Quick! To The Panic Room!

A Mother's Quest for Peace and Quiet

Three’s Company

Mini-Man has a lacrosse game in the Outer Banks,” Man said in his matter-of-fact way. What he really meant was he would take Mini-Man on an overnight trip to the beach and I would stay home with the other two non-lacrosse players.

I was envious. I wanted to watch Mini-Man play lacrosse. Also, going on a trip with Mini-Man and Man means quiet. While they can speak, they both are perfectly content not to. I mean, here I was left with Mini-Me and Caveman. And there is never peace when those characters are around.

And we would be at home with nothing planned, so we would need to manufacture our own entertainment.

Of course I had nothing to fear. Mini-Me immediately came up with a plan. She usually does.

Mini-Me: “We can have Girls’ Weekend. We’ll just do girl stuff.”

Me: “But what about Caveman. What can he do?”

Mini-Me: “He can be one of us. But just for this weekend.”

I wasn’t sure how Caveman would become one of us,” but I was flattered she felt I already had the part down. Caveman would have to improvise.

Mini-Me broke out dance music and an old mic with no chord. Her bed became the stage on which we sang and danced hip-hop routines. We took turns performing while one of “us” flicked the lights creating a strobe effect. When a slat on the bed broke, I didn’t scold. We three just moved on to the next activity.

Mini-Me: “Let’s not eat real dinner and just have popcorn and brownies. We can watch Beverly Hills Chihuahua. Mini-Man NEVER let’s me watch that movie.”

So we did.

Caveman really enjoyed being one of the girls. He liked dancing and flashing the lights. And he’d sit through the PBS News Hour if it meant eating popcorn and brownies.

In our threesome, Caveman was the clownish male character, Mini-Me was the zany blonde, while I was the uninteresting brunette. But that was fine. I, like any lackluster sidekick, enjoyed abandoning my responsible demeanor  to get mixed-up in their crazy antics. And in the end, like in any good sit-com, we uncovered a truth that we hadn’t realized before.

When it was time for bed, Mini-Me made a keen observation…

Mini-Me:Caveman is fun.”

This is an unusual comment since Mini-Me is usually wailing because Caveman has destroyed the paper cup she transformed into a puppet or some other precious creation. Caveman is a pro at infuriating Mini-Me and then skittering gleefully away.

Caveman wants to include everyone,” she continued. ” He doesn’t care who you are.”

And it’s true. Caveman’s ability to bring everyone into his everyday adventures is remarkable.

We might all be in the backyard and Caveman will discover some slugs. He’ll poke them, hold them and then grab some leaves to cover them. And then, to anyone who comes near

he’ll say, “You try?”

You  can’t say no to his sparkling smile and sincere invitation, so you take the slug he has thrust into your hand.

“You try” is Caveman’s pat phrase. He says this when eating a cookie, throwing a ball into the neighbor’s flowers, or getting off the potty. He just wants someone, anyone, to experience his everyday pleasures.

And that’s the ticket, isn’t it? The three of us didn’t go on the cool trip. We didn’t see the lacrosse game or the beach. We never even left the house.  It was just we three. And that was company enough.


May 20, 2010 Posted by | family | 5 Comments

So, I’m Now Officially Fred Flintstone

I forgot my anniversary. It’s today. My husband knows I forgot. (Big sigh).

Here’s how I found out…

Man: (smiling) “So, tomorrow’s a big day.”

Me: (frowning) “Yeah, I can’t believe you have an early-morning meeting. You have GOT to plan better. Now I have to get all three kids to school and I said I’d bring Caveman in early so the teacher could help get him into school.” (Caveman becomes absolutely primal when he has to go to school. Thrashing, biting, pulling hair-it’s ugly.)

Man: “What else is going on tomorrow.”

Me: “I don’t know. I need to get Mini-Man a haircut. He is starting to look like those scary guys who sit outside RiteAid. And, I think I have to conference with his teacher. Why? What else is up?”

And then it dawned on Me.

Me: “I can’t believe I forgot our anniversary. I’m sorry. I’m just preoccupied. We should NEVER have gotten married in January. (Of course it was Me who insisted on the month and day). It’s too hard to remember with so much going on.”

Man: “It’s okay.”

Now Man and Me do not usually do full-on celebrations of anniversaries. Cards are exchanged. We go to dinner. No gifts.

But of course, this year HAD to be the year Man went all out.

During the bedtime routine, Man tucked an envelope under Me’s pillow.

Me: “Aaww, how cute. Should I wait til tomorrow? No, forget that. I want to see it now.”

Inside the envelope was a sweet card. Not like the usual ones Man gives that are funny but full of innuendo. And the message Man wrote inside went way beyond the standard,” I love you and I’m glad you still put up with me.”

Me: (reading aloud) ” Pack your bags for an overnight trip with target departure on Friday at 4pm.”

Now most wives would be brought to tears because of this considerate gesture. Me was brought to tears, but for different reasons.

Me: “I can’t believe you did this. Now I feel horrible. I forgot our anniversary. I am the worst. I am sooo lame.”

After much reassurance that Man is okay with being forgotten, I fell asleep… Only to be awakened a few hours later by Mini-Me who had awoken from one of her bad dreams.

I don’t even ask Mini-Me about her dreams anymore. The last one she described involved characters from iCarly and was extremely complicated.

I now just put Mini-Me back to bed and hope someday The Family will all get some sleep.

And maybe I’ll even start remembering the important events in my life. Don’t count on it, but I’ll keep you posted…

January 13, 2010 Posted by | family, kids, marriage, parenting, parenting exceptional children | , , , , | 2 Comments


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