Boychild is a sensitive little guy. Sometimes it's easy to forget this fact when you watch him racing around in the backyard with his buddies, fighting evil, cavorting on the swing set, pretending to be a meat-eating dinosaur, and so on.
The other day I was being a Perfect Parent (TM) as usual - you know, doing something Very Important on the computer while Girlchild napped and Boychild watched a TV show downstairs. Way to interact there, Mom. Anyway, Boychild has learned how to manipulate the remote and change the channels, and we have a number of appropriate kids' stations programmed in just for him, but he can't quite read yet so he doesn't always find something he likes without help.
I'm sitting in my [ahem] spacious office, when he creeps up the stairs, tears welling in those chocolate-brown eyes of his. "What is it, Boychild?" I ask, alarmed.
"I saw something scary on the TV," he said, starting to cry.
Near as I can figure, he landed on the show "Little Miracles," where they just happened to be doing open-heart surgery on a baby. Yeesh. I can't even watch that show because it makes me so thankful that I could cry all afternoon, and crying all afternoon can be somewhat unproductive.
So, we chatted about how surgery isn't always a "bad" thing, that doctors put you to sleep so it doesn't hurt and then they fix whatever is wrong. I even said that Grampy had a heart operation many years ago and he's all better and our friend Bella had a heart operation a few days after she was born and she is all better....
At this point, though, I'm talking to the hand. "Mom! I don't want to talk about this!" he said. Then, a few moments later, eyes filling up again, "When will I stop thinking about it?"
Okay. Note to self: avoid "Little Miracles." Listen for screaming in the night. Check.
Then, today. It's freezing in the morning - heavy frost covers the garden like lace. The spontaneous tomato plant that grew beside the sandbox thanks to some spilled compost in September is limp. There will be no tomatoes in October.
I forgot the cardinal rule of introducing change to toddlers: do so at your own risk. No, no - that's not it. Introduce in advance before actually implementing.
In this case, the change involved giving Girlchild a warmer coat to wear this morning. What a terrible, terrible thing to do! An unholy tantrum ensued after she had the jacket on for a whole 22 seconds. Despite all assurances that is was "lovely and warm and cosy," she did NOT appreciate it. You'd think I had dressed her in porcupine quills - barbs in, of course.
Fortunately for everyone in the west end of town, the tortuous screaming stopped as we started down the driveway to walk Boychild to school. Maybe it was the lacy frost that distracted her or the realization that the almost-biting cold was not eating through her red coat. Who knows what toddlers think about. Sigh. Kids are weird.
Note to self: promote the change WAY in advance to avoid early morning screaming. Hers and mine, that is.