Saturday, September 24, 2016

Everything Is Trying To Kill My Child

That might be a slight exaggeration, but sometimes it sure feels like it.

Take for instance the nickel I gave her to put in the collection dog at the grocery store. We've been putting coins in the grocery store puppy for probably a year, so while I was fumbling with my wallet and the bags while my daughter was getting more and more restless I didn't even think about giving her the nickel to hold.

It wasn't until she had it in her fingers that my DadSense kicked in and I asked for it back.  While this made perfect sense from a "protect my child"perspective, it did nothing for the "protect my sanity" perspective.  She kicked into meltdown overdrive. I, of course, did the fatherly thing and tried to pry it out of her hand. After all, coins go into esophagi and kill your children.

The only thing this accomplished was to cement my child in the Guinness Book under "Grip, Strongest, Toddler with".  I'm trying to maneuver her and the cart to minimize the impact of the ensuing temper tantrum. I look up and for a moment I lock eyes with the man behind me.
In a perfect world, he would have been a father too, and he would nod and give me a look that spoke volumes. "Do what you got to do," would be the unspoken expression of solidarity, "I get it."

In a sightly less perfect version of this, he would give me a look that said "I'm not a father, but you have inspired me to settle down and have a bunch."

The look that I got was "You make children cry."  Maybe, but I keep them alive too!  

Another incident at another grocery store involved her running in front of the grocery cart.  Now, I bet you're thinking that I ran her over.  Ha ha on you, because I didn't.  At least, not this time that I'm telling you about.  She ran in front of the cart while it was stopped, then grabbed a hold of the front of the cart and started pulling it behind her.  Not a problem so long as you remember that you have to keep moving or stop the cart.

This was the day that she got her first lesson in momentum.

Of course, DadSemse had kicked in and I was reaching for the cart while this was happening.  I was too slow and only grabbed it as it hit her.  To the older lady that was just pulling into the aisle, it appeared that I was an inattentive father that was shoving full grocery carts into crying children lying on the floor.

Later on, in that same grocery store visit, as we were checking out (I say we, but really it was only the cashier and myself involved with the transaction - the kid had decided that the chain divider hanging under the conveyor belt was her new puppy and was petting it.  Whatever, she wasn't crying anymore and we only had to last as long as it took to get to the car.), she got up and darted past me.  Sadly, DadSense told me to check that she wasn't darting into immediate danger, and in doing so she tripped over my foot.

Second lesson in momentum, another new lesson in gravity, and a very, very special lesson in how Floor vs Face is always going to end poorly for Face.

And I, as is the way of such things, am doing my best to ignore the fact that the same lady that saw me hit her with a cart is the same lady that was behind me watching me trip my child.

You may be sensing a theme here.  You are correct, and you should thank your high school English teacher for the lessons they taught you in detecting themes in great literature.  A suitable subtitle for this post would be "Everything Is Trying To Kill My Child: At the Grocery Store".

Or maybe "Everything Is Trying To Kill My Child (And Pin It On Me)".

Or maybe an entirely different title: "DadSense Needs To Be a Little Faster".

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