It was not a pretty scene in the Pipe Life household this afternoon.
It wasn't too bad until I parked the truck at home after picking the kids up from the bus stop and Rachel realized something was missing from her cache.
A video game. A small cartridge she had stuffed in an extra little bag she was carrying. When she gathered all her stuff before getting out of the truck, she realized the game was gone.
Tears. Immediately. Lots of them. And there was no convincing her that it wasn't gone forever!
I tried to sit her down and come up with some constructive ways to work through this. I suggested she go outside and look in the truck. Maybe I would take her back to where they get off the bus and we could look around on the ground. Or perhaps the bus driver would find the game on the floor of the bus and would give it to her on Monday.
None of these suggestions was acceptable, and she continued to cry inconsolably and yell at me to quit yelling at her (uhhhh, I wasn't yelling). I began to wonder if whatever possessed my alarm clock the other day was still hanging around in the house and had taken up residence in my daughter. Suddenly everything became an assault on her. Everything her brother or I said she assumed was directed at her in a derogatory way. As I watched Cheers on the television she told me to quit staring at her. When the dog walked by her Rachel pushed her away.
I began to wonder if I had somehow slipped into another dimension. Who is this child and what have the aliens done with my daughter? I finally just sent her to her room because I was out of ideas and she didn't want to hear anything I had to say anyway. Very perplexing.
My mother has said that when I was the age Rachel is now - almost eight - I began to have distinct monthly mood swings.
I'm not ready for this. I don't think I ever will be.