My folly this time was preparing a meal that I was 100% certain that Austin wouldn't eat, 93% certain that Erika wouldn't eat, and 57% certain that Nicole wouldn't eat. Why, we may all be wondering, did I prepare such a meal? Because you can only eat tacos and cold cereal so many times. Tonight I wanted to have what I wanted.
Our misadventure began shortly after Rick left for scouts. Austin, who had just been released from his room after his dinner tantrum, was found at the stove beginning to prepare a grilled cheese sandwich. When I explained to him that he wouldn't be having a grilled cheese sandwich since he passed on his dinner and told him he needed to start washing the dishes, he informed me in no uncertain terms that he was having a grilled cheese sandwich because he hated what I had made and proceeded to tell me that he wouldn't be doing the dishes. My reply started in a calm voice (the calm before the storm) but increased in volume and intensity as I went on. The end note of the tirade was that I am his mother and will be spoken to with respect and if he can't manage that, he doesn't need to speak to me at all. Not my finest moment, I confess, but he had attacked my potato soup.
I decided that I needed a time out to gather my wits and keep me from saying anything else that I might regret. I hid in my bedroom closet and enjoyed a miniature candy bar. There is nothing like a sugar band-aid to soothe the troubled soul. While in there, I heard the baby crying. I wasn't concerned, he was in his high chair and I assumed he was crying to get out. I heard the kids calling for me, but I didn't feel in control enough yet to reveal my hiding place. After a few minutes, Nicole opened the door, finding me calmly sitting on the closet floor. She told me that Erika had put pepper in the baby's eyes. When I got to the kitchen, I found Erika hiding under the table, and Alex with very red eyes and salt and pepper on his head. Upon further investigation, I discovered that she didn't intentionally put pepper in his eyes, he rubbed it in himself after she had seasoned him. After intense questioning she assured me that she had no intention of eating Alex for dinner, so I'm not sure what the point was of covering him with salt and pepper.
The lesson that I'm taking away from this experience is that there is a reason that people put the children in time out instead of going there themselves.