Thursday, December 02, 2010

The Toddler Awakes

Remember how yesterday I talked about how it's important not to wake the sleeping toddler of my NaNo ms? I caved. Sort of.

Back when I was a freshman in college, I worked as a live-out nanny/au pair for a lovely family. Mother was American, Father was French, and they had two children, Toddler Boy and Infant Girl (if anybody is tempted to mention that those cherubs are now grownups, I will put on my stompy boots and kick you into next week.) The times I was there coincided with Toddler Boy's naptime, during which he did not actually have to sleep, but did have to stay in his room and be quiet until I told him naptime was over. While this nominally was meant to assure that Toddler Boy's naptime coincided with Infant Girl's naptime, Infant Girl wasn't always with the program on this rule and end of her brother's naptime often coincided with the end of Guiding Light.

Where, you may ask, is she going with this? Hang with me for a minute. It's pertinent, I promise. Now where were we?

Often, Toddler Boy would actually nap during naptime. Other times, he would play quietly with toys, "read aloud" to himself in English or French, or other such approved activities. Then there was the day he was too quiet (any parents or childcare workers know what that sounds like) and I went into the room to check. Everything in his room, and I do mean everything, was in a big lump in the middle of the floor. Clothing, books, toys, and even I kid you not, pieces of furniture, on top of a child-sized suitcase.

Me: Toddler Boy, what are you doing?

Toddler Boy: (looks up, picture of complete innocence) Taking my room to show to Grandmere. (bit of backstory; Grandmere was Father's mother and the family was preparing for a trip there to see her. No, they did not take the au pair with them, harumph.)

Me: Okay, let's go see if Infant Girl is awake now and we can all have a snack. (takes Toddler Boy by the hand and closes door to room; parents will want to see the crime scene.)

Then there was the time Toddler Boy was not allowed to play with a desired toy (it was loud) until Infant Girl was awake.

Toddler Boy: Can I play with Desired Toy now?

Me: If Infant Girl is awake. (gets up to check if Infant Girl is indeed awake)

Toddler Boy: (races across hall and into nursery, I hear the whump of crib meeting wall)

Infant Girl: (rudely awakened baby wail)

Toddler Boy: Infant Girl is awake.
(no babies were harmed in the making of this anecdote, but the nanny's nerves were shot)

Stories are like that. NSoH had decided it was done napping and would soon start taking apart its room if I didn't get back in there. Primordial ooze of next historical is a mass of colicky bubbles (the writers reading this are now nodding like bobbleheads - yes, ooze can have colic) and I am still bribable with good European cookies. Point is, it's new words time and I am making new words, so all's right with the world.

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