Tonight it is perfectly acceptable to sit in the corner of a bedroom to creepily stare at your sleeping child, but only if he/she:
• is a baby.
• is sick.
• told you “I love you” for the first time today.
• was the last kid to be picked up from school today.
• told you “I hate you” for the first time today.
• was bullied by another kid without realizing it, right in front of you.
• listened sadly while you yelled at him/her a little more than you probably needed to.
• was bullied by another kid, and suddenly realized it for the first time.
• watched a scary movie without your permission.
• is back home for the first time since leaving for college.
• lives in the same scary world that you’ve been reading about in the day’s news.
• pointed out something beautiful in your day-to-day surroundings today, that you yourself hadn’t noticed since you were that same age.
• When the older kid poops in his pants and is looking for a responsible party to clean him up
• When your wife has just discovered your undisclosed purchase of [non-essential $500+ vintage limited-release collectable], and is coming this way right now!
• When he sits down on your face
• When he wakes up from a nap to tell you that he wants to join Mensa, right before you wake up from your nap and find him chewing on a remote
• When he crawls towards that incredibly creepy other dad with a full set of hair, six-pack abs, and a fully ironed stain-free dress shirt
The true joy of a smile isn’t in the smile itself, but in the transition to that smile from a neutral state.
That’s why my son’s requests for cookies are always met with a firm “No”, followed by “OK OK stop whining!”
Just wanted to mention how much I’ve appreciate all of the invaluable social and problem-solving lessons that Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood has brought into our modest household. Lessons like (cue music):
1. When your kid won’t stop yelling, then let’s watch Daniel Tiger!
2. When your kid won’t eat veggies, then let’s stop watching Daniel Tiger!
3. When your kid says he loves you, then let’s watch Daniel Tiger!
4. When your kid says he hates you, then let’s stop watching Daniel Tiger!
5. When your kid wakes you up at 6:00 AM, then let’s make believe we’re still asleep!