Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Pass Me a New Pair, Please

I began writing a post on the amazing properties of Mommy Goggles, which polish up the best parts of motherhood to such a rosy glow that we simply can't see the horrible parts (and as an added bonus make our own children, no matter how hideous, look truly beautiful to us) when my own gorgeous daughter called to me.

"Mommy? There's a musical instrument in my room."

Since Kays is supposed to be taking a nap, I'm not quite sure why she is affected by this. We do not have musically inclined poltergeists in our house, so said musical instrument is, I assume, laying harmlessly and quietly on her floor.

"Kays, don't worry about it. Go to sleep."

"But Mommy! I need to put it away!"

God knows, when your child wants to clean up, you do not stand in her way. Encourage that slave tidy gene!

"Okay, honey, bring it in here and then go back to bed."

Kays brings said instrument (a tambourine, if you're interested) into the living room and lays it carefully, lovingly, in the music bucket. Yes, we have a music bucket. Don't ask.

Mission accomplished, she comes over to me. "Mommy, I'm not sleepy. I want quiet time."

In our house, quiet time is mommyspeak for, "Go away. Go to your room, shut the door, and don't bother Mommy for the next two hours. Mommy needs a margarita and a bubble bath."

(Come on, now, anyone who knows me knows I don't do margaritas!)

My daughter, however, only knows that quiet time means she doesn't have to nap. Seeing as how I have this idea for a post about Mommy Goggles and I need some time to myself to get a-postin', I graciously allow her to have quiet time. Pull out the laptop, get comfy in the recliner, and--

"Mommy, there's a frog in my room!"

(This is not nearly as dramatic as she makes it seem. It's a rubber frog. A realistic rubber frog, but rubber nonetheless.)

"Kays, just put it in the hallway if it's bothering you." Which is a load of crap, because my daughter is a boy in disguise, and loves things like frogs, snakes, lizards, bats, bugs, spiders, etc. I could go on and on. But I won't.

Despite clear instructions from her mother, who is desperately trying to get her (very funny) thoughts on Mommy Goggles posted and does not need any further interruptions from small children who should been unseen and unheard at this time of day, Kays walks out of her room to put the frog in the animal bucket. Yes, we have an animal bucket. Don't ask.

She's putting the toy away, so on one hand, that's good. However, she's deliberately leaving her room, so in the other hand I'm seeing lots of bad. Instead of reprimanding her, I start counting. In Casa de Madness, the short people get to the count of 2 to stop doing whatever it is that they are currently annoying the tall people by doing. If the tall people get to 3, the short people are in Time Out. Do not pass Go, do not collect $200. Time Out (yes, it must be capitalized) is extremely unappealing to the short people in Casa de Madness, so the counting threat usually works well.

It also helps that when the word "THREE!" is spoken aloud, a short person will be sitting in Time Out, come hell or high water. No threats without follow-through here, no siree. We are lean, mean, Time Out-enforcing machines.

"One. Two." Long pause while I debate if it's really worth it to say three out loud, thus ensuring a histrionic fit and scattering all post-worthy thoughts to the wind. However, as per the above paragraph, once began, the Time Out countdown cannot be stopped. "Three. Time Out."

"NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! I don't want Time Out! Nooooooo! I'm in my room! I'm in my room! I don't wanna nononononononooooooooo!"

(Insert eyeroll and loud sigh on my part.) I enforce the Time Out, during which my precocious spawnling cries and carries on. "Kays, if you are this upset and grumpy, maybe you should nap instead of having quiet time."

Ominous pause.

(If you have ever spent any time with a small child, you know this is the pause in which said child is sucking all the air out of the room so as to have more with which to scream.)


Oh. My. Lord.

The screaming, pleading and sobbing (real, honest-to-goodness crocodile tears, nach!) continued even as I put her back in bed. She didn't stop as I told her to have a good nap. She didn't stop as I kissed her then walked out her door. She didn't stop as I sat down in the living room and tried to concentrate on my blog. She didn't stop as I yelled over her noise for her to quiet down and go to sleep. She didn't stop as my Mommy Goggles slowly cracked, splintering in front of my very eyes. She didn't stop as I stood up, crushed my Mommy Goggles into crystallized dust particles, ground them into the carpet, and stomped down the hallway to her room. She didn't stop as I (dramatically, I admit) threw open her door and asked her if she'd like to spend the rest of the day in her room. She didn't stop until she held out her arms to me and said, "You made me so sad."

Kill shot.

I take her into my arms, dry her tears, and love on her. We talk about her time out. We talk about napping, or at least trying to nap even if you're not tired. We talk about listening to Mommy. We talk about how we can't always do what we want. We end with a kiss and hug, and a compromise that she will try napping for the next 30 minutes.

I lay her into bed, cover her up with her blanket du jour. Turn on her Baby Einstein lullaby CD, and walk out of her room filled with a warm, loving, perhaps even rosy glow for my baby girl. Once again, I sit down and start ty--

"Mommy? I'm thirsty!"

Looks like the universe's supply of Mommy Goggles is funneling into Virginia these days.


Anonymous said...

ok that has to be the best post I've read in all of 2007! Well - almost but as a mom with a small I mean child I laughed out loud and reread the post because I was smiling so much I couldn't NOT read it twice.

WOW ! I was in your home while I read it too - I could see it all - hear it all!

Thanks for sharing - amazing writing.

The Woman Formerly Known as Jenn said...

Aww, thank you! Coming from someone as intelligent as you, I take that as an enormous compliment. Glad I could make you laugh :-).