There are things you say on a daily basis, phrases that come
out of your mouth now that you have kids that would probably never have passed
your lips before you became a parent. You are in a different place in life, in a different world, and you say
weird stuff — stuff that sounds totally
normal to you, but taken out of the parenting context, is really not. Here are 10 things I really said today that
illustrate my point.
Somewhere down the road after you become a parent, you start
referring to your child's favorite cartoon as a unit of time. In our house, we keep time in Peppa Pig
units. My almost 2-year-old is crazy
about that pink, British doodle of a pig. Sure, she has no idea yet about the running time of each episode, to her
it could be a minute or an hour. But,
the simple fact that we are referring to Peppa Pig is enough. And hearing that we'd be there in "One Peppa
Pig" helped my daughter calm her wailing and wild flailing to escape her
cars eat down to a soft, bearable whimper for the duration of the ride home in
rush hour traffic. I'm starting to adapt
this time-keeping method with my 12-year-old son and my husband (e.g. If you don't get over here in 1 Vine
video, you're grounded. Or when I tell
my husband that he doesn't need to spend a whole "Dances With Wolves" in the
2. "Hold on, you have a gummy shark on your butt."
Gummies are everywhere: on the floor, in the closet, stuck to my pen in my purse, half-eaten in
my child's hair. At least once a week, either my husband or I go through a
third of the day with a gummy strawberry, gummy Nemo or gummy Scooby Snack
stuck to our butt. Sometimes we tell one
another, sometimes we don't. Today I
chose to tell him.
3. "Wait a minute, babe. I can't do this with Dora watching."
My daughter has a Dora doll. It's a really weird one, actually. It's "Slumber Party Dora" or something like that, and she has her hair
in pigtails and is wearing a blue, not-cute mumu. It's one that I bought in a moment of
weakness and desperation during a meltdown at the grocery store. And of course, my daughter loves it and totes
it around all over the house. She
left it on our bed last night so that when my husband woke up this morning
feeling frisky and then got me in the mood, Dora and her dumb mumu were there
to un-sexify the moment. Hola! I'm no
4. "Are you sure that's chocolate on your elbow?"
Everything, everywhere could be either chocolate or poop.
This kind of question is a staple of conversation in a
household with kids. Everything,
everywhere could be either chocolate or poop.
You want to say Fu**, but your toddler daughter and 12-year-old son are standing right there observing how you react to stepping on that
(effing) Lego. It's so hard when you're a parent, and you want to blurt out an
expletive because the occasion SOOO warrants it, but you have to keep it
cutesie and under control because you know your child will adopt the word into
her vocabulary, but also learn your flash anger behavior. I said "OOPSIE!" so many times today, but in
my heart I was saying "*&^$!".
6. "Get your toothbrush out of your diaper!"
Why do kids like sticking things down their diapers? Why do they always insist on grabbing their
butts when you're changing a poopy diaper? Why? I use this phrase at least once a week, changing out "toothbrush"
with anything from "spoon" to "yogurt" to "the remote control."
7. "Are those poop nuggets in my closet?"
Yes. Yes they
were. They were three little poop nuggets on
the floor of my closet.
8. "I promise, there are no mean koalas waiting in
My daughter seems to think that there are bears of all
species living amongst us, hanging out everywhere we go. Yesterday there were "scawy" brown bears on
the side of the freeway eating fish. Today there was a family of mean koalas sitting in our car waiting for
us. I had to open every door and do a
thorough and visible sweep of the car and then show her how I came out
unscathed and unharmed by any koalas before she finally allowed me to strap her
in the car seat. Wow.
9. "If you
eat one more bite, I'll do the 'Hot Dog Dance.'"
This is not so much a brag as it is a cry for help.
You only know what this is because you have a young
kid. And kids, boy, do they love their "Mickey Mouse Clubhouse." But they
especially love that catchy, yet grating hot dog song and dance that ends
each Clubhouse episode. I have learned
and practiced each character's rendition of this hot dog dance, and can perform
any one of them on my daughter's request. This is not so much a brag as it is a cry for help. In any case, it took me performing the
Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Donald and
Daisy versions for my daughter to finish her chicken and rice tonight.