Sometimes I feel like I have a perpetual headache. Not just an occasional sharp pain behind your eyeball here or there, I’m talking about the legitimate feeling that a team of miners were using sharp forks and dynamite to excavate my cranial walls.
If it weren’t for the obvious non-stop cacophony of toddler screams, whining, brawls and toys stuck on a repeating sound, I’d certainly be busy self-diagnosing a brain tumor on WebMD rather than writing this post.
A few weeks ago, I had one of those rare moments where I just snapped.
I sent Ava upstairs on a fools errand to buy myself a few minutes in the conflict-free zone. I asked her to go and find a doll that I knew was buried deep within the ‘bin of dolly abyss’. I was confident she wasn’t going to locate the doll and it would give me a few minutes to collect myself (close my eyes, count to 10 while strangling the life out of the edges of a granite counter top) and be able to return to my duties as a pleasant, even-keeled father.
Five minutes turned into fifteen, which inspired me to remember what was even worse than the screaming and volatile behavior…
I raced through the kitchen, rounded the corner in the living room, swung myself around the bannister and flew up the stairs. I was prepared for ‘something’, but just wasn’t sure what that might be.
She had found her doll and was on her way back downstairs when she got mildly distracted in mommy and daddy’s room. The site of an unguarded bottle that pumps out greasy lotion was just too difficult to deny.
ME: Ava! C’mon girl….what happened? How did going upstairs to get a doll turn into this?
AVA: I made this for you dada!
And it was beautiful. A live Johnson & Johnson exhibit in my very own bedroom accompanied by a ‘thumbs up’. And I only had to wash the duvet cover and two shams.
What a twisted and demented world I live in, when I know what a sham is….and silence is the enemy.