Who knew that I would say the words, “It’s not a party unless somebody pukes!” as Mommies and children left a play date that I had at my house for 7 toddlers last week.
I should have known during our pre-play date preparatory chat. I said to Nora, who is two, “You know that when your friends come over that they are going to want to play with your toys. And it will be nice to share your toys with them.”
She looked at me and said, “No.”
I should have known when the first child walked in and tentatively reached for a doll at the top of the doll tower and Nora ran over and screamed, “No, Mine!” and snatched the doll away from the poor unsuspecting child.
I should have known when her behavior continued, unrelentingly, despite some pleading on my part trying to convince her to be a normal human being, and some quality time sitting upstairs to think about things a bit. Her, mostly.
She was required to return each stolen toy, albeit begrudgingly. Trains, planes, blocks, purses, toy phones, toys she didn’t even know she had and toys that she had never once played with in her entire life. Nothing seemed to escape her notice. All of it, suddenly, precious to her. And lord help the child that even looked in the direction of the baby doll that her Grammy had brought her from the American Girl store in Chicago.
The other children began to clutch toys tighter to their chests when she came near. She came at them wild-eyed. They began to look afraid.
And then the play date was coming to an end. One of the kids had a wardrobe malfunction. There may have been some excessive spinning in the spinning chair and a subsequent strawberry and carrot muffin puke-o-rama. It could have happened. It could have happened to any of us.
So the child was in need of some clothes and, well, Nora happened to be the only person in my house who wore the same size clothes as him. And when I was rummaging through her stuff, I wasn’t actually thinking about anything other than picking out something comfortable that wasn’t a dress or rainbow-colored tights for the poor kiddo to wear.
And, unfortunately, I picked wrong. I realize this now.
I made the horrible mistake of choosing…The Monkey Sweatshirt. The Monkey Sweatshirt that she has actually never worn in her life because it was her brother’s and is still too big for her. The Monkey Sweatshirt that she often sees tucked in her drawer, and asks to wear, but I always ask her to choose a different one. The Monkey Sweatshirt that was obviously coveted in a way that I did not understand until it was much too late.
And that was when my child lost her ever-loving shit. At that point, I think it all just became too much for her ego-developing mind.
Children had come into her house and had played with her toys and had looked in the general direction of her baby that Grammy had brought her from the American Girl Store! And now there the Monkey Sweatshirt goes! The Monkey Sweatshirt that she has loved more than all of the others and The Monkey Sweatshirt for which she has been waiting patiently to be Big Enough to wear! There it goes right out the door and she had never ever gotten to wear it!
She slept then, like a person in our particular family sleeps after a storm. Or after not getting their way to a degree that induces narcolepsy. She slept for four hours. And when she woke up the first thing she said to me was “My like that monkey sweatshirt. My cry.”
“Yes, honey.” And then I changed the subject because, even then, tears were beginning to form in her eyes.
But I couldn’t help asking just one question. “Did you like having your friends over to play today, honey?”
In other news, I’m over at Scary Mommy today talking about some other days I hope they will actually remember. And those that I hope they might forget.