I picked up Alister from school today. His teacher mentioned he was behaving oddly about peeing in the toilet. There’s never been a problem. He’s become a pro at the whole thing. She said that he was insisting that he get to pee in the bushes. *sigh*
conversation with Alister when he is helping cook dinner:
Me: Honey, why are you licking the counter?
Alister: Mmmmm…. sugar.
Me: Ah, ok… wait, don’t drink that, it’s… olive oil. Too late.
Alister: Mmmm… onions.
Me: I’m glad you enjoy eating raw onions but I have to put those in a pan and cook them because they go in our dinner… so maybe save some please?
Alister: (grabs butter knife) I’ll cut this lemon for you. (lemon falls on floor, cut side down, because I already cut it in half)
Me: Careful with the knives… wait, what the?? DON’T DUMP THAT BOWL OF THYME IN YOUR HAIR!!!
Alister: Mommy, are you happy?
Me: Yes, I’m happy you want to help, just please listen to me, ok?
Alister: That’s ok mom, I still love you.
Once upon a time, we lived in a condo building. Besides Alister, there were three other children on our floor. Now, the good thing about having multiple families close by is having friends for everyone. The moms and dads have each other to commiserate with and the children have friends and it’s relatively easy to keep busy and find activities for everyone to be involved in. The bad thing is that when one of the kids brings home a foreign bacteria, you can count on the entire area to be on lock-down. Altogether, there were 3 boys and one girl. We believe the girl to be the culprit (what a bitch, right?)
The thing to remember when you send your child out into the world is that he/she should be wearing a hazmat suit at all times. One cough can lead to 2 weeks of despair. The girl in question spent the most time out in the world and therefore was the obvious scapegoat. She brought it into the building originally and then left to go back to her dad’s house just in time for everyone else to experience the fun.
The Sunday when things got completely out of hand, we were all having brunch together. It was a lovely time. We were all still in our pajamas, all I had to do was put Alister in his high chair and wheel it down the hallway to the neighbor’s place (sick girl’s mom’s). The oldest little boy was running around the table and suddenly he stopped and said “I don’t feel good”. And without further notice, he emptied the entire contents of his stomach right on the floor. To say he ruined the party would be an understatement.
Everyone high-tailed it out of there and ran for cover. Unfortunately, it was too late. Our friends, AM and ZM (not their real names), called us about 30 minutes later to tell us that their other little boy was suffering the same fate. There were fevers and bodily fluids from hell to breakfast all over their place. I think they had to give one of their sons a tylenol smoothie because 1 year olds don’t seem to enjoy taking medicine (who knew?)
We soon experienced the fun at our house. Now, the only good thing that ever comes out of having a sick child is that he/she might sleep a lot and want to cuddle. It’s a great excuse to sit in front of your favorite tv shows and get out of doing real work. Of course you can’t be bothered to scrub toilets and wash windows! Your little bucket of sunshine is sick! But really… there IS a downside. When you find yourself having to cover your floors with towels because there is projectile vomit flying around, THAT is when reality sets in and you’re ready for the fun to be over. We managed to get Alister situated in his own bed for a bit and AM was nice enough to bring us hamburgers. We sat down to regroup. A few bites in….
Aww, man. We went downstairs to Alister’s room to be greeted by the worst display of bodily fluids I’ve ever had the misfortune of seeing. I won’t go into any further detail because unless you are a parent, you’d be absolutely revolted by what we saw. We spent the next half hour cleaning the room and cleaning the child and finally cleaning it all off ourselves and went back upstairs where our food sat; cold and half-eaten. Now, most normal people would have lost their appetite and decided to go do something else, perhaps move onto drinking heavily to forget the horror scene in that room. Not us. We went back to eating like nothing ever happened.
