Kids Just Don’t Understand
If D1 were Twitter, she’d report me for spam, which isn’t so bad because I’m sure as she gets older, she’ll become like gmail and everything I say will automatically end up in her spam folder. But lately, I’ve come to realize I’m part of the problem. She’s only 2.5 and she already doesn’t understand the things I say, mostly because I mumble and ramble of my propensity to use clichés and figures of speech.
A few Sundays ago I had a moment of immense anger with D1. We just returned from a retreat with other couples from our church. My wife came down with mastitis so she stayed home with D2 while I took D1 to church. I was quite proud of myself. I got D1 changed, brought some bottles of water and other things my wife would need and put them on her nightstand within reach, packed snacks for D1, packed the diaper bag, and was ready to head out the door. Just then, D1 asked for some milk, so I obliged. She took one sip and put the cup down on the floor. Then things seemed to move in slow motion.
She saw something interesting in the living room and as she got up to go look at it, she knocked over the cup of milk. Remember, she only took a sip so milk was everywhere. Under the baseboards, onto some shoes, under the trash can, etc…I was so infuriated. I absolutely lost it. Wasn’t I incredibly proud of myself just a minute ago? I began to yell at D1 – I haven’t yelled at her that badly since shortly after D2 was born.
At one point, I shouted in Korean, “WHAT IS THIS?!?!?!” D1 tearfully cried back, “It’s milk, daddy!” I had to bite my lip in order to keep from laughing.
I try really hard not to curse, but life, and especially life as a parent, requires interjections. So I usually use euphemisms like poop, dang it, curses, etc…I also like to say, “Oh my goodness” a la Shanaynay from Martin
So D1 is thisclose to being potty trained. The only times we put a diaper on her are for naps and when we go to a public place where a (usable) restroom may not be readily available. Lately, D1’s been in the habit of taking off her poopy diaper, leaving it in place, and heading to the toilet to wipe her butt. Hey Pampers – get on that idea DC Urban Dad sent you a while back!
Last week, I put D1 down for a nap. Later, I hear her get up and go to the bathroom. I head upstairs and find her putting the Baby Bjorn toilet trainer on the toilet seat and moving the step stool over to get up there. She says, “Appa! I’m going pee pee!” to which I reply, “I’m so proud of you.” 30 seconds pass and I don’t hear any pee. My wife calls me over so I tell D1 that I’ll be back. I come back to the bathroom in less than a minute and D1 is now off the potty but there is a little turd on the toilet trainer. “Oh wow,” I exclaimed, “D1 you went poo poo?!” So I pick her up to wipe her butt and then HORROR.
It looked like there was a poop explosion on her butt. I frantically look in the toilet. NO POOP! No poop in the toilet, an explosion on her butt, and a turd on the seat. At this point I’m confused as to what happened. “Honey, can you go get me some wipes from D1’s room,” I shout. She heads over and exclaims, “Oh my God. That’s all you!” I’m pretty sure she tagged me like a tag-team partner does in wrestling as she passed me. I go in and there’s D1’s old diaper, filled with a nasty turd, and poop all over her blanket and pillows.
“OH LORD! D1!!! OH LORD! OH MY GOD! D1!!! OH LORD!!!” I exclaim over and over. And without missing a beat, D1 shouts, “PRAISE THE LORD, APPA!” She laughs and keeps on saying it, “PRAISE THE LORD! PRAISE THE LORD!” Once again, I had to bite my lip in order to keep from laughing.
At the End of the Day
That seems to be a popular cliché, along with “the bottom line is…” It’s one that I like to use also. I once used it on D1. “At the end of the day, D1, blah blah blah [something philosophical that a 2.5yo could definitely use].”
Fast forward to bedtime. We’re laying in bed, talking about her day and she goes, “Appa. It’s the end of the day, [repeats back something philosophical].”
It Doesn’t Get Any Better
I’d like to think that I’ll be able to communicate better with my kids as they get older but an incident that happened with my wife and some of her students reminds me that there are some things that kids just don’t understand – or don’t want to understand.
My wife is in the habit of putting motivational posters and quotes throughout her classroom. One that she put up recently is a Chinese proverb:
Tell me and I’ll forget; show me and I may remember; involve me and I’ll understand.
From a distance, my wife noticed some kids gathered around the new posting and were shaking their heads as if a light bulb was going off. In that moment, my wife was one proud teacher and she began to approach them to talk about it.
Then one kid turns to another and says, “I want to understand your mom.”
It’s nice to know that after all these years, your mom is still popular with high school boys. BOOM!
What are some other things adults use in everyday life that kids just don’t understand?
So I grossed the Organic Enchilada out with my Martin video above, so I thought I’d redeem myself with this classic moment from that show. I love me some Tracy Morgan.