We are a one-child family. I come from a single-child family while Red has a sibling. My dad has numerous siblings and my mom has two. I’ve gotten pitying looks on and off while I was growing up, about being a “single, only, lonely” child. And I’ve smiled to myself because that’s not all that being an only child’s cracked up to be.
It mainly bites being an only child when you’re in trouble and you can’t get away with blaming it on your dolls. I tried that when I was chubby and cute and got way for with it only because I was chubby, cute and a toddler.
Those things land you in the shrink’s office when it’s done at an age when the whole world, including you, knows that dolls can’t talk back, move or mess with your parents’ record player set. The Annabelles and Chuckys of the world are no help when it comes to convincing parents.
Fast-forward to the decade we’re in now and I’ve been told SO MANY TIMES that I ought to have a second child else my single, only child won’t grow up properly. Or that TO will need someone as a playmate and again the litany of “an only child, is a lonely child” yada yada yada. But over the last few days I got to live out the scenarios of having 2 children and it was illuminating.
For the most part TO is happy to have younger kids, especially girls, over at our place. They’re cute, they follow him around, call him an “older brother” and usually do what he says. They won’t mess with his dinos, aren’t too interested in his books and for the most part, aren’t competition. Till now.
We have, as a part of our extended family, a chubby little bossy pants. She’s utterly cuddlable, is very clear about what she wants and is very expressive. She also bodyslams herself onto prone bodies and not being a lightweight, it can be a startling experience when a little butterball just jumps on you with a move worthy of Wrestlemania. She’s also curious, very talkative and consents to sitting still while you do her hair, sing, play and do slightly more sedentary things. Sitting still with TO wasn’t something I remember doing much once he mastered standing up.
So Saturday night I have two kids who are vying for viewing rights on the telly. One wants a space cartoon and another wants a British piggy and her family. Both are communicating LOUDLY, SIMULTANEOUSLY and at ME. Both want to be heard and catered to. Immediately! Red is NOWHERE in the picture, having locked himself into the only other room that has a t.v. Each one is making frown faces and doesn’t want to compromise. Miss Bossypants comes upto me and gets in my face and says she wants Peppa Pig! Emphatically!
Pre-teen brat sits on the couch and complains that Bossypants always gets what she wants because she’s younger. And BAM! a vision of what my life could’ve been played out in front of my eyes. And while it isn’t unpleasant I don’t like being stared down by a cute albeit grumpy face that promises retribution for not being allowed to watch a goody two-shoes animated pig.
One kid who leaves extinct reptiles all over and who is responsible for sofa cleaners fishing out a series of shark miniatures from under the cushions is enough excitement for me any day! Any and all kids who want to come into mi casa, will be strictly on a timeshare basis!