Friday, August 20, 2010

Please Don't Eat the Daisies

My mother has a story she is fond of telling about L. When we were at my parents' house for Passover in April, my mom caught L drawing on the walls. My mother said to her: "We don't color on walls, honey. You can't do that."

L responded: That's a rule here, too?

Life with this child is just filled with such moments. Not long ago we had a conversation about stickers, which wasn't so much a conversation as a noun-filled instruction given, and literally received: "Love: we do not put stickers on chairs, ok? We do not put stickers on walls or floors or dishwashers or washing machines or cabinets or wallpaper or furniture. Okay, sweet girl?"

Okay, mama!

The next day she called me into the dining room to play her favorite game of I'm Hiding!, whereby she cocoons herself in the floor-length drapes and we remark on her sudden disappearance and muse aloud on her safety and welfare and lament her absence and bemoan our breaking hearts and then exclaim with great joy and relief when suddenly!! with great joy and fairy dust and invisible trumpets blaring!! she reappears.

Do you play this game?

So she reappeared, and thank goodness! because oh, how I would miss her were she to disappear permanently, and so I showered her with kisses of joy and tickles of gratitude and proclamations of relief when she abandoned the script. Mama! I decorated the window for coming back!

"Huh?" I say, confused at the new plot twist, but she quickly clarified by way of drawing back the drapes: come look!

The entire section of reachable-by-two-year-old-arms window was covered in stickers. Is it pretty, Mama? And when I was slow to respond: You no say no stickers on windows, Mama.

Well, that was an oversight on my part, wasn't it?

That was a couple of weeks ago and we have since clarified my stance on stickers on windows. Last night we played a different imagination game, one where L was a magic princess and I was The Person Who Has to Read Books to the Princess. We played until bedtime, when we ran into a snag. I wasn't supposed to remove her ponytails because so doing would remove her crown. I promised the princess that I wouldn't disrupt the (presumed-to-be-invisble) crown but this displeased Her Royal Highness, because Book Reader Mama, pay attention, MY CROWN IS REAL!


Because I had never said we don't put stickers on our scalps.

But we've since modified our lists.

Again.
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