Always and Never

Momservations: It’s either always or never – it can’t be both. Unless, of course, you have kids.

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 “It’s always my fault!”

If I NEVER let them do anything fun and am ALWAYS mean, this moment must have NEVER happened...

“I never get to do anything fun!”

“He always gets to go first!”

“She never gets in trouble!”

“You always say ‘No’!”

“You never let us go anywhere!”

Oh, my poor, deprived, persecuted children. Listening to them you’d think they are living in Little Libya and I’m the female Muammar Gaddafi.

Either that or they’ve suffered short term memory loss not remembering anything that happened in the previous minutes that would invalidate their Always and Never theories.

As a parent it drives me absolutely bonkers when my kids incorrectly use the phrases “always” and “never” in their sob story pronouncements. It’s right up there with adults (usually on the news channels) using “literally” incorrectly (“Next up we will feature a man who literally pounded the pavement to notify people of a sex offender in the neighborhood!” – Really? Hit the ground with his fists like a modern day smoke signal?)

So I like to have a little linguistic fun with them, which usually has the same effect on their self-righteous pity parties as throwing water on a cat.

“Oh really, you never get to do anything fun? Then you must never have been to Disneyland AND Disneyworld. And you must never have just had a birthday party scavenger hunt organized by your mean-never-let-you-do-anything mother. In that case, you probably will never get to go skiing on Spring Break this week because you never get to do anything!”

“Stop Mom, it’s not funny!”

“Boy, I would never want to be you. You never get to do anything fun!”

“Okay Mom! I get it! Please, stop!”

“What? I’m not doing anything. I would never do anything to make fun of you…”

Cue the glaring child with arms crossed who turns to stomp out of the room.

This morning I got to deal with an always snit. The martyred offender yelling, “How come it’s always my fault!”

 “Oh, I’m sorry Mother Teresa! I forgot you’re always a saint. You are always so kind and considerate to your sister. You always keep your hands to yourself and always only have the nicest things to say. You are always so helpful to her and always try to make her life nothing but pleasant.”

“Knock it off Mom, it’s not funny!”

“What? Should I have Daddy bring you some bread and water later because it’s always your fault so you must always be in your room?”

Cue the glaring child with arms crossed who turns to stomp out of the room.

Cut to Mom with a triumphant smile on her face who will never pass up an opportunity to always teach her kids a lesson. And sometimes poke a little fun at them too.

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