Friday, May 29, 2009

Evil Has a Face, and It Is Mine

The other night was one of those rare Texas nights. One where it's in the 70's, which happens about 5 nights a year here. After dinner, I decided the kids and I should take advantage of the perfect temperatures and sit in the front yard while Sweetie Pie did the dishes inside.

Little Man wasn't wearing any pants (I know, shocker!), something he pointed out to me as we were walking out the door, but I figured hi shirt was long and he was wearing some kick-ass Grover underroos, so good enough.

Because I'm classy like that.

You might remember a year ago when I blogged about our policeman neighbor (in this incident that probably shouldn't be revisited as it shows that I am of the highest level of incompetence. In case you were wondering? Cop neighbor never did get any kind of cookies. And two months after he moved in? Sweetie Pie's truck got broken into in front of our house. Twice in two weeks. Should have made more cookies.)

As the kids and I were sitting in the front yard, said policeman neighbor pulled up to his house and began to back into his driveway, which confused Little Man. Since I couldn't provide an answer as to why one would back into one's driveway, I chose to point out, instead, that the man doing the backing up was in fact a policeman.

"Is he coming to get bad people?," Little Man asked.

I knew that I had to pick my words carefully here, to ensure that I didn't cause nightmares in my three-year old, since if there's one thing I like, it's my sleep.

"I don't think so, there aren't bad people around here."

And then I got this thought in my head. And I wish to God that someone had been around to just punch my lights out at that moment, because what the hell was I thinking?


Little Man looked at me intently.

"Unless what, Mama?

- Unless he's here to throw little boys who aren't wearing pants in jail."

Little Man got this look of horror on his face, but I smiled and told him I was just kidding, which for most normal people would be enough, but not my abnormal three year old.

Because the universe hates me, it so happens that day was our trash day, and policeman neighbor got out of his truck at that exact moment and began to walk in full uniform down his driveway to fetch his trash can.

Except that to my three year-old, it looked like said policeman in full uniform was walking down his driveway towards us.

And he proceeded to wail at the top of his lungs, big fat tears rolling down his face, "I DON'T WANT TO GO TO JAIL!"

Cue neighbor who has yet to ever meet me, since I've never brought him baked goods, looking in our direction with a very puzzled look and clearly wondering if my three year old was the meth lab running preschooler they've been looking for this whole time.

I giggled and yelled at our neighbor "He thinks you're going to arrest him for not wearing any pants outside!"

Dear policeman neighbor: we are not criminals. Simply partial nudists.

It took much coaxing to convince Little Man that he was not in fact going to be in a place where dropping the soap in the tub means his little brother is going to try to eat it.

Since then, anytime I mention going outside, Little Man says "this time, we're going to the backyard."

I believe I deserve that.



Saturday, May 23, 2009

Seven Months: My Letter to Tiny Man

So if there was ever any doubt before, the last month has confirmed that you are going to be my trouble maker. During the past month, you've mastered the art of sitting up, which is one of my favorite milestones because hurray! I can leave you on your quilt with toys long enough to do important things like run to the bathroom or pour myself another shot of Bailey's Irish Cream. However, with sitting up, you've also learn to propel yourself towards objects you must have, which means that leaving you unsupervised is a little like leaving an unattended torpedo. You've propelled yourself straight onto the fireplace, into the coffee table, onto our old dog (who I think is still nursing internal injuries from your crushing weight) and into a bush. Yet none of these things phase you, because you're super baby, made of unbreakable steel where no head injury will get you down.

I hate to admit it, but this month, you fell on your head. So if 18 years from now you wonder why you've only gotten into the University of Texas medical school rather than Yale, you can blame me. It was so stupid, really. I did something that as a second-time mom I should know better than do. I left you on our bed unattended. And those famous last words, it was just for a few seconds, just long enough to turn the bath off. But during those few seconds, you rolled over and when I glanced over, your legs were dangling over the side of the bed. I ran over as quickly as possible, but those 10 feet suddenly became the length of a football field and suddenly I watched you fall off the bed as your perfect little head smacked your father's nightstand on the way down. The noise still sickens me as it replays every time I think of that horrible moment. And to this day, I swear to you that it was my worst moment as a mother. Never before have I hated myself so much as that moment. I could only cradle your wailing body, too scared to look at you closely because the idea of seeing your head split open was more than I could bear.

