“Send Help. Need Tea.”
We have been having a very undignified week. I don’t know why I even bother to strive for dignity when so many opportunities to tip the other way present themselves all the time.
I know how some of you enjoy my lists, so I made one to chronicle the indignities:
1. I fell on my behind in the kids’ bathroom when A poured bath water onto the floor. Then I picked myself up gingerly while he cackled.
2. I actually got into a verbal sparring match with him about it–“Stop laughing. It’s not funny when someone falls.” “HAHAHAHAHA.” That was pretty much how we handled it, he and I, several rounds of “admonishing-toned mom scold,” then “your butt-jarring fall followed by reproach is cracking me up HAHAHAHAHA.” For full disclosure, he won. I gave up and fell silent and he continued to laugh like a hyena for a long while.
3. A didn’t want to get out of the school vehicle yesterday, and people had to drive around us while he lay on the floor, wrapped his beanpole body around the front seat, and then got wedged under the seat, and had to be pulled out, squawking. His jacket came off in my hand, and he stayed under the seat, and the driver and attendant were hysterical with laughter by then.
4. A has some new harsh ‘rules’ about us using the washing machine, so I grew exasperated and took stuff to the laundromat. Down with tyranny, I said, while meekly scrabbling for quarters.
5. There is a really cringey home video of me doing an imitation of Rahul in “Kuch Kuch Hota Hai,” and A played it when someone came to our house. Thanks, A. Our guest is not going to let me forget that.
I could go on, but let’s go back to pretending things are under control.
These are the times when I remember the stuff I used to inflict on my own mom, and some twinges of remorse plague me. We once played that we were spies, and spent a whole day keeping watch on our very nice maid. We thought we were being so subtle, hiding under the dining table. We’re just lucky she didn’t get offended and quit.
In middle school, my husband read in a book that if you covered your arm in hair spray, then set your arm on fire, you wouldn’t get burned. So he and his friend went to my in-laws’ basement after school and tried it, and they took pictures to document their observations. When my mother-in-law got the film developed, she found out what was going on when she was at work. She laughs about it now and says, “At least it was a legal substance!”
So yeah. There is parental precedence for A’s shenanigans.
I’m so lucky to have such a sweet, naughty fellow growing up in my house. He’s turned my hair gray, and I don’t appreciate those people’s court tv shows that blare on at the laundromat as I should, but the stories of Krishna’s childhood make sense to me now. I bet you ten whole dollars that Yashoda used to take that wonderful fresh milk and make strong cups of chai to get through the day. Some of us are destined for extra demanding parenthood, and while we most often land on our butts instead of our feet, our hearts respond by simply bursting wide open to let in a huge blaze of love. What else is there. Well, besides tea.