I say, she started with us. Usually, she ends up waiting for us at the finish line. This day, she ran both the 400 and 800 meter races. She didn’t win, but she didn’t come in last. I was so proud of her. Although, I would have been proud of her even if she came in last. She went out there and gave it her all. I mean, that girl ran her butt off! I had no clue how fast she could run. Like I said, I’ve watched her run cross country last season. But that’s different. Cross country is more about distance and stamina. Track was all about how fast you could run. I have to say, I was really impressed with her running skills. I was one proud mama.
Now, this was my first track meet, so let me tell you what I learned. First of all, these meets last all day. All. Damn. Day. I’m not joking. All day. The up side is that it is fun watching the kids compete. You cheer for your child, you cheer for your child’s teammates, you cheer when its time to go home. As a parent, you need to master the art of patience and stamina because you are not going home anytime soon.
Also, if your child runs in March/April, and you live in the northeast, its going to be cold. I wish someone had told me that before I sat down on the hard, cold bench. This track meet was at Randall’s Island. Island. Let that sink in. We were surrounded by water. In March. It was cold when we arrived at 9:00 am, and it was cold when we left around 3:00 pm. All I had on was a short down jacket. Silly me. I thought that would be enough to keep me warm. The only time I was warm was when we were in the heated car. I was cold all day. All. Day. I looked at the moms in the row behind me. They were all bundled up in hats, scarves, gloves, and blankets. Blankets. This was not their first time at a track meet. I learned my lesson. On Friday, I bought two mini blankets. One for me, and one for my daughter. I will be prepared for the next meet.
The other thing I learned from the experienced moms ... and from going to the snack bar was to bring your own snacks. Why, you ask? Because the snack bar is expensive. Unless you bring in a bucket of chicken, you are forced to buy the expensive cheeseburgers, chicken fingers, drinks, chips, etc. Unfortunately, your kid will ask you to buy him/her something to eat. And since you’ve been there for five hours, and your child still has at least two more hours to go before their next event, you kind of feel bad for them. Besides, you’re hungry too. So off you go to drop a fortune at the snack bar. So, next time, I’m bringing my own snacks. Who knows? Maybe I can hide some sandwiches in my pocketbook. After all, its not like they really checked it.
The last thing I learned is this ... make your coffee at home and bring it with you in a metal thermos. I was charged $3.00 for a cup of coffee! Can you believe it? We were there for at six hours. I needed two cups of coffee to make it through the day. The coffee wasn’t too bad, but I would have preferred to throw in another $2.00 for a cup of coffee from Starbucks! But I didn’t have that option, it was cold, and I was trying to stay warm.
Anyway, after all that, I had a great time. It was fun watching the kids race and it was fun cheering them on. They even inspired me to run more consistently. Maybe I’ll start next week. But I know this, next time I go to my daughter’s track meet, I will make sure to bring a blanket, snacks, and coffee in a thermos.
Now you know too.
So .... Consider Yourself Warned!
SassyGirlTye lives with her two wonderful teenagers in Brooklyn, New York. No matter what she says in her posts, she truly loves her children with all her heart.