Friday, July 13, 2007


I do believe I’ve just had an epiphany.


I often find myself on the tail end of a discussion about grandparents. Many of my friends have complained about the time they have to spend re-training their children after an extended visit with Nanny and Pop-pop, the Mee-maw- and Gramps-induced sugar highs (and lows) they end up dealing with because the children were laden with candy and sodas right before being picked up by Mom and Dad, and the noisy toys requiring 18 AAA batteries that are gifts from … you guessed it … Grandpa and Grandma.


“I don’t think they understand that not following the way we discipline sends mixed messages to my son and makes it harder when we get him home.” OR “I think they just must not remember what it is like to parent. They have forgotten what it’s like to deal with little children after sugar.” OR “Times have changed. They just don’t seem to know how to pick a decent toy that won’t give me a headache or run out after an hour of play.”


I used to commiserate and nod along with their suppositions about why grandparents are the way they are.


But today I had an epiphany.


It came during a day of cleaning up messes in order to make room for more messes, children refusing to nap because they don’t want to miss out an any mess-making (yes, I put them in their beds but you can rip a book into a thousand pieces rather silently and Mommy won’t hear and will not want to check on you because you are being so quiet and she thinks you are sleeping), and my five-year old responding to my groan after discovering said awake children and torn book, “Well, Mom, life is hard.” (!!!)


When my repeated calls upstairs to Miriam were met with silence, I found her applying toothpaste to her face, her hands, her brother’s face (who went to investigate when she wouldn’t answer), and the child’s table in their room. As I was scrubbing at her face, hands, brother’s face, and table, my one thought was, “I can’t wait until I’m baby-sitting your little girl and I will TEACH her to make messes so that YOU can clean them up!”


At which point came afore-mentioned epiphany. Our parents are not in the early stages of Alzheimer’s nor confused by modern times.


They remember perfectly.


Every lemon drop, every Dr. Pepper, every drop of caffeine and injection of sugar, every beeping toy requiring a zillion batteries, every second-guess of your method of discipline, ALL OF THEM, are calculated moves that have been at least 20 years in the making.


It’s not senility. It’s revenge.


But I’m on to them…



  1. every gigantic stuffed animal horse that takes up more space than your house...

  2. ok, that might be the case....when i said dylan was making a mess at work, my mom's response was "i need to buy him more toys to have there.".......ARGH!!!!!!!!!!

  3. innovativelearningJuly 22, 2007 at 7:49 AM

    I think your on to something.

  4. Do you mind if I add you to my blogroll?


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