The Apple and the Tree
What? You don’t believe me? Need a few examples? I once pushed a little boy down a flight of stairs, poured a bowl of chili over the head of another little boy, painted a weather map on my entire bedroom wall, and fed my Dad’s baby turkeys to our German Shepherd… not all on the same day of course – but all before I was eight years old.
Even as a toddler, my folks said I was always getting into trouble, climbing on furniture, drinking toilet bowl cleaner (before the days of child-proof caps) and even running off when I found the chance. As a two year old, I once hid under a neighbor’s house for a while – leaving my parents frantic. For the record, they weren't neglectful parents, and they weren't leaving me unattended. I was sneaky (and fast). They often said all it took was one moment and I'd be gone, or knee deep in my next adventure.
Years passed and I mellowed (thankfully) into a fairly normal teenager and adult. But I still remember a few times during my childhood when my dear Mother would look me in the eye and say, “Someday I hope you have ten children, and I hope they are all just as ornery as you!” She has many times since, assured me that though I was a challenge, I was also a lot of fun and that she wouldn’t trade those years for anything.
But maybe its because she’s had 30 years or so to rest? Or maybe her memories of my early years were numbed by those of my baby brother – who was the perfect and obedient child that mothers everywhere wish they had?
I’m not sure.
Either way, I was reminded of that “ten children as ornery as you” comment yesterday, when the babysitter told me that Little Guy had tried to run down another child at daycare with his tricycle, laughing while the other boy screamed in terror.
For that, he lost all of his trains for the rest of the day (big time punishment for this particular tiny fellow). We don't take this behavior lightly, and hope he never does anything like it again. But who knows? I may not have ten children, but the one I do have so far - seems to be just as ornery as I was. The apple truly doesn't seem to have fallen far from the tree (from this tree anyway). Hubby’s parents have both assured me that he (like my brother) was pretty much a perfect child. We had hoped that maybe Little Guy’s temperment might fall somewhere in the middle of “challenging” and “perfectly behaved”. We’re hoping the same for the New Baby. But even if both of our little sweeties turn out to be chips off this particular old block… I’ll still always count them as the most precious blessings in my life!!
Now that I think about it more…my Mom had it right after all. Though sometimes challenging, Being Little Guy’s Mommy is a load of fun (even when we have bad days like yesterday) and I sure wouldn’t trade these amazing years for anything in the world!
The grey hairs? Now, those, I’d trade…. Any takers?