First, I want to say that I will not traumatize my daughter by posting the photo on the left. She laughs hysterically whenever she sees it. I snapped it on a family outing a couple of weeks ago when she went into a dramatic crying session for no apparent reason. She is 100% pure emotion, usually at an extreme high (bouncing off the walls) or low (the depths of despair). She is truly a drama queen.

Yesterday afternoon while straightening my formal living room/school room, I discovered several spots of of neon pink ink splattered in the carpet. While grilling the kids for information, I learned that my 6-year-old daughter had done this two days earlier. I was not only upset about the stain, but that no one had told me about it.

I’ve found over the years that many people consider me to be very calm and even-tempered, in spite of our large family. Last night would have changed their minds. I was furious about the ink stains and not being told. I read a blog post recently where the blogger (unfortunately, I can’t remember which blog – sorry!) was trying not to raise her voice with her children. Every time she did, she would place money (25 cents?) in a jar. At the end of the month, she would buy her kids something with the money in the jar. I’m not sure that I’m remembering this correctly, but I think that was the gist of it. If that were our household, I’d owe my kids a new PlayStation this month after last night.

My kids had gotten little neon-inked pens as party favors recently. Apparently my daughter had chewed on a pen and it broke in her mouth, and she spit the ink on the floor. While (unsuccessfully) working on the stain and venting about it, I realized that my daughter was repeatedly wailing, “But what was I supposed to do? I would have died!” In her mind, the ink would have killed her; therefore it was unfeeling and downright unmotherly that I was upset about the stain. “But why didn’t you tell me?” I said. She countered with, “But you were on the phone!” For two days? I was on the phone for TWO DAYS?!!!!!!!!!! I don’t actually believe I was on the phone when it happened, but it worked for the drama of her near-death experience story. How do you argue with this kind of logic?

After repeatedly hand and steam cleaning the carpet (here I go again), I finally found just the right stain remover and saved the carpet; however, somehow I still feel like the bad guy in this story. I was the queen bee in my household for the first eleven years of my marriage, when it was my husband, first three sons, and I. The addition of four daughters has added a whole new element: high drama. There will come a day when they will almost all be teenagers at the same time. Heaven help us.

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