Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Kid-Dar

Sometimes we play hide-and-go-seek.

This game works best when I hide, because Cael can't seem to grasp the rules.  It's not that he doesn't get it; he understands how the game is played but finds the hiding part to be quite tedious.  He will position himself behind a clear glass door, thinking he's invisible, and although the dried saliva and fingerprints do disguise him slightly, we all know he's there.  As soon the other player begins to search, he jumps out from his less-than-effective hiding spot.

"Come find me here!"

For this reason, the game most often results in Cael searching while I crouch behind the sofa like Graham processing a poop.  But lately I've been playing by different rules and hiding behind locked doors.  And the boys don't know it's a game.

When you have a child, everyone feels the need to inform you of how difficult parenting can be.  The late nights, the disappearing social life-- all are sacrifices that accompany this tiny human who has entered your world and your family.  And don't get me wrong, it's totally worth it.  But I also want to pee in peace.

So here's what should really happen.  After that last push, the one that makes you swear you just delivered your spleen out of your hoo-hah, someone should be there with a clipboard and thick black glasses saying, "Now that you're a mother, here are the things you can no longer do."  This statement would be followed by any activity that involves travel, explosives, spontaneity, requires quiet, privacy or intimacy.  This person would go on to say, "Here are the things you can no longer have.  Crystal goblets, pick axes, designer shoes or bags, electronics worth more than $100 and any chemicals that would actually be effective in cleaning."

Oh, and here's one more tip.  If you have any hemorrhoid cream or other embarrassing items, rest assured that your child will locate or already has located said items and will bring them out to serve as icebreakers at your next formal function.  You might be better served to stash your pick-axe in your underwear drawer and your "Preparation H" in the garage.

So why are kids so good at homing in on the things they are supposed to avoid or activities that are off-limits?  Because of the Kid-Dar.  

The Kid-Dar is a built in radar-like function that was integrated into your child's brain before he or she was old enough to draw on the walls with your red Clinique lipstick.  Instead of electromagnetic waves, your child will pick up your signals with expert precision.  He will notice how you quickly slipped out of the room to use the restroom in peace.  She will be aware of the fact that you placed your antique music box on the top shelf.  Or in my case, both of your sons will take note of the fact that you were unable to make a child-proof cover fit on the basement storage room.

Your older son will sneak in and locate the bin with his GeoTrax train set and hide it in a much more discreet location than behind the glass door.  Upon finding that the door was unlocked, your younger son will slip inside and shred 5 or 6 rolls of holiday wrapping paper.  If that isn't sufficiently irritating, your sons will activite their Kid-Dar again to find your cell phone and take a series of blurry and poorly centered photos of themselves.

Seriously, boys.  If you're going to do something, do it right.

Lastly, and in a Houdini-like display of elusiveness, your children will be sitting quietly and stoically when you return from the locked bathroom and your 3 minutes of privacy.  But don't worry, you won't find out what they've done until they're long in bed.  You couldn't see it because your Mom-Dar is missing.

You traded it in along with your crystal goblets.

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Leave your own "ism". Cael and Graham double-dog dare you.