I’m a bad parent. I’m here to beg forgiveness. I would like to thank the Academy for this honor, my induction into the 2010 Parent Hall of Shame (hat tip to Sarah).
Every morning when we arrive at day care, Mikey’s hair is horrible. Oh, it's still cute, but he has bed-head. The back sticks up like a demented cockatoo or like David Beckham on a really bad day. He also has chunks of dried banana caked in his hair. Why he insists on rubbing banana slices on his head during breakfast, I’ll never know. Let’s just assume that banana slime nourishes his hair, making it shiny and full of body.
Then there’s the nose. Snot-nosed kid is not an insult, it’s a daily reality. I can barely get myself ready for work in the sluggish, groggy early weekday mornings. It’s still dark outside, and Mikey looks a-ok to my bleary eyes. Then we arrive at day care, and I truly see his face up close in the light of day. His nose is a horrifying dried green snotscape. It’s like a topographical map of the Hill country drawn in green. So, here I am with a banana-crusted, bedhead, booger-enameled pitiful child specimen. Please don’t turn me in to CPS.
It gets worse. One of my other responsibilities in the morning is putting clothes on this child. This is nearly impossible. Children grow so darn fast that at least 90% of the clothing we have is too small. The stuff that fits must still be boxed up somewhere, because I ain't seeing it. My objective is simply to find clothes that fit and get them on the baby as efficiently as possible. Details such as style and matching colors are secondary. I see the other kids at daycare (mainly the girls) wearing their cute-as-a-button matching outfits with everything from hair bow to frilly socks in perfect harmony. Then, Mikey comes strutting in looking like a nightmare version of a Bill Cosby sweater. Oh well. If there's ever an open casting call for extra street Ragamuffins for an Oliver Twist show, then we're golden.
On other mornings, Mikey gets to be Shoeless Joe Baby. I beg for forgiveness here. I also beg for forgiveness when I don’t bring him wearing a jacket on a cold day. See also the laundry passage above.
How could I possibly forget the animal hair? We have a gigantic tabby and a corgidor that can shed enough white hairs daily to reconstitute an entire new dog or maybe a Betty White. Pet hair is omnipresent. Shannon goes through several cases of those fly-paper lint rollers trying to stay presentable. No matter how diligent our efforts, there are some mornings that Mikey shows up at daycare looking like he’s wearing a Mohair sweater. Our banana-crusted, snot-nosed, mismatched, shoeless, jacketless little Dickensian street urchin baby also appears to live in a filthy animal barn.
Please forgive me. I promise to do better. I’m sure Mikey will be fine too, after a few years of therapy.