The entire board of pediatrics, straight across, displayed the THUMBS DOWN signal. They also frowned while they did this. And then they wanted to know WHO IS THE SUPERVISING ADULT ON DUTY? LET US BRING THE CHARGES AGAINST HER!
The orthopedic surgeons, smelling a brand new beach house with an open floor plan and an infinity pool overlooking the bay, turned their thumbs toward the heavens… and then they applauded, because it looks like family vacations might just get a little fancier for them.
While Hubs was at work… while the boy was on the other side of the state, playing in a golf tournament… while I had the hair dryer running and the hot rollers heating, in an effort to look a little less like I live beneath a bridge…
… Thing 2 employed his engineering skills and built the Leaning Tower of Pisa, when he was supposed to be watching the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles keep the sewers safe on the iPad.
(Don’t judge. Apparently our cartoon choices are every bit as lovely as our unsupervised acrobatic skills.)
(It’s like we live in a van… down by the river.)
When I’d wrapped the cord around my hair dryer (exactly like the manufacturer warns you NOT to do) and put it back in the bathroom drawer, I wandered out into the kitchen, because the Ninja Turtles had no audience. They were busy protecting the sewers, and no one was watching them pull it off.
It’s because that Audience of One was very busy climbing and announcing, “Hey! Hey, Ma? Did you know there’s chocolate AND bubble gum in this cupboard?!!”
I won’t beat around the bush. I sort of clutched my hand over my heart and screeched out warnings to DO NOT MOVE! DO NOT MOVE!! Because isn’t that what you’re supposed to do for every person teetering on the edge of a cliff or a tall building? Screech at them, which sends them into a state of horrible startlement, causing them to teeter precariously, right before they fall?
I failed to employ the rescue method of APPROACH THE VICTIM SLOWLY… SPEAK SLOWLY… AND VERY GENTLY STRETCH OUT YOUR HAND TO GRASP THEIRS, SO THAT THEY CAN BE RETURNED TO SAFE GROUND QUICKLY.
… I left my preschool son, JUST AS HE WAS, for another 3 seconds, while I yanked out my iPhone and frantically took a picture, because LISTEN, HUBS! THIS IS WHY THE FLOORS NEVER GET VACUUMED AROUND HERE! I’M TOO BUSY SAVING LIVES ALL DAY TO WORRY ABOUT THE HARDWOODS!
And then… THEN!!!… I rescued my son, who really didn’t need rescuing, because he had his balancing act completely under control and was at the top of his varsity game. He made the mountain goats look incompetent with what he was successfully pulling off.
“I got this, Ma.”
(*insert goat noise here*)
When his feet were safely on the floor (The dirty floor… the floor that never gets swept or vacuumed, because Wonder Woman is too busy saving civilians with her golden lasso.), I immediately launched into my homeschool lesson on physics.
Specifically, we talked about gravity, and how it tends to pull you quickly toward the earth, and then we talked about wobbly structures that are engineered by young monkeys with degrees obtained for six box tops off of the backs of cereal boxes, and how such structures tend to collapse under the weight of… say… a forty-two-pound child who has just found the equivalent of the Holy Grail, because of the value he places on Lindor Milk Chocolate Truffles and sugar-free Bubble Yum. I explained things like broken heads and blood loss and IV insertions. We talked about insurance deductibles, Mama’s weak heart, panic attacks in adults, and how some engineers lack common sense, as they continue to build higher and higher, without rebar.
We took the bar stool off the chair; we pushed them both back to where they belong.
And then Mama called some friends to ask, “At what hour of the day can you drink wine, before anyone judges you? I’m asking for a friend.”