Friday, July 15, 2011

Owning the Parenthood Walk of Shame!

Note to self: anything that requires taking Nixon into public while pushing his naptime back a a BAD idea. In fact, tying your own tubes at home with butter knives and tooth picks would be a better idea than taking Nixon out in an effort to push back his naptime. Calling your ex and telling him he's still sexy and all you ever think about....well c'mon now that will get you put into the looney bin, let's be honest. To say that, I'd have to be delusional!!

Get to the point, Rea.....

Since Mac is on midnights, he sleeps before going to work, and I try to get Nixon out of the house for at least an hour, giving him a bit of total silent sleep. Yesterday I decided I wanted to check mail (a good 25-30 minute round trip drive) and grab a box of bleach for my hair since I needed to get rid of the scary roots that were poking through again. Now, I did make one fatal error in judgment when leaving the house. I left without a diaper and wipes.

We checked mail, no issue other than Nixon running up and down the wheelchair ramp three times, giggling the entire time.

Off to the store we went. Nixon decided to take the stairs up to the second floor, so up we went. We grabbed the bleach for my hair and then I let Nixon wander around for a few minutes. (BAD idea...very bad idea!) I smelled something.
"Nixon, did you poop?"
Nixon: "no poop, momma" as he darts off to the toy cars aisle
We wander around that aisle just looking, Nixon never asked for a toy once, just pointed at the different cars/trucks/airplanes and trains. Finally, I realize he DID poop and I DON'T have any diapers or wipes with me so we have to go home now!

This is not going to end well.

I start gently leading him out of the toy section, without a fight. Until he realizes we're leaving and he tries to run back to the toy section! I hold his hand and we stand in one place for a few seconds while I explain we have to go home now.
Have you ever heard a banshee scream?? That high-pitched, ear bleeding tone that goes on forever?? Yeah, apparently Nixon is part Banshee because he's got that noise down pat! He throws himself on the ground and refuses to move. SO I pick him up. And continue walking to the register. There's one open, with a cashier I see frequently who's always friendly with Nixon. SCORE! I beeline for it, carrying a bucking bronco child, formerly known as Nixon, to pay for my one item, when I realize...I have to put Nixon down to dig my wallet out of my enormous purse! Thankfully, still no one else in line behind us. I smile, put Nixon on the ground and grab my id and wallet.

Of course, as I'm swiping my card and almost in the clear, Nixon tries to make a dash for it just as someone gets in line behind us. I grab his arm and lift him up popping him onto my hip without a thought. And the screaming begins again. The cashier, familiar with us, smiles kindly and says "Bad day?"
I shrug and do my best to act like I don't want to drop Nixon off in the nearest donation box, and say "Eh, who knows, he's 2". As he continues to scream and the woman in line behind me is shaking her head. I'm pretty sure my ears were bleeding as I walked away and went downstairs.

It used to be the walk of shame was the morning after a one night stand, going home in the same clothes you left in the night before. Now? As a parent? The walk of shame is leaving any public place with a screaming child and getting the dirty hairy eyeball looks from strangers who you've never seen before but you know think you are the WORST mother in the world at that very moment in time.
There are a couple ways you can deal with the Parenthood Walk of Shame.
*1- hang your head, with your face bright red and utter an apology to anyone around you for your child being a child
*2- OWN that walk of shame.

I do number 2. It makes people much more uncomfortable when they realize you are already aware of the fact you know your child is causing a scene and you are the reason for it. Here's what I did yesterday.
As we were leaving, and people were staring at my screaming child and a part of me wanted to tell Nixon to "shut the fuck up" I fell back on my humor. While holding my screaming banshee son, instead of apologizing to strangers I'd never seen before, I apologized to Nixon...for his mother being the devil and being so mean.
It sounded like this.
Me: "I know buddy. I'm sorry your mom is the devil and is making you leave without getting you a toy. And being the son of the devil means screaming is perfectly acceptable behavior. I get it, but I don't think everyone else around you, listening and staring gets it. Maybe if you scream louder they'll leave us alone."

Yeah, I got a lot of head shakes and eyerolls from people. You know what else? I got the satisfaction of knowing those self-righteous shits were listening to me speaking softly to my son, because I never raised my voice to Nixon, I spoke closely into his ear so he could hear me, over his own screaming. Someone muttered something about "nice parenting", I thanked them.

It's all about owning something. Toddlers, preschoolers, kids in general...they all have bad days. They'll thrown temper tantrums. I should've left and said "the hell with" what I was buying. But I didn't. So I had to deal with the fallout of it all. Thankfully, he's only one kid throwing one tantrum, albeit a very loud and impressive one!

On a separate note, it seems Nixon is getting ready to potty train and we'll be doing it naked and standing up.
It began with his refusal to wear a diaper or undies. Then he started standing in front of the toilet. So far in 3 days: he's spent over 4 hours naked, an hour in 2 pairs of undies, had 5 accidents, cleaned up 2 of the accidents and flushed the toilet no fewer than 15 times in 10 minutes!
His last accident last night, before bed, he came over to me "Momma I nakid!!", he had been wearing underwear prior to this moment. Then I heard "I clean it, I clean it!" I rush over to see what he's cleaning and it's a small puddle right next to the toilet! AWESOME!! No seriously, that's the closet he's been yet!. So we clean it together, he flushes the toilet "bye bye pee" and it's jammie time.

Now if only he would stop pulling on his penis! I swear he's trying to pull it OFF his body!

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