I won the award tonight for dumb parenting decisions. First of all, I let you play with wipes in the tub. I prayed, as I watched them slowly disintegrate into tiny phlegmy strips, kind of like the weird culture on the bottom of a kambucha bottle, that I could hide it from your Dad. My plan was to get you in your pj’s and then tackle the problem myself. No harm, no foul. However, your father decided that tonight, for the first time EVER, he was going to take a shower right after your bath. I winced when he announced this and kept silent. Hoping, maybe, just maybe, the tub would have miraculously suddenly spontaneously drained while we wrestled with your pajamas and he would none be the wiser. It did not go down like that. Those wispy tendrils of wipes clung stubbornly to the drain, allowing scant amounts of water to pass through. He asked me about it. With only his underwear on and the shower running. I told him that you “somehow” got some wipes into the tub and I failed to notice. Oops!! He didn’t buy it. I promised him they were biodegradable and that eventually, by the sheer facts of nature, the tub would in fact, drain. It may not be now, or even today, but by tomorrow, or maybe even Tuesday, the tub would be clear. He said we would have to call a plumber.
Next, after singing songs, tickling arms, and telling stories about a fish named Frou Frou and an eel named Kinky, I finally had you good and ready for bed. We hugged and kissed goodnight. Lots of kisses. Lots of hugs. All was well, until, as I walked out the door, I turned and said “Nighty Night!” as I always do. To which you replied, “Nighty Night!” as you always do, and then, as I was walking out the door, for reasons unbeknownst to me, I turned back and said happily, “Sleep tight, don’t let the bed bugs bite, and if they do, squeeze them tight, so they don’t come back another night!” And bam, the tides changed. Suddenly you started whining slightly and I knew it. Oh shit. Bed bugs biting equals bad. Dumb mommy!! I went back to your bed and consoled you, reassuring you that there were no bugs and nothing was going to bite you. You seemed very suspicious but let me go anyways requesting Daddy’s turn to tell you a story. After Dad did his story time and came upstairs I heard you crying. I went back down and asked what was wrong. You told me to turn on the light. You said a lady bug had bit you. I hugged you, turned out the light, sang you 50 million more songs, snuggled with you cheek to cheek, told you a thousand times it was just a stupid little rhyme from Mommy’s childhood and that nothing bad was going to happen to you. That you were safe. Finally, you said you were okay as long as I tucked you in tightly under you pink fuzzy blankie. Which I did. And when I came upstairs, your Dad quietly said, “That’s probably something better said when she is three.” I know. I know. I just pray this goes away but I fear you obsess like I do. Wish they had GABBA supplements for kids.
Which brings me to the neurotic tic you seem to have picked up from me. It breaks my heart every time you do it, and I wish I could just take it away, but you have taken up lip picking. Oh man. I am so embarrassed to even admit this and I hope by the time you read this it is a feint memory. But you are picking your lips until they bleed. We keep reminding you to stop but you get upset when we do, as if you are embarrassed to be caught. I know the feeling, only too well. It sucks. I can only imagine how many times you have seen me absentmindedly doing it and thinking, I should do that too. I am trying to be more aware. I promise.
By the way, you have said dumbass, motherfucker, dickneck and dammit. I blame your father for the first two. The funny thing is, you know they are “bad” words when you say them. You get this mischievous look in your eye. Damn you are smart!! You are so smart, and clever and feisty. You are also sweet. So sweet. You told me the other day that you were “loving Bug up.” So it’s not all bad. Not at all, in fact, it is so good. So mind blowingly good. I am LOVING this age. I am loving hanging out with you. We get to have actual conversations and I get a peak into the marvelous working if your little mind! I still trip out watching you, completely baffled that you came out of my body. I mean, really, you CAME OUT OF MY BODY. That is so fucking weird. You are a part of me and you always will be. I am crazy in love with you. I worry that I kiss you and hug you and tell you I love you too much. That I will smother you. But people assure me, you can’t love a child too much.
I was inspired to write this blog because I was talking to a very dear friend of mine and she wasn’t able to tell her 18 year old daughter what she was like when she was a toddler and how deeply sad that made her. I realized that part of the reason I was writing this was so that we could keep a record of all the things I am destined to forget. I hope I never do, but just in case, this is you through me. And I shall continue to document as much as I can.
Right now you are in school three days a week at Segray in Atwater. You love it there. You have little friends! They have names like Roxy, Izzy, and Lula. You are in a dance class on Fridays where you learn your “moves.” The teachers are amazing. Especially Teacher Diane. She loves you. I can tell. They all do. It’s a very special place and I feel really happy that we found it. And it’s not cheap. By any means. But you are worth it.
This was Oscar weekend here in Los Angeles and in the spirit of we took you to your first ever full length feature film! It was the Oscar winning animated film Frozen. I had to take you out three times because it was too scary for you- when the Queen Elsa turns everything to ice, when the wolves are chasing the sled, and when the giant snow man attacks Princess Anna and Christoph. You hid your head in my neck as I shuttled you out. But then once outside, we talked about how it was just a movie, that it wasn’t real, and that no one was hurt and you said you wanted to go back in, that you didn’t want to go home. And eventually, we made it to the end! I worried it was too intense and wished we had chosen another movie instead but I tried so hard not to pick at my lip the entire time because of it and to just enjoy the ride. So if you need therapy over this, you can bill me. I promise the next one will be something cool like the animated The Wind Rises by that super awesome Asian dude Miyazaki. Oh Hollywood. So seductive. Always.
You. At the movies.
I wish I could have shared your popcorn with you, but unfortunately, I have recently quit every good tasting addictive processed dairy gluten starchy sweet thing known to man so that I can be present for you as you grow older. I know we started late, but that doesn’t mean we have to act like it.
I love you. We love you. Everyone loves you.