I’m tired of being cooped inside by soggy cold dark weather but I suppose there’s no use in complaining: it’s January, and I live in Seattle. Get over it, self.
Still. Still! It’s madness around here sometimes. Madness, I tell you. (This is me clutching the front of your shirt, breathing little cuckoo puffs in your face.)
Dylan has entered some sort of thrilling new stage where he’s very energetic, very talkative, and very impulsive. In other words, he’s a giant pain in my ass. He’s become the sort of child I used to read stories about and chuckle indulgently: oh, come on now. No! No! I’m here to tell you these wicked children exist! I have one in my house right now, pounding the wall angrily because I’ve enforced Quiet Time, which used to be Nap Time, but is now I Don’t Give a Fuck What You Do In There As Long As I Get a Break from Your Little Face (PS: Love You!) Time.
The other day I emerged from the shower to find a series of long jagged tears in the fabric of our living room couch, stuffing poking out, each hole haphazardly covered in Scotch tape. After a flurry of denials from both children I eventually learned that Dylan had gotten his hands on a pair of adult scissors and performed the sofa appendectomies, while Riley had attempted to conceal the damage.
The next day, Dylan drew on his face with a Sharpie. The day after that, he drew on the wall.
Never mind the time I heard Riley announce he was going to the bathroom, then moments later his annoyed instruction: “Don’t touch it, Dylan.”
So we’ve got one kid who’s become impishly, adorably awful in that he cannot be trusted not to destroy entire sections of the house and wallow joyously in someone else’s private toilet affairs as soon as my back is turned, and then there’s Riley, who has returned to a stage I thought we had passed years ago, the stage of the Why, usually combined with a Hey Mom.
Hey Mom, what are you doing? Putting on my shoes. Why? Because I’m going to take out the garbage. Why? Because . . . it needs to go out. Why? Because that’s where the garbage goes? Why does garbage go? Because that’s . . . because it’s . . . because it goes in the can and then every Monday the truck comes and picks it up. Why? Because . . . because . . . uh, let’s talk about dumps.
Now, many times these spiraling conversations actually lead somewhere useful and I chalk it up to a Positive Homeschool Learning Experience of Some Kind (see also: Landfills, and Recycling!), but sometimes it reminds me exactly of that Louis CK routine:
Louis: Well, because some things are and some things are not.
Louis: Well, because things that are not can’t be.
Louis: Because then nothing wouldn’t be! You can’t have fucking nothing isn’t, everything is!
Louis: ‘Cause if nothing wasn’t, there’d be fucking all kinds of shit, like giant ants with top hats dancing around… there’s no room for all that shit!
Meanwhile Dylan does both the Why AND the Toddler Stutter AND his voice has a super high pitch AND he makes no sense half the time AND he’s obsessed with reenacting things so it’s like having a cross between Porky Pig and that Chris Colfer kid everyone loves from Glee asking me about stuff while they’re on PCP. “MOM? MOM? WHY DAT COW GOES CROSS THE RIVER ‘CAUSE HE DIN’T KNOW HOW TO SWIM LIKE DAT FERRY BOAT AND HE FELL LIKE DIS.” *demonstrates, dramatically, a falling cow* “RIGHT MOM? RIGHT?”
Riley: “Hey Mom? Why is it it 3 o’clock?”
Dylan: “I CAN RUN REAL FAR LIKE DIS, SEE?”
Riley: “Hey Mom? Why aren’t hamsters bigger than dogs?”
Dylan: “IT’S PEANUT BUTTER JELLY TIME PEANUT BUTTER JELLY TIME DERE YOU GO DERE YOU GO—”
Riley: “Hey Mom? Why are you rubbing your head?”
Dylan: “—WID A BASEBALL BAT!”
Riley: “Hey, hey, hey MOMMM?”
Yesterday around 4:30 I was pretty sure the top of my skull was going to simply detach itself from my head and float away, carried by shrieks and gobbles and midair thrown Legos, and I happened to look outside and it was light grey. Instead of pitch black, you see. O, there is hope.