They Start Young

When the kids first came to live with us, we lived in an impressively tiny three-bedroom apartment. As small as you can get and still have three areas where there are beds surrounded by walls.

There was one bathroom.

It was so small that when I moved in, I only unpacked my clothes, and not even all of those.

The main area was a living room that ran into the kitchen, all open together, and the kitchen floor was another place for the kids to hang out (because the bedrooms were so small, this was one of exactly three places they could hang out, unless you count the outside, in which case there were four).

One day I was in the kitchen pretending to make dinner and #5 was spinning around on the floor. He was four years old. Suddenly, he started screaming, “Owie, owie owie!!!” and grabbed his head. Because I didn’t see him hit his head and had been a parent for about nine days, I knew that he was having either a stroke or an aneurysm and would be dead within seconds, and I bent down and grabbed him in a blind panic.

“What’s wrong buddy? Can you wiggle your toes? Blink if you can hear me!”

He stopped crying long enough to reach up and grab the zipper on my sweater. Let me clarify that: he grabbed the zipper of my cardigan, underneath which I was wearing nothing (and I mean nothing) and yanked it down, and thus, wide open.

Then he snickered.

And that’s the story of how #5 faked a head injury in order to look down (around? through?) my shirt.

He went on to successfully perform variations of this trick on my mother, one of his cousins, several well-endowed babysitters, and probably a few people I don’t know about.

Here’s another post about him getting a head start: Confidence Is Everything.