The Friday before mother’s day, Yaya had a drama performance that finished at 8.30 pm. She called me at 6 pm that evening to tell me that her friend has organized a post drama party and everyone is going and she is going as well.
I have 3 rules when it comes to my children attending parties/sleeping over.
1. No last minute planning.
2. No sleeping over at the houses of people whom I have never met.
3. No taking public transport after 7 pm
Obviously calling up at 6 pm to tell me about a party that evening was against rule number 1 and breaking the rules progressed as I found out that the party is at a house of a girl I have never met and her house is an hour away from school and all the kids are taking a bus after the drama performance, that too on a Friday.
Yaya and her friends also did another thing that really pissed me off. I am friendly with two other mothers and they chose to ask the busiest mom, who was in the middle of a video conference to ask if her daughter could attend the party and have a sleepover. Once they got the permission, then Yaya called me to say “E’s mom already gave permission, so what is your problem?” I hate being pitted against other moms and if I relented now, my child is going to do this every time.
Obviously I said “No, you are not going to a party because you didn’t let me know in advance, you didn’t introduce me to your friend and I am not happy you taking public transport late in the evening” But being the nice mom that I am, I thought I will give her a bit of leeway and told her I will let her go for the party but I will pick her up by 10.30 pm. But she wanted to stay until 1 AM and there was no way I was willing to drive 2 hours ( back and forth) with my younger children in the car at that hour.
Yaya send me a txt saying how much she hates me, what a horrible paranoid mother I am and how she counts the minutes to finally leave my home.
I replied that I am sorry that she feels this way, but my job is to protect her and make sure she is safe.
She argued that in 2 years she will be able to attend any late night parties, so why not now and I replied in two years, if anything goes wrong, she will have to live with the consequences, but my conscience will be clear.
I wish I had another mother, she responded.
I replied, I know how annoyed you are with me and I am sorry you feel this way, but my rules were not something that happened this evening, this has been the rules from the beginning and it isn’t my fault that you didn’t follow them.
She replied , as if you would have let me go, if I told you in advance.
Belum cuba, belum tahu ( not try, not know) No? I replied
I did feel bad that only Yaya wasn’t allowed to go for the party and I knew how upset my child was. But what else was I supposed to do?
I picked her up after the drama. She gave me the silent treatment, didn’t give me a good night kiss and all of Saturday she didn’t talk to me. Sunday was mother’s day and I woke up wondering how my day was going to pan out. I could smell muffins being baked and assumed it would either be my son or baby. After waiting for eternity, my youngest came to my bedroom, wished me Happy mother’s day and told me ” breakfast is ready”
I was really surprised to see Yaya in the kitchen baking. She baked rapberry, white chocolate muffins because she knows how much I love white chocolate. There are no words to describe the relief I felt. She gave me a hug and wished me and gave me the letter I posted few days ago.
I am extremely weary of saying “no” to my children. ( mostly because every “no” my mother said, I disobeyed her. In my defence, my mother was totally irrational, and partly because I don’t want to make my children rebellious)
I learned that sometimes, you have to say “no” and even though your child will not be happy with you, they will understand eventually why you said “No”.