I sat there for a second, holding you, but mostly trying to hold myself together. I whispered to your brother to go get your father, who was outside taking out the trash. I heard your big brother open the door and yell out "Daddy! Mama threw Tiny Man on the floor!" and still, the humor of the situation couldn't touch my devastated mind who was convinced that I had forever broken you. Although you are fine, completely fine, a small bump the only result of that incident, I still hated myself for days, the guilt all-consuming. I hope I never, ever forget that moment, because it's reminded me that complacency, even if it is just for one second, can hurt those I love the most.

You continue to have no teeth, which could be a result of that accident, however you continue to drool. All of your pictures of this month have you in wet shirts, so that you look like a drunk college girl on Spring Break or a miniature fat sweaty man. You stick your whole fist in your mouth on a regular basis and have gotten into the habit of smearing your drooly fist on anything of mine you can reach, my shirt, my hair, my face, anything that will help remove the drool off you. And honestly? I love you to pieces, kid, I mean, I've wiped more explosive atomic poops from your butt than anyone else, because seriously, there is no diaper on Earth that can hold some of your poops. But it doesn't mean that I appreciate having your drool smeared all over me on a regular basis.

Which speaking of poop? I need to mention the strangest incident that occured the other day. I was changing your diaper, and it was just a wet one, when I noticed something strange between your clenched butt cheeks. Only a mother would do what I did next, but I pulled out the strange object and looked at it. You're reading this mortified, and as a guy, you will never understand why I would do this, but trust me, kid, it's the mom gene and we must analyze anything found in the glutteus maximus region of our children. Anyway, the foreign object was an intact fruit puff. Which still confuses me to this day, because one, how the hell did it get there? Did you consume it and it came out intact? Because those things dissolve just from looking at them. Or two, were you just saving it for later? Because if that's the case, I must teach you Hygiene 101, which the first lesson is one does not keep food where one has poop smeared around on a regular basis.

Also? I need to address your hair-pulling issues. Seriously kid, I'm not some kind of vine for you to hang on to. It's amazing I have any hair left when you regularly remove entire clumps with your chubby little fists. But it's hard to stay mad at you when I yelp in pain as blood pours down the side of my scalp and you look up at me and grin. Of course, I must tell you that in about 15 years, if you continue to grin at people as you cause them pain, you will no longer be considered cute, you'll have crossed the line into psychopath. So your cute days are numbered, my little psychopath.

You're currently on a mission to become mobile. You've mastered the inch worm scoot backwards and can regularly be found multiple feet away from where I left you. And I've got to tell ya, I'm terrified. Because I already know that you won't be like your brother and that the basic childproofing we got away with the first time will be laughed at with maniacal glee by my chubby monkey.

You continue to adore your big brother, and if I had to rank the people in your life in order of preference, I believe they would be as follows:

- Your big brother
- The dog
- Me
- Your favorite teacher
- Daddy

Some mothers would be upset at coming in third place, however, I consider myself grateful to have come in your top five, because you are quite fond of all those people we meet at the grocery store, and you could easily decide you like them all better.

The other day, I lifted your infant seat out of the car and you were asleep as I was placing it in the shopping cart. The sun hit your face in such a way that you literally began to glow. Your beauty literally took my breath away. I stood there, in that parking lot unable to move, to breathe, to do anything else but watch you sleep in the sunlight, the wind playing with your wispy hair. That moment froze time and I'm unsure as to how long I stood there, but I wanted to stand there forever, just like that, because as much as I knew you were perfect, in that moment I could truly see that you are the most beautiful baby on Earth. Pictures can't seem to capture just how truly gorgeous you are. You have the face of an angel, the eyes of perfection, the softest skin I've ever been lucky enough to kiss. I don't know how I managed to create such a perfect little creature, and in case a day goes by that I forget to tell you this, please know that I don't ever forget how lucky I am to have you and your brother in my life. You truly, truly are the most perfect baby on Earth. I can't even begin to imagine what life would be without you in it. We are all lucky that you decided to join our family.

I love you, my Tiny Man,


Thursday, May 21, 2009

The Awesomeness of Having Two Boys

Since I won't have time to write Tiny Man's 7-month newsletter today (yes, I'm sucking worse and worse at this), instead, I give you the kind of gooey caramel-filled cuteness that is my life these days. If this doesn't make your ovaries hurt, than you're definitely single and in your early 20's and I say power to you!

Laughing Boy from Catwoman InTexas on Vimeo.



Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Proof My Three Year-Old is More Advanced Than I Am

So my boss was in town last week. And since I'm me, it meant that having my boss in town sent me into the circus performer version of Catwoman. The circus performance version of me involves me being in especially hyper mode, where I do everything I usually do, except I speak even louder and I do cartwheels and I bow at random times. Also? It usually involves flaming hula-hoops and me jumping through them while spinning plates.

I always drive myself nuts when I go into circus-performer mode, but it's one of those things I just can't seem to stop myself from doing. Because I. Must. Impress. Big. Boss.

As part of my "Look at how fantastic Catwoman is" campaign during the Big Boss' visit, I regaled her with tales of my hard work, teamwork and bikini waxings.

I'm kidding on that last part.

At least I hope I am. I tend to get diarrhea of the mouth when I'm in circus performer mode, so there is the odd chance that I might have over-shared.

One tale I told her, in front of a random co-worker, was of how I took it upon myself to clean the office fridge one day a few weeks back.

"That fridge was disgusting!" I said. "I threw out all sorts of food, including pickles that expired in 2007 and string cheese that expired in 2009."

Random co-worker looks at me and says "So you're the one.

- I'm the one what?

- You're the one who threw people's lunches out.

(pause) - What do you mean?

Big Boss: - You do realize we're in 2009 now, right?

- Wh-what?

- You said you threw out food that was expiring in 2009.

(pause) - Huh. I wonder what the hell was going through my head that day.

- Uhm, you said it again right now, so apparently you still think we're in 2010.

- Huh. (pause) So how about them Mavs?



Saturday, May 02, 2009

Forty-Four Months: My Letter to Little Man

So I am so beyond late with this newsletter that I'm guessing I'm out of excuses. But in my defense, the last two weeks have included complete madness at work, the death of our cat, a diagnosis of diabetes for our dog and a family emergency. Oh, also? You and I have been very busy couponing.

You're just about as obsessed as I am. You know which stores have the best carts, you can now read the names of all of our favorite stores whenever we pass another location, and you even bring papers in the car, because you can't leave the house without your own coupons, now can you?

You've said so many funny things this month, that it's been hard to keep track of them. Like after you took a sip of V-8 Fusion juice for the first time: "I like this juice, it smells just like donuts."

If V-8 Fusion needs a new spokesperson, I'm thinking you could make them gazillionaires with that tagline.

The other day, I walked into the bathroom to wipe your behind and I caught you wiping the floor with toilet paper.

"Little Man, what are you doing?

- Poop fell out of my butt onto the floor."

Of course.

After getting your first taste of cookie dough: "I like the mushy cookies. We should have these for breakfast."

Does this mean I don't have to buy frozen waffles anymore?

When I told you we were going to have lunch at Chick-Fil-A:

"How come? Do you have a coupon for Chick-Fil-A?"

Shockingly? I didn't. But I appreciate the fact that you assumed I must.

I always let you sleep in my bed when your dad's out of town. On one Saturday night when he was gone, I told you that it was time to go to sleep.

"Are you coming to bed too, Mama?

- Not right now, I've got a little more work to do.

- If you want, you can use your computer next to me, but don't wake me up, ok?"

You started Tae Kwon Do this past month and you love it more than just about anything else. I never know how you're going to react to these things, but you took to that class like a fish to water. In fact, you take it so seriously that the teacher has mentioned to your father numerous times how smart you are. And you are. But you're not only smart, you are one of those strange creatures that refuses to act like a normal three-year old. Goofing off? Unheard of! While your friends purposely fall down or focus their attention on other things, you stand their, in front of your instructor, alert, ready to act on any of her commands, a look of concentration on your face the entire time, because perfection is what you expect of yourself.

I taught you how to play Tic Tac Toe this month and you are now striving to become world champion in the sport. Any paper and pen you find is an opportunity to practice your new skills. You liked Tic Tac Toe so much, that I've now bought you your first Uno game and you've obsessively played with me hand after hand after hand. I can't wait until you're old enough to learn the intricacies of a great Backgammon game. I foresee many nights of you and I slumped over boardgames, laughing as we try to destroy each other.

You're the best big brother I've ever met. No one can make Tiny Man laugh harder than you and the look of adoration he bestows on you takes my breath away. It reminds me of how my own baby sister used to look at me so many years ago. I was not a good big sister, and her and I took many years to heal many years of pain. I want to say we're finally there now, but so many years were wasted on misunderstandings and pain and hurt feelings. I hope you and your brother don't experience this, and I'll make sure that I do everything I can to grow the budding friendship between the two of you.

I love you, my Little Man,