Exactly what kind of crazy has taken up residence in Bear’s body?

It’s like invasion of the body snatchers around here.  One moment we’ll be rolling along, having a perfectly good day; the next her head’s spinning around and she’s vomiting pea soup.  (Not that I’ve actually watched The Exorcist, seeing as I enjoy sleeping and have a strong suspicion that movie would put a stop to that.)

Bear jumped eagerly out of bed this morning – she’d bought Turner a surprise birthday present and has been chomping at the bit all week to give it to him.  She blew a gasket when I wouldn’t give in last night and let her give it to him early while BrightSide was away, so it was almost like Christmas morning today.

Fast forward five hours and we’ve got DRAAAAA-MAAAAA.

They’d played all morning, happy as clams, until they hit the wall.  She tried to take a turn at something, T-man stepped in, she snapped, he snapped, and she pulled out the big guns.  BOOM.

Let us commence the come-to-Jesus meeting.

So Bear and I had a lengthy heart to heart about how she’s been speaking to her brother lately.  Both BrightSide and I had sent a warning shot over her bow in the last few days so she’d exhausted her supply of free passes; I’d have to come up with a consequence.  Ugh.

O-kay.  Goodbye iPad for the rest of the day, enter reflection time to consider exactly what had happened and why, then write letters to me and her brother about it.  Bear didn’t really bat an eye at the technology but started wailing at the writing component.  She raised such a fuss I’m sure the neighbors thought I was beating her senseless but such is life…

While Bear finished her letters I wrapped up the job I was doing, and it was at this point that I made a critical error in judgement: I announced I was going to take a shower.

I know, I know, what on earth was I thinking?  Everyone knows showers are a luxury while the kids are home, and to be guaranteed one I need to get up before they do.  Except they’re 9- and 11-years-old, for the love.

So I was in my bathroom for ten minutes tops – I hadn’t even managed to get in the stupid shower yet – when T-man knocked on the door with a problem.  I bought myself time for a quick shower and then got the lowdown: it seemed that it took all of 30 minutes for the lesson from my work that morning to wear off.  Bear had pulled a nutty again in the kitchen.

And thus began the second come-to-Jesus meeting of the day.  It wasn’t pretty.  And then I had to amp up the punishment.

Losing technology didn’t faze her.  Reflection and apologies obviously didn’t deter her from marching that attitude right back out again.  So I had to figure out what would matter.

People matter.

Bear is a social butterfly.  She needs people surrounding her like she needs air; we’ve actually talked about how she needs to work on enjoying time by herself, a self-improvement project she hasn’t exactly embraced.  But I digress.

I told Bear she’d be in her room until dinner so there would be some space between her and T-man.

Well, if it sounded like a beating over the letters, this consequence made her wail like her life was ending. And, not to sound insensitive, but that kind of noise really echoes in a bathroom so I wasn’t exactly nurturing when I told her to cut it out.

She was remarkably calm when she emerged at dinnertime.  Almost as if the entire middle portion of the day hadn’t occurred at all.

I’m not sure I’ll be able to hang on for this roller coaster ride.