[su_heading]Conversations with Toddlers[/su_heading]
I have been missing my children even though I see them every day. They want me to make money but do not like it when I am holed up in my office writing. They want their mommy back and I need them as well. I have watched them become needy, sullen and more mischievous because they are not getting my full attention. Axel is slowly turning inward and living more and more in his own dream world and Thumper follows me around the house talking to me as I do my chores.
Yesterday, I put everything down and focused on my little Hootie-Hoo. We sat at the breakfast table with the sun pouring in and watched all the beautiful birds outside. This conversation ensued:
Hootie-Hoo: “Mommy, who lives in the treehouses? I mean bbbird houses? Are the bluebirds still there?”
Mommy: “No, the swallows have moved in”
Hootie-Hoo (wide eyed & teary): “They swallowed the blue birds?”
Mommy: “No, the birds that moved in are called swallows.”
Hootie-Hoo: “So…I’m going to look in the bird house and the birds are going to hit me in the face!”
Mommy: “How are they going to hit you?”
Hootie-Hoo (with arms out like airplane wings): “With their wings and than I’m going to fly in the sky with them.”
Mommy: “Do you know that you are my little Owl?”
Hootie-Hoo: “No I’m not, I’m Tucker. Owls have dirty feet.”
We went up to Aspen and played soccer in a field. How nice it was to have the sun on our faces as we wrestled each other to get the ball. Every few minutes I would tackle him to the ground and play Thumper’s favorite game with him where I ask, “What Day is it Today?” Knowing that he will get a raspberry on his belly he names a fruit. Whichever fruit he says determines where the raspberry will be applied. When he replies, “No day” than the game is over.
Somebody mentioned to Hootie-Hoo that people die when they reach 100 years old. We had to tenderly answer all of his questions as his eyes filled with tears. This has led to at least one question a day about death. I see him thinking with his head cocked to one side and then he will say something like, “When we die the sand will still be at the beach.”
I am very straightforward with my children and try to go into depth about any topic that they are interested in. We are their teachers after all and the deeper I can explain things the more they will understand life. The topic of death always stumps me. How does one tell a four year old that life does not go on forever and that we all die at some point? The other difficult topic is marriage. When Axel first learned that children leave their parents for college and than get married and live with their own family he cried and cried for days and told me that he wanted to marry me so that he would never have to leave me.
Hootie-Hoo rarely gets to watch TV but is somehow obsessed with Teletubbies. At any given moment he will start the Teletubby laugh and his brothers will join in. Inevitably, the laughter will escalate into unstoppable giggles. While skiing the other day Tucker spotted Tinky Winky on skis and he was elated. When we got down from skiing we sat on a bench next to a teenager with green hair.Hootie-Hoo excitedly asked if he was a Teletubby, thankfully he didn’t ask if he was Tinky Winky. Thumper and Axel loved that even though they were thoroughly mortified.
They all get confused by time never really knowing what day it is.Hootie-Hoo asks, “When is it going to be tomorrow? I know, after all the other days it will be tomorrow.” He also gets confused with age and size, “When I was big I’m going to be smaller.” Half the time none of us know what he is talking about although his brothers are usually more clued in then his parents.
He is growing up but he still gets his words confused. He woke up the other morning and asked if we were going to “Fantosco” (Costco) or he tells me to be careful because his art piece is “Very Fragical.” He has just learned about rhyming and excitedly states that “O rhymes with no and X-Games rhymes with the F-word” (we were all stumped by that one). We are just waiting for him to say, “Tucker rhymes with……”
We all think that he is going to be our little comedian but currently we are not allowed to laugh when he is funny or he will cross his arms angrily, stick his tongue out and become very naughty. When he was eating a strawberry he said, “Look it has a butt crack.”
My friend Stephanie has a stunning little girl named Lindsey and she and Hootie-Hoo have become the best of friends. After a play date Tucker walks around the house singing “I feel wonderful as can be.” I think she is his first crush and boy does he get silly around her. She tells her mommy that he is, oh so very chatty!
It is so difficult to try to feed one’s creative side and raise a family. I am determined to better juggle my time between my family and my writing so that everybody is happy. After all, if I don’t tune in I am missing great material. They work together and somehow I must find that balance.