Monday, March 8, 2010

I woke up in a parallel universe, and I like this one better

This morning, I heard some hushed whispering from the kitchen. No urgent or threatening tones, so I took my time getting out of bed. IF they needed me, trust me - they would have been standing rightnext to my head prodding me and pointing at each other and layering one report of misconduct on top of another.

Eventually, I dragged myself out of bed. As I wandered into the kitchen tying my bathrobe shut and rubbing my eyes, I stopped and backed up a few steps. Lucy was standing on the toilet, brushing her teeth.

"Honey, did you already eat breakfast?"
"Yep" she said as she squirted the mandated pea-size dallop of toothpaste onto her brush. "Max made me some cereal."

I continued on to the kitchen, where Max was busily wiping off the kitchen counter.
"Good morning Mom ! I made Lucy and me each some oatmeal, and our lunches are already packed...I made peanut butter and jelly - I got frustrated because I couldn't find the jelly at first, but then I found it and I made the sandwiches and then I also packed some strawberries."

Wait. WHAT? I looked around the kitchen. The dishes were in the sink - rinsed. The canister of oatmeal was put away. The living room was still relatively clean.

"Wow Max, that is AWESOME. Thanks man !"

"No problem it was easy, and I wanted to let you sleep."

So this is where I shook my head back and forth to clear the cobwebs because obviously SOMETHING had transpired in the last 12 hours. When my child went to bed last night, he had to be reminded to use the bathroom and brush his teeth. The entire area of the kitchen where he had eaten dinner was littered with crumbs, scraps of meat, napkins and a puddle of milk. His dirty clothes had somehow been left in the middle of the hallway. Snips of paper from an abandoned art project were scattered across the coffee table and floor. He had been unable to get himself a glass of water and had requested refills and dessert be served to him, with an attitude that was more "patron of a Zagat-rated restaurant" rather then "kid eating beef kabobs at our kitchen counter."

And yet this morning, somehow, he prepared breakfast for two using the microwave, and then cleaned up after himself. He got dressed in something that was both appropriate and clean, and had sent his sister to use the bathroom while he picked out an outfit for her to wear as well. The dogs were fed, and lunches were packed complete with napkins and ice packs, fruit in small tupperwares, water bottles filled.

I am sitting on the couch right now, wondering what he's got planned for dinner. I have no idea what's going on, but if this is my new reality I will officially declare myself a successful parent and start writing a parenting book tomorrow. However, I remain highly suspicious - because really, the boy has thus far been incapable of remembering to flush the toilet after taking a dump. So until THAT happens, the jury is out.

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