Two nights ago I felt what I believed to be the familiar signs of an oncoming sickness. I’ve been taking medicine overnight which helps to mitigate the effects of this illness. It puts me into a deep sleep. The downside, however, is that it makes me lethargic for the better part of the morning. Yesterday I was able to push through it and take the kids to Windward Mall; I failed today. You should know that it’s pretty serious: I haven’t put product in my hair for two straight days.
The skies were gray outside and the temperature was bearable inside. It had all the makings of a stay-in day and that’s what happened. Madison made some rubber clings with her Crayola kit. I watched Inferno. The twins watched a bunch of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, took a long midday nap, and horsed around with Madison and me. Madison and Lynnette left for dinner with her side of the family. They’re chowing down on delicious Outback food but I decided to stay home with the twins because the last time we tried something similar, the twins got fussy before the food arrived and I ended up bringing them home anyway. I can’t blame them. That’s right around the time we try to calm them for bed. It’s one thing if we’re at someone’s house and they get fussy. At least they can move around. At a restaurant, it’s different. If one of them go nuclear, one of us can handle it. If both meltdown simultaneously, no one can enjoy their meals. I figure this way, at least Mad and Lynnette can have a good time, and no one there will have to leave their meals to stroll the twins around.
That leaves me alone with the twins, and as you can see, it’s an all-out, all-agah ragah, or fat pa’ina, if you prefer. Avery and Cole are intermittently playing with their toys while watching Mickey and friends solve contrived problems with the help of a once-faceless mechanical marvel. It’s also worth noting that I’ve been in my pajamas all day. I really hope to feel better tomorrow.
I have to admit – extended time with my kids like this always makes me feel like I’d be a solid-to-pretty good stay-at-home dad. I enjoy rolling around with them, making up little games, and giving them familiar things to respond to. Every day, I still prop both of them up on my chest and ask “How was your day? What did you do?” Cole smiles at me from behind his binky and bangs on my chest. Avery shrugs and tries to hide her neck because she knows that I will use my pointer fingers to tickle her irresistible wattle.
Being home alone with the twins presented me a challenge I had not encountered before. A few minute ago, I had to use the bathroom and ordinarily I would simply make Madison or Lynnette aware of this and they would monitor the twins while I took care of business and a few hands of poker.
Tonight, however, I did not have backup. So I felt compelled to use the bathroom with the door partially open. It was unfamiliar and uncomfortable and then made exponentially worse when Abby peeked at me through the crack in the door. Just when I thought it couldn’t get worse, Abby poked her nose halfway through the crack, then backed out and sneezed. Un. Real.
I didn’t have long to sit there and feel sorry for myself, though, because I heard strange noises coming from the living room. The ubiquitous cacophony of the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse was replaced by the voice of a normal human. And then a human speaking another language. And then no sound at all. Someone had gotten a hold of the remote control.
I would have bet a significant amount of money on Avery at the controls, but I was wrong. It was Cole. When I emerged from the bathroom, he turned to me and squealed. He lifted the remote toward me. Then he turned toward the TV and squealed again. He pointed the remote at the TV. It was like he was trying to tell me something:
Father! Unfortunately, some rogue has manipulated the remote control in such a way that I am no longer able to watch my beloved Mickey Mouse and his friends! Who would do such a thing? Now, as I am only 13 months old, I do not understand how this device works, but even my primitive understanding can grasp that it has something to do with this here device. Father, could you save us, please? We shall investigate this rogue who has stolen away – but at a later date. First, please return to Mickey.