Dear kids I babysit

To the kids I babysit,  

You guys are right, I am so malicious because I won’t let you jump off the top of the 30 foot slide at the park. I know you think all I do is yell at you, but maybe if you could listen for five seconds without turning your back and saying “whatever” we could get along. When you are constantly mocking me and talking back to me don’t be surprised when I get frustrated with you. You guys just don’t comprehend that in the time you complain about doing homework you could have finished it all and played outside. I get it, doing ten addition problems is basically like trying to build an atomic bomb. Next time you want to tell me I am doing the problem wrong just remember I passed the second grade.  Please just let me help you.

Just because I only let you read one book at bedtime doesn’t mean you need to meltdown like nuclear plant. It’s unnecessary for your face to turn bright crimson, your eyes to well up with a flood of tears and squeezing your fists so tight they could crush a rock. As you open your mouth and begin to wail and flail your fist at me, I feel helpless. How am I suppose to reason with you when you won’t let me get one word in. Hate to break it to you but the reason you’re screaming your head off is because you are tired and should be sleeping. Please put your fist down. Please stop screaming. Please lay down. Just please go to sleep.

When your brother takes your two-week-old deflated, washed out purple balloon away from you is it really necessary to sob for 20 minutes? You didn’t care about the faded, lilac balloon sitting in the corner accumulating dust two minutes ago. Before you throw the red plastic ambulance at him realize that will only make everything 100 times worse. There is no reason to cross your arms and give me the face someone makes after eating a sour lemon. IT’S A BALLOON! You will learn one day that the world is filled with bigger problems than your balloon being taken away. When I try to calm you down, just please listen to me.

On the one hand, I understand you guys are under the age of ten and are still figuring out how this whole respect your elders thing works. You guys are confused on why calling me a big, stupid dummy may not be the kindest thing. I acknowledge you haven’t fully learned how to cope with life when you miss a nap or snack. But on the other hand, I still insist that you are old enough to listen to directions and have respect for others and their feelings.There is no reason to pound your fist so hard on the table the floor shakes. Just take a deep breath.

You kids don’t understand how frustrating it is when you won’t get into your car seats. When you kick your feet against the back of the seat causing dusty, gray footprints to appear on the black leather. Maybe I’m rushing you because there are cars zooming by at 30 miles per hour, but no big deal let’s just sit on the side of the road with the door open.  Please just sit down.

Do you think I enjoy yelling at you and having you telling me I am not in charge? I can’t even wrap my head around why it is so hard for you to listen. When I say it is time to clean up so you can read a book before bedtime, why must you start throwing your toys everywhere?  Please just understand I am doing what is best for you and not being mean. If you followed my instructions there would be no meltdowns, no tantrums and no unfairness.