Missing: Silliness, Absurdity, Ridiculousness and a pair of Tortoiseshell Sunglasses. Last seen eight months ago at a library Storytime in which several infants were getting a jump start on the Itsy Bitsy Spider and Literacy. If found please return (in that order) to the Dumpling’s mom.
The Dumpling is almost eighteen months and doing great…so great that I’ve lost my ability to marvel at the absurdity of it all. Instead, I just marvel at her. I am slipping into that person I promised I’d never become, the one who has to describe every detail of every room to my little one, from the colors to the fabrics, in English, French, Mandarin, and Spanish, the one who posts their own playground rankings on Facebook, and uploads their own video tutorials on how to make organic, homemade kale chips and applesauce. I haven’t done those things yet, but, they become ever more appealing with each passing day. With my growing need to take all aspects of life way too seriously, I feel the dark side of the “mom extraordinaire” looming. I need to be stopped before I make a portrait wall in our living room of pictures of her poop.
I started writing this blog as therapy. But, when I began to genuinely grow from the baby experience and get some decent sleep, I didn’t need blog therapy anymore. I lost my motivation to write. Away went that, “Necessity is the mother of invention,” thing…or was it, “Sleep deprivation, anxiety, and weight gain breeds a coping mechanism called hilarity,” or “motherhood is the mother of absurdity.”
Anyway, I can’t seem to find the absurdity and hilarity when I go out into the toddler world with the Dumpling lately. I hear impassioned conversations about pacifier weaning or lessons on sharing (as one determined toddler grabs all the Thomas the Train pieces in his arms and darts away from the Barnes and Noble train table with his flustered mother running after him demanding that he share) and know there is a part of me capable of finding only comic relief in it all. But that part of me feels far away.
So, I ignore the debate by the two moms near me about when and how to snatch that evil piece of silicone from their baby’s mouths forever. For a moment I think about how they could be debating the presidential elections, the ferocity and conviction in their voices, and my mind wanders toward recognizing the absurd. But, then it stops. I don’t care. All I want to do is watch the Dumpling bounce around in her Stride Rites. But, I wouldn’t mind getting a little less serious as I watch her explore the world. Luckily, I can tell she has a sense of humor and will help me snap out of my serious state before I try to pitch my Kale Chips to Shark Tank. Slowly but surely I think I can pull myself out of this dull lull. The fate of infant literacy and Thomas the Train sharing depends on it.