Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Awkward Mom vs. Variety

You know, the spice of life kind and not the magazine. If Awkward Mom is gonna tussle with a magazine, it is gonna be Real Simple. Quit putting $235 shirts in your "Everyday Fashion" section, Real Simple, and then maybe I will start actually buying you, instead of borrowing Awesome Mom's copy all the time.

Watch any action movie ever, from Battleground to the Avengers, and you will see a varied group of plucky characters, with nothing in common but their need to overcome a mutual adversary. They will all have different interests and skills that are all eventually needed in order to take down the villain. In the aforementioned films, we are talking about Nazis and Aliens, the two biggest and baddest villains to ever grace the silver screen, but this theory works in any action movie not starring Chuck Norris, most ensemble films in general, this Lego cartoon the boys made me watch at Legoland, and when raising siblings.

Here is what happened yesterday; my earring kept falling out. The first time, Super Preschooler found it and tried to wear it. He wore it as a ring for a while, tired of that, and then put it over his ear lobe. He looked like a pirate afraid of commitment. The second time, Super Baby found it and tried to eat it. The third time, Super Toddler found it. I found him jamming my lovely silver hoop into the Buzz Lightyear laser gun that shoots little discs at about the speed of light (and that Awkward Dad thought was an appropriate toy for a 2 year old with no anger management skills). He got it in there, shot half of my 5th wedding anniversary gift across the room and into the garbage can, where I rescued it out of a blob of cold oatmeal. Took my earrings off for the day and debated taking the day off myself.

The Supers are all different, from how they act to how they sound to how they eat. They all have the same flyaway blond hair, tiny little noses from my side of the family, and they all smell the same come bath-time, but that is really where the similarities end. The variety in this house is massive, and sometimes I think that the only thing keeping them from killing each other is their ongoing campaign to kill my sanity. And my jewelry.

The Supers all entered the world in their own way. (Fair warning: there are a few icky details here and if birth stories make you feel queasy or just bored, feel free to skip to the next paragraph, after the shirtless baby pictures that my children are going to hate me for in about 10 years. I won't be offended and actually won't know at all!) Super Preschooler was 10 days late and had to be encouraged to enter the world with heaps of pitocin, a bevy of doctors and nurses, and an eventual and emergency C-section. My doctor used this as evidence to discourage my fantasies of a V-bac, telling me that I probably wouldn't labor on my own with the next baby. I believed him and therefore planned Super Toddler's C-section, and then went into labor with him, 3 weeks early, at the movies. I made it to the hospital, and, while Awkward Dad chased Super Preschooler in circles around the bed, the nurse inserted a catheter, and at the exact same time, asked me if I had considered a V-bac. Went ahead with the C-section, only to have a colleague of Awkward Dad's assist; we just bring the awkward with us, Readers. Super Baby came, via V-bac, on her due date, which was day 2 into Awkward Dad's planned time off. After the best epidural in history (judge if you want to, but it was amazing), I pushed for maybe 20 minutes and Super Baby entered the world with a lusty and lovely yell. Here they all are, as different as the day is long:

They are in birth order, but the personalities shining out of these pictures kinda give away who is who. Super Preschooler is sticking out his tongue, Super Toddler looks a bit stoned, and Super Baby is making her presence known, while loudly demanding another family. One a bit less awkward.

The Supers are different in a million ways. Shall I tell you? Of course I shall tell you; I am a mom, I love talking about my kids! Consider this the blog-version of me whipping out a photo book of pictures and talking your ears off about a million milestones and marvels. Also consider stopping your reading this at any time. Another wonder of the internet; graceful departures from uncomfortable or boring conversations are just a mouse-click away!

Speech: Super Preschooler's first word was cookie and then he just never stopped talking. He was telling us his own bedtime story by about 18 months. He still won't stop talking. He is talking right now. "Mommy, I want some cheese. And then, can you change the video to the other Fantasia? You know, the one with the whales? We watched the whole other one, the one with the fairies, while you were looking at Facebook. Like the whole thing, even the scary part at the end with the devils. You really like Facebook, Mommy...." He is still talking, but you don't have all day. Super Toddler announced his first word, cake, on his birthday and then didn't really say much else until his second birthday. One could argue that it is hard to get a word in with Super P. around, but I think he was just saving up so that he could hit me with these beauties: "Mommy, where my gun?" "I think Dino with gun-arms win against Robot with gun-arms because of teeth. What you think, Mommy?" and "I'll dress-up, but I bad guy!" Super Baby's first word was sock. She also says cat, Daddy, and, on occasion, Mama. Mostly she just talks to the cats in an advanced language the rest of us don't understand, complete with sweeping gestures and frequent nods. I think they are planning to take over.

