Tag Archives: children

The Customer in Customer Service Part One

Oh shit, here she comes.


And look… the hellions are with her.


I’m sure you’re aware of her. It’s the woman who could care less about the fact that she parented a monstrous posse of mini demons. She walks into every building with her defensive bitch stare on as if she already knows the number of dirty looks that will beam down on her. She created the mess that follows her in but she stopped handing out fucks a long time ago. Probably right after the first one showed signs of trouble.


The middle child is usually the quietest one. He only has outbursts on occasion. I have a theory the he’s the leader of the group, secretly. His brothers are not aware of his control but it’s there. He stands off to the side while the other two spread their filth. The extent of his destruction is unknown at this point. It only shows every now and then when the other two are lacking in severity. He searches for the one working in the building that harbors the most authority (and this, unfortunately, falls on me most days) and rests his chilling glare on them. His hand slowly rises to meet with a novelty item of some degree of value and relocates it to the floor. Whether or not the item breaks is unimportant. He just wants you to know he’s there, lurking. He’s already asserting himself at the pathetic age of eight (I’m guessing). A slight chill fills the room at that thought.


The eldest son is only slightly composed. He has been getting everything he wants far longer than the other two so why should he have to assert anything other than his stature? He might even help the mother from time to time as a reminder that he was her first. Little does he know that this means absolutely nothing to her. He’s an ungrateful little shit all the same. His superpower is a false sense of entitlement followed by an uncomfortably laughable pouty face. It’s uncomfortable because of the way it works on occasion. This evokes a staggering degree of hatred towards the mother. You really have to fight the urges looming in your now balled fist at this point. They’re only children, you say to yourself. They did not cause bad parenting; they are the consequence of it.


And then you lay eyes on the smallest one…


Everything in the store belongs to him. Did you know that? It just depends on when he decides that he needs that particular item. The mother at least tries to control this one but it’s a lost cause at this point. You can’t put three Tasmanian devils in a museum and only provide rules for one of them. A baby could tell you how much that does not work but she tries anyway. He locates his item of the day and begins his parade of lunacy. Declaring it as his own, he clutches onto it and proudly displays it for everyone to see. The mother murmurs under her breath for him to put it back but not even her own ears could hear her. I can see it in her deadpan eyes; she’s desperately hoping he’ll get the hint. At this point, I’m beginning to tear my hair out. Once payment is given the woman then has to pry the item from the now screaming mass slumped on the floor as the oldest son is laughing hysterically. The middle son is leaving the area while depositing a pleased grin in my direction and I find myself defeated somehow. The oldest is having a hard time walking out due to his laughter as the mother is now dragging the youngest out of the store by the back of his shirt. He apparently has the incredible gift of stiffening his entire body while still violently flailing his limbs.


My eyes scan the aftermath. The devastation is massive. No… horrendous…


Hazard pay should be put in effect for times like these.


It’s a wondrous thing that the mother still has a heartbeat.


If you ever find yourself witnessing this, don’t be alarmed by the sudden onset of exhaustion. It happens to the best of us.


A smoke break is required afterwards.


Or maybe an alcohol break…


Fuck it. I’m clocking out.


The Cost Of Motherhood

With Mother’s Day around the corner, I feel the need to write about motherhood. Or, at least, the side that no one seems to want to discuss on a regular basis. This is the part every mother fears explaining for the shame that soon follows. The part that seems to haunt us.


There are the things that are domesticating in a mother’s life. I’m talking about the laundry, dishes, cooking, bedtime stories, teeth brushing, and many more that often get credited on Mother’s Day. Thanks for always taking care of me, mom. You wiped my ass when I needed it most. Sure, I will cook for my daughter. I will make sure she showers. I will even buy her that movie that she is dying to have. This is the forefront, the obvious, and the celebrated side. If you are a truly lucky mother, the children may even remember the times you kissed their boo boos and wiped their tears away. We are their superheroes and we will fight for them no matter what the cost to ourselves. This is the part that I am getting at though, the cost.


What no one ever seems to want to discuss is the completely terrifying moments that come from being a mother. Those moments when your child tears you down to nothing but the pile of shit they just threw on the floor. They scream at you, hate you, call you a liar, wrong, terrible… the worst mother in the entire world. The fits they throw with all the crying and nail-biting screams. There are moments when they do not listen to you. They completely ignore that you are even there. They make fun of you in front of their friends. They hit you, scratch you, and even bite you. Worst of all, they reject you…


There is a moment when all of this comes to a point. I like to call it the “lost space.” That moment when your child is lying face down on the floor, screaming and crying, and will not let you near them. The only thing that you can do is to just sit and watch them. There is not a single thing that will stop this from happening. Everything else in the world stops. Call the school. Forget your job. Turn off your phone. This is a personal day. An important family matter has come up. At this point in time you are lost. You cannot control your child. You are left in a standstill without a single solution to what is happening. This is not simply a moment of sanity loss but an intolerably heavy moment of severe depression and blinding rage rolled up in a nice blanket of paralyzing fear. You are no longer a mother but a soul from damnation that has brought forth the fires of Hell and then forgot the leash. Everything that has made you into who you are melts away and there is nothing left but an empty crumbling shell. You know that you should act like a mother but you forgot how.


