I happily recorded all of the sales in the book, then went through and updated the girls personal accounts who sold things. Such a happy task. I was excited because we’ve now sold more than 5,000 ssp of the girls merchandise ($1,250ish) in about 2.5 months. That’s exciting, right? I’m excited!
So as they’re trickling back in from school I find the girls who made sales and did what I always do–show them the sale in the book, tell them what it was they sold, the price, and then break down the percentage to buy more materials, the percentage for pocket money, and how much will go into their savings. Then I open to their page in another book and show them what I added, what the totals are for pocket and savings, and have them sign.
Uh…signing that you have money accumulating is a good thing, right? Its something I feel like I would enjoy. And, ok, I guess the girls are usually at least neutral about it if not happy. But for some reason on Monday evverrryyyonnneee was so grumpy. So dang grumpy! I wanted to heave the book over the fence! I got grimaces and rolled eyes and accusations and complaints. Complaints! Are you kidding me?!
The girls are generally annoyed with this concept of saving. I explain that it is money for their future. That it is for when they leave CCC or if there is an emergency or something and they need the money. At one time or another I’ve had girls explain that haircuts, dvd’s, snacks, and other silly things warrant an emergency and I should give them their money for the future. In the beginning I would laugh. But they’ve gotten more grumpy and accusatory with the whole thing. Yesterday a girl pushed her way into my room and sulked angrily and wouldn’t leave because she had already spent all of her pocket money and I wouldn’t give her any from her savings. Girls have threatened to run away and leave so I’ll give them their savings. It is emotionally exhausting doing something you know is good and beneficial for them and having them be, not only ungrateful a good part of the time, but downright mean about it.
And I think it is just exacerbated by the fact that I live with them. That at the end of the day I can’t go home and call it a day and be away from them and the frustrations for the evening. They knock on my door and stop me when I go to get dinner and it all starts again first thing in the morning, sometimes before I even roll out of bed. Relentless, is the word.
And yet, its not so bad. I love their little faces even though they metaphorically spit in mine sometimes. And after the grandiose frustration from Monday, Tuesday morning one of the older girls came to get some of her pocket money. She is talented and one of the harder working girls. She’s sold 3x more things than any of the other girls and has over 700ssp ($175ish) in her savings from the bead work. She said that no other girls her age are making money like this. I asked what she would use her money for someday. She said to by a plot of land. Her mother is a squatter in a cemetery nearby. Many people live there, it is a very poor area, as you can imagine. No one would choose to live in a cemetery unless your situation was dire. She told me that people who don’t buy a plot just end up back in the cemetery. My heart did a little leap. The thought of this bright girl not continuing in her family’s cycle of extreme poverty. So here is to her ad her future plot of land. I shall continue to plug along in spite of thanklessness and dealing with grumpy girls because that, that is what this is all about.