Monday, August 18, 2008

Mole Bats and Advice

My previously discussed Middle Child has only in the past 2 years or so become a rather difficult person; prior to that she was basically the human incarnation of Disney's Tigger. Bounding through life with unbridled natural exuberance, more or less oblivious to any destruction she might be leaving in her wake... wait, I think maybe she's still Tigger, just the dark version. Darth Tigger, if you will. But for the first twelve or so years of her life, she pretty much looked like this:
Man, I miss that kid! Hopefully, she'll be back in a few years.

My Oldest, though, my one and only boy child, has always been more of an Eeyore. A good guy, hilariously funny, actually, and sensitive and kind, but always a worrier. Hiding behind his hair from the moment he had a say in the matter, fretting over things in a way to which it's difficult for me to relate. (I'm more of a cockeyed optimist, I think.) This is him, with the little sister he adores, on his mom's birthday:
See what I mean?

I'm not sure how the Small One will turn out, of course, but I do know she is a girl with a purpose. Always with an agenda, that one, and pretty insistent upon it's execution. A funny thing about her lately, though- she's gotten lazy with some pronunciation. I mean, she's not quite two, so she requires a bit of translation anyway, but there are a few things she used to say VERY clearly, clearly enough for complete strangers to understand, that she's starting to slur a little, just because she knows we know what she means. The biggest example of this is the way she asks to nurse. We're still breastfeeding, but typically we prefer to nurse on the bed, because I'm not one for nursing a toddler in front of people. (Well- with a few exceptions.) When she wants milk, she does the sign for milk and says, usually very loudly, "MILK BED MOMMY, PLEASE!!!!!" But recently, she shortened this to "MILK BED PLEASE" and now she's begun to say "MILKBED!" as one word, but she's started slurring it, so it sounds more like "MOLEBAT!" than anything else.

We pretend not to understand her. We say "Molebats? Where? We don't want any molebats around here!" And then she slows down and pronounces it, but it makes her mad, I can tell. What is a molebat, anyway? I don't think I want to meet one!

But I digress, because I wanted to talk about my eldest. He has a new favorite phrase, which he tosses at me any time I attempt to make a suggestion about his life. The phrase? "ARE YOU CRAZY?!?!?" As in "Hey, maybe you should go jogging!" "ARE YOU CRAZY? It's too hot." "I think you should take Spanish over the summer." "ARE YOU CRAZY? I don't want to spend my summer doing school!" (And yes, he took the class, and made a high A, so perhaps I am not as crazy as previously suggested, eh?)

Over the weekend, we had a bit of a falling out. He signed up for football, went to one practice, wants to quit. I think that's not the best of plans, and maybe he should try to tough it out for a little while longer and see if he can do it. "ARE YOU CRAZY? If I stay in football I'll either have to quit my night job or fail my classes!" So I suggest he quit his night job (because he has a seasonal weekend job as well) and he, of course, asks if I am crazy, because if he quits his night job, then when the seasonal job ends he'll have NO job.

So I did what any self respecting mom would do. I gave one final piece of advice: "Call your father." Because really, what do I care about football? I don't even LIKE football. But his dad just put $200 into football equipment, so he may wish to have a say.

Today, Oldest Child comes in after school and says "What should I do about school and work and football?" Not being in the mood today to have my sanity questioned, I say "I don't know, Honey." He gets this really hurt look on his face and says "You always do that! You refuse to give me advice!"

I was rather stunned by this particular criticism, and looked at him askance. He said "It's TRUE! You either tell me to do whatever I want, or you tell me what I'm doing is the wrong thing, or you tell me you don't know!?!?!?"

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't that called "giving advice"?


Kat said...

I think, for many people, giving advice means telling them what they want to hear.

Love the Mole Bats story. I can hear you saying these things!

perfect just like mommy said...

I love that you tagged this entry with "molebats." Like, you're expecting future entries about molebats too.

Also, my LO is also doing that slurring words she already knows thing. I think they're just trying to make us look bad.


amy said...

Kat- I think you're right!

Lilly- With the mole bat infestation we apparently have? You just never know... ;o)