I wish I could believe it is because they love me. I wish I could believe that they fight over me because they can’t live without me. I wish the screaming and the crying and the almost pulling my pants down this morning was based on their internal, overwhelming need for me. Not the overwhelming need to win over the other sibling.
The older children have spent every Tuesday and Thursday morning at sports camp. This means I am the sole source of comfort for the littles, X-Man and Cinco. Part of the benefit for them, or so I thought, would be more personalized attention and no sibling to whisper in their ear “Hey wanna watch minions?” So, how could it go wrong?
Well first off, I could forbid X-Man to smush up his banana and finger paint the table with it. Furthermore, I could offer Cinco a banana, which, until this morning, she loved. Now, she is terrified of them. Cleary I would have to hold her, to rescue her from the terror known as produce. X-Man, already traumatized by the quashing of his artistic expression, took this act, the holding of his baby sister, as a complete and utter betrayal of him.
But X-Man knows my heart, he loves that I love him dearly and I probably just needed a reminder of his existence. So he launched himself out of his chair, still covered with banana, and flung himself into my legs. Good thing I put on clean pants, otherwise what else would he have wiped his face and hands on? Cinco herself had to be cleaned up from breakfast so together we lurched towards to bathroom, Cinco in arm, X-Man hanging off my legs, bellowing as I clearly had forgotten he existed.
In order to clean X-Man up, I had to put Cinco down. So she collapsed on my feet, wailing. X-Man had his arms extended “hold please thank you. Hold please thank you!” I picked him up to attempt to assuage him, temporarily. Cinco was not pleased.
Exiting the bathroom, I thought I might have stumbled upon a solution, walk holding both children’s hand. Neither found this to be acceptable. So of course, both collapsed to the floor. I let go of their hands. They grasped my ankles, both, howling away. Good thing I had the windows open to cool down the house, otherwise the neighbors wouldn’t know how horrible a mother I was.
I dragged them to the living room, settled them in front of some toys and attempted to be somewhat productive. I checked my email on my phone and discovered that one of my articles for the other blog had posted. I decided to get on the computer to look it over, mostly because I had already discovered a typo, being an article I had written. As they seemed content to bond over their mutual abandonment by their mother, I snuck off to do some much needed editing.
Cinco gave me fifteen seconds before joining me, needing to sit in my lap. Fair enough, I can type one handed. If only holding her was part of her plan. But she neededPotty Mommy, potty!”to sprawl across my lap and try to type along with me. To not allow her to do so is to crush her soul. And of course, X-Man had joined the fray by this time. I tried to tell him I was holding his sister and couldn’t hold him, but he couldn’t hear me over his own tears and the howls of indignation coming from Cinco. X-Man held the ultimate trump card. When I wouldn’t pick him up, while Cinco sprawled all over me, and the computer, he yelled “
Yep, I’ll still drop everything to run that boy to the bathroom. Cinco figured this gave her easy access for the treasure trove known as the bathroom drawers. I positioned myself in such a way that she did not have access, so she toddled off to yell her frustration at the neighbors.
I returned to the computer, as I had yet to actually accomplish what I had set out to do. X-Man followed me and clambered up into my lap. Cinco’s sixth sense alerted her to the fact that she was being neglected somehow and came running back into the office. Cinco doesn’t try to ask permission, she prefers the plunge ahead and plead forgiveness approach. And so, she pushed her head through the armrest and used her abs of awesomeness to climb into my lap. X-Man considered being outraged, but he was tired from his previous exertions. However, Cinco was ready to play her ultimate trump card. She decided to nurse, it had to be right then and it would require my entire lap. Clearly X-Man would have to go. She gave him a helpful kick in the back to motivate him.
X-Man slid down turned and asked “Watch Minions?” I figured he had earned it by tolerating Cinco’s shenanigans, so I said ok. At that, Cinco decided she no longer needed to nurse. She’d go watch Minions too. And I had been replaced by a fat, yellow……thing. And I couldn’t be happier.