Captain’s Log. Daddy Chronicles. Diaper Date 1566.
Today I was left alone with both children. Since I am still on Winter Break, both of the heirs to the Captain’s empire stayed home instead of going to daycare. Mrs. Captain claims to have to work, but I think she may be abandoning the ship for a breath of sanity (who could blame her). The fact that she has to work is not appreciated by the eldest.
“I don’t want to stay home with Daddy.”
She thinks I can’t hear her.
“Mommy, I want you to stay home.”
Now listen, it is 6:30 a.m. and I am already hearing signs of mutiny. I haven’t even had a cup of coffee yet. I’m still wiping the remnants of the Sandman’s persecutory blasts from my eyes. And now I have to watch my back – from a four year old who has access to scissors, bats, and other weapons.
“We are going to have fun today, sweetie. No worries.”
She glares at me. At four, she is able to shoot a look of rejection that would defeat the most ardent negotiator. Today is going to be a struggle. I decide the only way to get through the day is with a smile. And bribes. We see Mrs. Captain off.
“I don’t want to be here.”
“Would you like to watch a show?”
Suddenly I am a hero. But I tread lightly. I grew up on Bill Cosby. I know the fickle nature of children. I am wary.
The show ends. I make a bagel. I asked her if she wanted one. She said no. I made my bagel.
“Daddy, are you going to share that with me?”
“You said you didn’t want one.”
“I changed my mind.”
“Sure honey. I’d love to share this with you.” I surreptitiously grab another half of bagel and begin to toast it.
“No, no. Daddy, I want to share YOUR bagel. I don’t want my own.”
Now the girl is rationing what I am eating. I make the extra half of bagel. She doesn’t notice. After all this, the girl is still not happy.
“Daddy, you aren’t in charge.”
“Really? Who is?”
“And who put you in charge, Honey?”
“My friend. Gidalvo.” (or some gibberish that I can’t understand she always makes up names)
“Yes. And he is going to throw you in jail.”
“Yes. Jail. And his dog, Cobigojerico (I kid you not, it was this cracy of a name. Editors note: If your name is Cobigojerico, or if your child is named that, or your dog – then we apologize.) His dog is going to eat you.”
This catches me by surprise.
“Yes. He is going to eat you up.”
“Who will be your daddy then?”
“Poppy.” (My father. Yes, weird.)
“Who’s gonna be your Poppy?”
She finally collapses into laughter. Almost on cue, the diaper dweller wakes up. He proves to be a good distraction and competition for my attention. The day proceeds. Her mood is elevated by the presence of snow falling from the heavens. The day includes a trip to the doctor and the “Fry Store” – which banks me some daddy credit and hopefully saves me from the jaws of Cobigojerico (we’ll call him Cojo for short).
Now call me crazy here, but I was a Psychology minor…many years ago. I know she is four, but the eldest scares me at times. She doesn’t protest as much when daddy has to work, but when she has to stay with daddy? Mutiny.
knowthink she is joking, but…WHY SHE GOT ME GETTING THROWN IN JAIL AND EATEN BY A DOG????!??? I will have to refer to my resources.
I know this is a phase I think this is just a phase, but I would be lying if I didn’t admit it hurt the Captain’s heart just a little bit. I mean you watch their birth, feed them, protect them, and then they are feeding you to imaginary dogs with unintelligible names. I know it will pass. I remember clearly saying my prayers next to my mother and saying that I wished she was the duck and I was the wolf – from Peter and the Wolf (A classic if you have never heard it before. The Leonard Bernstein version is the best.). In the tale, the wild chases the duck on a otherwise calm day in the meadow and swallows it whole. Now I don’t know what I was mad at my mother about, but she certainly didn’t deserve to be devoured. I love my mother (and never devoured her), so there is hope that 30 years from now the eldest will love me as well and will have avoided sending her hired muscle after dear old dad.
Anyways. The eldest and I did have a good day. Gidalvo and Cojo never came. I was never in danger -though I shudder with each strange bark I hear.
But I will sleep with one eye open tonight.
Captain Out. (Hopefully not permanently.)
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