Mobility: Super Preschooler walked relatively late, about 18 months. After that, he opted to dance, skip, or "poof" everywhere. Due to Super Preschooler's late walking, I thought I was ready for anything. I wasn't quite ready for Super Toddler's adamant refusal to do anything but crawl until he was 22 months old and Super Baby was 3 weeks from birth. He crawled like a little tank, rolling over anything in his path. He runs the same way. Super Baby uses a combo crawl-climb that is less tank-like and more like Spiderman scaling a wall. Or she teleports, because I never see her get onto the table and yet I continue to find her there.

Diet: I think Super Preschool lives on air and an occasional banana. The child never eats. Well, never eats anything I try to feed him. Don't ever tell him where your chocolate stash is because the boy has a sweet tooth nearly as large as his father's. Super Toddler is not encumbered with a sweet tooth because he has a salt one; chips, fries, plain salt right from the shaker. Oh, and cheese. Child would eat cheese all day long if I let him. And since I gave him that salt tooth and am so busy trying not to eat cheese all day long myself, I take responsibility for redirecting Super Toddler's cheese love. Then there is Super Baby, who eats everything else. Everything. Her food. Their food. Food that fell on the floor. The cat food, if she can get it. Random toys. The curtains. Her shirt sleeves. Books. Her brothers, if they sit still long enough. Everything. Basically, I think she is part goat.

General Interest: Oh lord, Readers, if we get into this, this little post will become a tome. Well, more of a tome. In short, Super Preschooler likes imagination games, all forms of dress-up, and storytelling. Super Toddler likes to hit things with sticks, his toy guns, or his head. And Super Baby likes to eat, watch her brothers, and laugh.

The thing is, variety really is an amazing thing. My children are stronger for their differences and you can see it in their play. I can also see it years ahead in the thousand fantasies I have during the day. The Supers at school; Super P. finding his home with the drama club, Super Toddler bruising it up on the football field, Super Baby nearly blowing up the chemistry lab with her experiments. The Supers at college: Super P.'s political phase, a shoeless Super Toddler playing hacky sack on the quad, Super Baby's goth period. The Supers start a band: Super Preschooler's earnest and flamboyant lead singer, Super Baby's totally talented and rocking lead guitarist, and Super Toddler's drums, a la Keith Moon. The Supers change the world with Super P.'s empathy, Super T.'s enthusiasm, and Super B.'s eating skills. The Supers fly into space and are exposed to cosmic rays: Super Preschooler's natural charm and flexibility becoming Mr. Fantasic, Super Toddler's easy-going nature and strength morphing into the Thing, and Super Baby's genius and tolerance altering her into the Invisible Woman. Guess we need a Johnny Storm/Human Torch for this fantasy to really take shape, but since Awkward Dad and I haven't closed the door on that idea, we shall see if our next one is an arrogant hothead with humor and bravery unparalleled. He/she can play bass for the Super family band.

Everyone talked about Christmas at dinner last night. Super Preschooler would like a guitar and a new crown. Super Toddler would like a motorcycle but will settle for a bike. And Super Baby seems to just want someone to pass her some more sausage. Awkward Dad wants some time off to be with everyone, and Awkward Mom just wants Christmas to not be in 20 days. 20 days, Readers. 20.

Soda pop, popcorn, and hot dog are different,
but they are mostly just delicious.


  1. I am glad you are enjoying parenthood so much. Isn't it a hoot? And the variety is what gives it its joy and meaning. And its laughs - which we can all use.

  2. 20 days, AAAAHH!! Oh wait, 18 days? AAAAHHH!

    Thanks for sharing your birth stories! It's always fun to hear other people's experiences, and it doesn't make me queasy in the least. No judgment whatsoever - I wanna hear more about this magical epidural! 20 minutes of pushing???? Makes me wish I'd had one! :)

    Isn't it fun how kids come with their own personalities? Katie is so unlike me in so many ways. I think it's incredibly awesome. It's going to be so fascinating to watch what unfolds as these kiddos grow up!

    1. Birth stories are the best! I love to hear them, not sure what that says about me, but whatever!