I assumed that as The Spawn got older I would have more time for my own personal interests. It makes sense, doesn't it? At 13, she doesn't require constant supervision. She can entertain herself. I can leave her alone in the house without being arrested for child neglect. She spends most of her evenings doing homework anyway. Unfortunately, I have found that I seem to have less free time and am generally more exhausted than when she was 8 - 10 years old.
I was bewildered by this until last night when The Man shed some light my situation.
Yesterday evening a friend came over to play games. We spent about 4 hours together including eating pizza for dinner. The Spawn declined our invitation to join us for either the games or dinner. She spent the evening doing homework in her room, facebooking her friends and watching Netflix. She didn't want pizza so she made her own dinner and ate in the kitchen.
Sounds great doesn't it? An evening playing games with no family responsibilities. You all with babies and toddlers are thinking how easy my life is. And I was feeling like it was easy.
When my friend left, and I went upstairs and discovered The Spawn in my bed watching Netflix, homework finished, showered and in her PJs, I was feeling like my life was better than easy - it was awesome.
Then The Spawn said, in the saddest voice ever, "You ignored me all night."
And then I felt like crap. I was a bad, bad mom.
As I was contemplating my total failure as a parent and a human being in general, the Man stuck his head in the door and said, "We were playing games and eating pizza. You ignored us."
So I've decided that tomorrow I'm finally going to start painting Dreadfleet. There's plenty of paintbrushes for the whole family, but if The Spawn wants to ignore me, she can.