I admire my son’s dedication to not do what he doesn’t want to do. There’s no hesitation on his part to commit fully to a mildly unpleasant task to avoid something else.
On many days the boy wakes up too early for my liking. On my non-working mornings I’m a devoted sleeper and a four-year-old will not alter that. Stop laughing, I mean it. When he comes into my room and asks me, “Is it morning time?” I answer, “No,” put him back in his bed and like a good press secretary I tell him no questions. I’m snoozing again before my greasy hair slides onto my ice-cold Firmapedic pillow. End of story… not quite.
On weekdays my wife rises before the sun, so she’s awake and making herself even more beautiful in the powder room when the boy gets out of bed again. He heads right to her because he knows I’ll be of no help to his needs and she’s much easier on his squinted little baby-grays. During his face-to-face he informs her that he has to go poopie. Despite her doubt of his sincerity and honesty she dutifully succumbs to his wishes and lets him hop on the throne. Ignoring his request isn’t an option because both she and I have witnessed the end result of denying bathroom privileges to a child whom I thought had cried wolf. It’s not a mistake you make more than once.
She gets back to the business of getting ready for another day in the rat race while he sits there mostly quietly. Every couple of minutes he asks, “Is it morning time?” She answers, “No,” and he continues to sit and wait.
Eventually I stroll out of the bedroom at a more reasonable hour. He asks again, “Is it morning time, Mommy?”
This time she says, “Yes, it is.”
“I’m done,” he says and peels himself off of the toilet seat.
His wobbly little legs deliver him to the sink to wash his hands and he looks at me. “It’s morning time, Daddy.”
My wife peeks in the bowl to discover that it’s… empty. This product of my procreation would rather sit on the pot for forty-five minutes than lay in bed for that amount of time. The little guy had the foresight to crap where he sleeps a long time ago just to set this up. Diabolical! Hopefully he’ll someday use his over-sized brain for good or better yet, my gain.
copyright Linus Mann 2009
At a gathering of 1st graders and Kindergarteners, one girl’s story stood out a little more than the others. Actually, it stood out way more than the others. That little girl is my six-year-old daughter.
The shorter female in my life is in a younger version of the group that hocks cookies for what seems like fifty weeks a year. Her group doesn’t participate in that drive, yet. They sell more valuable things like ornaments or disposable teapots.
At the first meeting of the new school year the girls were asked to say a little something about themselves. This is a great stepping-stone for their future public speaking engagements as flight attendants and auto show models.
When it was my silver-tongued angel’s turn to speak she didn’t miss a beat. Since the womb she’s been an extrovert, so this was right up her alley.
It went something like this, “Hello, my name is ____, I’m in first grade and my teacher’s name is ______. My brother likes to show me his penis.”
I wasn’t a witness to this, but one of the group leaders relayed it to me when I showed up at the end of the meeting. She started out by saying that my daughter created a YouTube moment. Then her face became beet red as she quoted my little future Dr. Ruth. During the speech this leader had to excuse herself from the circle because she didn’t want the kids to see her laughing and peeing herself. That’s when the other leader finished the story.
I guess my beautiful princess wasn’t done speaking. Let’s just say that she likes to be helpful. She’s considerate that way.
She finished with, “For those of you that don’t know what a penis is…” The leader that kept it together steered the conversation somewhere else before the anatomy lesson was concluded.
Before you condemn the parenting skills being applied at my household you should know the back-story. At my house penis is not a bad word, not that it’s a good word, it’s just a potty word. There is no shame attached to it, just the idea that it shouldn’t be thrown around willy-nilly. That morning’s events must have led my daughter to forget that potty words are for the bathroom, or at the most, our home. When I received a smooch good-bye from my wife who was leaving for work, my daughter yelled downstairs that her brother showed her his penis. It wasn’t as bad as it sounds. He just happened to escape from his bedroom half way through his dressing for the day. He ran around sans pants. He’s four, and my son,what do you expect? As you know, the last thing kids see sticks in their mind, even if it’s their brother’s penis.
The whole incident seems to have blown over quickly, but we’ll see at the next meeting. Maybe I’ll sneak in early to see whether my daughter’s gagged or being filmed for that next big viral video.