Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Toddler Time Epiphany

Oh, peeps, it's another epiphany;  I'm learning new things everyday.  Today, a mini-lightning bolt hit me.  See, I tell myself that I love kids (it's basically true-ish)...but the days of infants, toddlers, booster seats, diaper wipes, disposable diapers and the multitude of body fluids a parent carries about on their skin and clothing - I don't really miss that anymore.

Like observing animals in the wild, you have to stand back and take in the entire habitat to appreciate the full spectrum of the mom-of-toddler experience.

Visiting a friend with young children of her own, while she was also babysitting a sick friend's toddlers, made me see the light.  To start with, I'd forgotten the noise.  The volume erased all memory of toddler names, so I must slide into a default mode of just assigning gender, generalized growth and developmental stages and numbers, where necessary, for the purpose of clarity.

Ever the gracious host, my friend juggled a hungry and unhappy male toddler unit 1.  He had just been bopped in his noggin by another unhappy male toddler unit 2.  While her hands changed a diaper (label that diaper full of #1 and #2), her mouth corrected the aggressive bruiser male toddler unit 2 as he wailed at the punishment - no Mario Cart.  He had no reason to live, at that point, so the crying continued till it started to remind me of donkey braying, only wetter.

In an effort to help, I tried to coax the toddler units to sit with me, tell me what their toy's name was - all the standard middle aged ploys for interaction.  Not. Happening. Ever.

My friend commented,  "This will probably be in your blog."   Naw...I'd never do that.  Oh, yeah...what was I thinking?  It will.  All the crying made me forget who I was for a minute.

Meanwhile, back on the couch with Cherdo, one of the female toddler units (I think she was evil female unit 1) smiled sweetly and then hit me in the head with a cell phone, immediately dashing around the corner.  Soon, a tiny demonic arm slithered around the couch and snatched the projectile phone. I made eye contact. Slowly, I shook my head from side to side to indicate it was not a good idea to fling that cell phone my way. Correct that - I only got one "side" in before she threw it again.   She ran out of the room again and I heard distinct digging in the toy box.

Within minutes, female toddler unit 1 returned with the most annoyingly loud laser gun I have ever heard.  You know, the kind I buy my granddaughter to get back at my son, Juggernaut, for a prolonged high volume guitar amp phase he went through as a teen.  Reality check:  I could barely hear the laser gun over the other kid noise, anyway.

Cutie patootie male toddler 3 picked up a piece of pineapple.  He was sweet.  I praised him when he ate his fruit;  that sent him in a spiral of pineapple eating praise-gluttony.   If that kid got home without a lap full of regurgitated yellow triangles, I'll send my nursing license back.  He put three cups of fruit in a stomach that held about a quarter of a cup.  I know that math.

The rest of my explanation could be ditto marks with different numerical assignments and children.  

Throughout the activities, we tried to carry on a conversation.  I remember several nouns and a verb that I may try to string together forensically once my headache goes away.

That was when the epiphany really kicked in.  Clearly, I am overlooking one of the biggest advantages to being a flipster:  I don't have to do that whole baby rearin' thing anymore.  While early forty-somethings lament the last child at home and wistfully tear up at each newborn they see, I'm smiling at the fact that my youngest is 16 - and I had him late in life.  My oldest two boys are solidly adults.  Even my grandchild is in middle school.

These younger women are going through a phase I dub Uterus-Still-New-to-Us.  They are bringing forth life.  Crying, screaming, eating, weeping, plastic pants and elastic clothed life.  It all looks normal to them;  child rearing is what they live and breath.  God bless 'em.  

I, on the other hand, was absolutely thrilled to allow my favorite gynecological surgeon to cut that biological reproductive mess from my worn out self.  Bye, bye uterus.  It's purpose fulfilled, it became like the garage of a person with no car.  I wish someone had thought of it years ago.  And "life without Utie" (my uterus' nickname) suits me just fine.

Coming home after my visit, I discovered that everything looks different.  Better.  My house is so quiet.  My husband is twice as handsome.  My dog is so well behaved.  The television is at a normal noise level and my sixteen year old talks softly as I write that surgeon a heartfelt thank you note and tuck in a cheery origami uterus/fallopian tube craft.   Everything is back to normal.  Ahhhh....

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Thanks for your personal yada, yada, yada,
Love, Cherdo