The next day, I had to take Alister to the doctor. I don’t drive and my husband was at work. I was beginning to feel the sickness so luckily the doctor’s office was only a few blocks away and I could just throw him in the stroller and get on with it. We get there and see the doctor and are just about to leave when Alister decides to puke all over the doctor and me. I felt bad for the doctor, of course but I felt bad that it was a hot day and I was wearing sandals and there was puke in between my toes. I did my best to clean it off but still had the pleasure of walking home with puke squishing between my toes. (While I was fighting off my own urge to be sick everywhere because guess what? Moms don’t get to be sick! )
So finally we made it home about the same time Aaron did. He had to leave work early because guess what? He was sick too!! I’m trying hard not to be the martyr in this story but I feel as though I got the least amount of rest throughout this ordeal. I hear that a lot from other moms. Keep that in mind if you’re not a mom and you have one in your home to take care of you. Or a wife. If you’re the husband, take note of this and buy her lots of presents once you’re feeling better because she’s the one who can’t ever take sick days.
Also, if you are a non-parent, remember that having a child is not for the weak-stomached. You have to be able to clean up explosions that came from both ends, simultaneously and go back to eating lunch like nothing ever happened.
Aaron and I like to remember the good old days, back when we could read whatever we wanted to Alister at bedtime and he was ok with it. We have an extensive library of children’s books. We have very old books of fairy tales that belonged to my grandmother. We have the classics, we have newer and more action-packed books. We have various Disney stories. Back in these days, it didn’t matter who read the bedtime story or what we read. There was always a story and it was good. Even ridiculous reading material was ok. I came into Alister’s room once when Aaron was reading to him and asked what story it was.
Aaron: It’s a technical manual.
Me: Wait, Alister came with a manual and you’re just now reading it?
Aaron: No, I’m installing a program and have to read this anyway.
See? We could read anything to him. If people still used phone books, we’d have been ok to read one of those.
Now it’s become more difficult. I’m never allowed to read unless it’s the middle of the day and Aaron isn’t home. I’m like the emergency backup reader. We are stuck in the same books for… days? Weeks? Months at a time?? I start to lose track after awhile. I stopped remembering the words to my favorite songs because they were replaced by Green Eggs and Ham or The Sneetches. Now I miss those stories because we have moved onto various books in the Thomas Train empire. When I say “various” I mean we alternate about 3 books. We have huge books full of Thomas stories and he only wants the same three so we can’t even read new Thomas. I hear this is a common problem for parents and I feel like starting a support group sometimes because if I hear Thomas and The Big Big Bridge one more time, I’m going to jump off the big big bridge and call it a day.
He got us pretty bad last night.
Alister: Dad, do we have new Spiderman?
(YES!! We love Spiderman!)
Aaron: Yeah, we have new Spiderman right here.
Alister: Ok, I want old Thomas.
What a jerk.
I picked Alister up from preschool this afternoon. All of the children were lined up so the teachers could do a head count. How did I know which one was mine? He was the one going down the line and making sure to hug each of his classmates goodbye. They did not seem comfortable with this but he persevered. He also told one of the teachers that he loved her. What a suck up.
We live in a naked house. Not in a creepy way but we are pretty open about our bodies and the general idea of nudity. We don’t want to make Alister feel weird about his body or feel weird about seeing other people naked. (this is me, attempting to not completely screw him up because I’d rather him pay for us to have a nice old folks home rather than years of therapy to undo whatever damage I might do in the coming years).
I only grew up seeing girls naked because I didn’t have brothers. I did not grow up in a naked house. Alister has seen me naked practically everyday of his life. He only started wanting to bathe on his own in the last year.
One day, I was getting out of the shower and he looked at me and asked, “mom, are you broken?” I was a bit confused at first and then I noticed WHAT he was looking at. Ah, he noticed that mommy does not have a penis.
I tried to explain that mommies don’t have penises (at the time, we called them “weiners”, not because we feel weird about calling our body parts by their proper names but because some words just sound funny. Weiner is one of them.
We spent some time that morning with him telling Aaron and me that mommy doesn’t have a weiner but we still went for about a month of him asking me if I was broken.
He recently started learning the proper names for our “bits” as he was calling them. Anatomy according to Alister is that, “boys have bits or weiners, called penises.” and that “girls have bits or baginas.” Yes, mom has a bagina now. It’s starting to get a little weird to have conversations with him about who has “baginas” and who doesn’t. I mean really, who wants to think about Grandma’s bagina? Not me.
Having a little boy is weird.