Most children will not remember these moments but a mother will. Whether it was multiple times or just one big one, this is something that no one talks about. As mothers, it is our job to hide it but it’s there. It lives in a memory under our skin. It itches on occasion and calls out to us. It reminds us of the terrible possibility that we have failed. Maybe we will still fail. Maybe our child will grow up to become a terrorist or serial killer while the world looks to us and asks why. We do not have the answers. All we know is that the moment passed. We made it to the other side. It is finished and confused relief sets in.


Parenthood, in general, tears you down as a human being. I used to think that being a line cook was the most grueling and harshest job that there is but I was so incredibly wrong. Being a parent is a soul-crushing and murderous way to live. From the moment they are born, beyond the tedious domesticating responsibilities, you are filled with anxiety, frustration, exhaustion, and a looming sense of complete failure. This will never go away but those moments of “lost space” will. Eventually, when you reach the other side, you remember that this is your child. The real test of being a mother comes from the after effects of these moments when you can give your child a hug and tell them that it will be okay. What separates a mother from anyone else is her ability to look past those desires to watch the world burn down and still love her child without resentment. They come from our blood and whether we understand them or not, a world without our children is useless.


Mother’s Day is not about celebrating the endless piles of laundry that get done but remembering the sacrifices given without hesitation. When your mother looks at you with loving eyes and tells you that there was a time when she was unsure about your future, please, take her seriously. If it weren’t for her ability to see beyond moments of purely agonizing rage, you would not be here.


Remember that and go kiss your mother.

I Saw The Face Of Evil Today (and his nose was running)

Let’s face it, kids are cruel. Downright devilish dickheads determined to degrade society by demonizing the very essence of innocence. Or, something like that. True, calling them devilish little dickheads is a bit much but you cannot completely disagree with me. They have no boundaries, a learned trait which is apparently too difficult for some. We are supposed to instill that in our children so that they do not grow up to become adult dickheads. Sometimes, though, these morals do not stick. Whether through a faulty teacher or a faulty student, some kids are just terrorizing little demons. Given, a certain level of disobedience is expected. This is how we all learn the difference between right and wrong, correct? However, once this wall is breached, all the powers of hell come forth. It’s fucking mesmerizing if you watch it from afar but remember to keep your distance. Those little bastards have very sharp fangs.

Now, my daughter is no angel. She has her moments which makes it that much more horrible when you see it in another child. At that moment in time there is a split second when you realize the fact that your child is not the only one and she might not be the worst of them either. They travel in pacts. They plot to take over the world and, all of the sudden, your comfortable little ideals about the world come crashing down around you. Now, hold on a second… I’m getting a bit carried away. (Or am I?)

It starts with something small. Childish, you might even say, but it is how they react to it that really matters. Any other kid would put the rock down, walk away, or even apologize. A little demon person, however? Well, their eyes get very low from pointing their chin in the direction of their birthplace but even the slightest connection from their pupils will plant horrors under your skin. They get very still, their voices calm and quiet, and they curse you with a tilted smile. It’s terrifying if only because you cannot do a damn thing to them. That is where their power lies. What is true evil without being something you cannot vanquish? Pay no attention to the smudges of crayon stuck in their shirt. The eyes will tell you everything.

To make matters worse, we contradict what we tell our kids on how to handle an encounter with such evil. Don’t be a tattletale but tell an adult if someone is doing something wrong. Would you tell on a bully if that was drilled into your head as a child? No! You got beat up throughout your childhood, didn’t you?! What the hell do we expect our kids to do? We tell them that we do not tolerate bullying yet become annoyed when we have a snitch in our midst. Hypocrisy, how unbecoming of you. They should not be afraid to come to us and we should not fear isolating the problem. Corner them, point them out, and shame the hell out of them. Bully needs to become the four letter word, not tattletale.

We, as adults, cannot touch children. Even if that child is being a terrorizing little shit, anything beyond a hug is considered abuse. You know what I say? Grudges hold merit in them. That little boy that tried to throw a rock at my daughter this morning while giving me the evil eye needs to watch his back eleven years from now. An elderly army might do us some good when those dickheads become legal. Yeah, I said it. You know that you have thought about it once or twice. This is a new movement. It shall be dubbed the Elders Against Evil campaign.

You want to get rid of bullying? Start making it okay for the other kids to tell on them. There is a difference between a drama queen/king and a genuine complaint. Do not belittle the last bit of innocence left in this world.