I did it. I took away the xBox. I am the worst mom...in the world.
It is a tower of evil. Or at least it starts a whole lot of fights in our house and I'm sick of it.
The last straw came last night when one boy called Husband while we were out with friends for a few drinks (out at a bar sounds so unresponsible and bad parent-like) to report that another boy had thrown his iPod against a wall. Hmm. "That's not good," Husband told boy on phone. "We're almost home. We'll talk about this when we get there."
But we didn't. Cause I just marched in the house, asked iPod thrower why he threw iPod and he replied, "Because he threw the xBox controls and ripped the cords out." I shoulda known. It always comes back to the xBox. Tower of evil, remember?
So I ripped the cords out of that box and now it rests in my room. Where it will remain for a loooooong time. Or maybe just all of Spring Break.
I've taken it away once before - for a week. It was a delightful week in our house. Once the boys accepted that, indeed, I meant to keep it for a whole week due to their abhorrent behavior in church - they actually (gasp!) FOUND OTHER THINGS TO DO. Less violent things. Things that didn't cause them to fight. Things that did not make their tween testosterone boil. Oldest boy - my sweet redhead - actually picked wildflowers for me and made a collage out of them with cardboard and tape and - get this - hung it above the living room doorway. It spelled out "Thanks Mom" in tiny little blue and white flowers. I was speechless. "What possessed you?" I asked. "I had to find something to do since we couldn't play the xBox," he said. Clearly he did not know how damning that statement was to his future video game enjoyment.
Memories of that blissful week swam around in my head when I heard them bickering this weekend while shooting one another on "Modern Warfare 3". They cannot simply commit murder and mayhem quietly. They have to call each other "dumbass" and "retard" while they do it and scream, "You're cheating!" This behavior prompted the "No Xbox on Sundays" edict that has been in place for about 6 months now. It gave me one day of peace and was intended to give them one day when they had to do something other than kill zombies. Typically, they'd ask to go to the neighbor's house because they didn't have the "No Xbox on Sundays" rule. Or the library, where there are rows upon rows of computers that they can kill each other on -- but they do have to be quiet about it. So they were getting around a loophole in the law, but I still had one day of peace in the house. So I didn't really care.
But because it was Spring Break, I relaxed this rule yesterday. And then somehow the thought of facing an entire week with these boys, off from school for Spring Break, fighting over whose turn it was or what game to play or who was the bigger idiot for shooting someone was just too much for me.
So it's gone. For the week. It is sunny out today, and I am going to make them ride bikes with me downtown. We will stop by the library and I will make them each check out a book that must be read during this week. We have plans to go camping in a few days and oldest boy turns 13 on Friday. This will be Spring Break Unplugged. I'll let you know how it goes.