Saturday, October 31, 2009

Playing Favorites

Since I came back from my trip to NC, the kids have invented a new game. When we are getting ready to go out they always ask "Are you going, Mommy?" and when I say yes they dramatically sigh and say "Oh, we don't want YOU to go. Just Daddy. He's more fun" I think that this is their passive aggressive way of saying they are still a little peeved at me for my trip because they did the same thing to Andy for weeks after his trip in August but still, it stings a little. And sometimes I get back at them by making them listen to NPR in the car instead of their Animal Cracker CD. Hey, two can play the passive aggressive game.

Even after 7 years parenting together I still am competing with Andy for the Fun Parent Award. I spend hours and hours training, yet I'm always at a disadvantage. I blame 2 things: one, my terrible aim and two, my weak bladder. My terrible aim came into play in one of the main events in the Fun Parent Olympics: The Bedtime Toss. Andy is a pro, he can spin the kids around and release them at top speed, yet they still land softly and gently on whatever soft surface they are being tossed onto. He makes it look so easy, I was sure I could compete. Then came the night in 2007 when Ace asked me to step in for Andy for his bedtime toss. I did the spin, maybe not as fast as Andy, but still not bad, then the release, then the...THUNK. Ace missed the bed by a good foot and a half and landed on his (Thank God, carpeted) floor with the THUNK. One really embarrassing call to the pediatrician and an icepack later and I knew that my bedtime tossing days were over.
My weak bladder has caused me to be disqualified from countless Tickle Mommy and Jump On her Belly competitions. Let me state for the record that I never have actually wet my pants, but it has still put a swift end to many tickle fights. You can't be the fun parent and the potential pants wetter at the same time.
So no matter how many games of Crazy Eights I play with the kids, no matter how much time I spend pretending to be Freddy from ICarly or staying up late to sew patches on Ace's Fireman costume, I still only get the Silver, never the coveted Gold Medal of Funness.
My niece is only 6 months but my sister already knows my pain. She carried C. for 9 months (and a few extra days), nurses her day and night, cares for her lovingly even when she is sick and exhausted, but still my brother in law is the one rewarded with the biggest grins and all he has to do is walk in the room. I'm not saying that my brother in law isn't a great dad too and he certainly deserves those big grins but come on, what's a mom gotta do to win? Katherine,I suggest you start practicing the toss immediately.

Sometimes being the less fun parent has it's advantages. Like today for example, the kids have requested that Andy take them trick or treating. And someone has to stay home and guard the candy and test it frequently to make sure it is still fresh. I supposed that that is the job of the less fun parent, and that doesn't seem so bad.

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