Saturday, September 3, 2011

Obsessions Aren't Nearly As Bad As Compulsions

I hate hearing babies or small children cry. It's a visceral response that probably means that my Mother Meter is on overload or something. I probably shouldn't analyze it too closely, since I am not Dr. Phil. Whenever, wherever, I hear kids crying, my response is immediate: I want to find the crying child and do whatever I need to do so that they stop crying. Picture me following some poor woman around Wal-mart because her toddler is screaming bloody murder, and you'll get a little idea of my compulsion.

This urge of mine is always an issue when I am at my son's daycare. There's always at least ONE crying child there in the mornings. Sometimes it's mine. I have to grit my teeth so hard that my jawbone cracks, but I walk in there, make sure that an adult knows Zane is there, and walk out as quickly as I can. It's like I am holding my breath underwater, and I can't breathe again until I am outside.

But yesterday, I did something that, in retrospect, was not a good thing.

There is this adorable little girl in Zane's class, and she is usually just as perky as only a three year old can be. As I walked in with my son clinging to my chest, this little girl was crying.

"I want my mommy!" she sobbed, looking straight at me.

I snapped. Anything to distract her from her tears!

"Your mommy has to work so she can buy you toys!" I said.

It worked. The crying stopped, and her eyes got wide. My statement also got the attention of every other three year old kid in the room. Their eyes lit up with a barest hint of that avarice that kids get around Christmas and their birthdays.

"Really?" This came from several different directions.

"Uh...yeah! Bye!" I smiled my biggest and cheesiest, kissed my boy, and got the heck out of there as fast as I could without running.

The idea that their parents might be working JUST to buy them toys probably dug deep into their brains during the day and carved out space for a futon. Small children NEVER forget anything that is going to get them either more toys or more candy. Small children do not have the time concept of anything other than NOW when it comes to toys and/or candy. Try talking to a three or four year old about Santa and his present-giving ways in June. They will immediately start looking around for Santa, asking where he is, wanting to know when he will be there, and what is taking him so long to get here with presents, etc., until you drop to the floor and play possum just to stop the questions.

Instead of running to their parents with smiles and hugs, the parents of the children in my son's daycare will be greeted with demands to see the "loot". Some kids will believe that their parents are actually paid in toys instead of money, and will search the house looking for them. There will be much wailing and crying when those children can't find any of the toys their parents have worked so very hard for. Their poor parents will be shaking their heads and wondering what the heck has gotten into their darlings, and it will be my fault.

I hope there's not a lynch mob waiting for me next time I drop Zane off.


  1. Out of the mouths of moms!
    Jessica @FoundtheMarbles

  2. Bwaaahhh! Those poor kids and parents!!! Next time do what I do if you can when you hear the screamer--run the other way--as fast as you can. I know its not possible at the daycare drop off but maybe in WalMart?!? I'm afraid someone there WOULD kill you if you let the toy thing slip!


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