Scene: Interior of an unassuming suburban house. 12:45 pm. Three year old girl is lying on the kitchen floor. Half eaten peanut butter and honey sandwich is at the dining room table.
Mom: “Finish your lunch.”
Girl: (Rolling around) “I’m too tired to eat.”
Mom: “Hmm…sounds like nap time. Go potty and let’s go upstairs.”
Girl: “I can’t walk. Carry me.”
Mom, excited for early nap time, obliges, carrying preschooler like a baby to the bathroom, and then hauls Girl, Girls’s blanket, and Girl’s Baby That Has No Legs (Mom! Where’s my Baby That Has No Legs?) upstairs.
Girl flops on toddler bed, rolls around, giggles, and seems decidedly less tired. Mom begins to feel the quiet time slipping between her fingers. Girl demands Are You My Mother as she has every day for the past month. Mom has it ready, she’s no dummy, and hands Girl the book. Girl has book damn near memorized, and “reads it all by herself.”
Girl: (Begins story) “A mother bird sat on her egg. The egg jumped…”
After story, Mom reads Llama Llama Mad at Mama, gives Girl hugs and kisses, struggles to get her aging body off of the hard floor, and heads downstairs.
Two minutes later. Either a herd of elephants has been let loose or Girl is out of bed.
Mom: “Get back in your bed!”
Girl: “I AM in my bed!”
Mom goes back to reading a funny blog post about kids swearing. It’s funny because it’s not her kid cussing in front of the neighbors.
One minute later. Girl gets back in bed (what a liar) with what sounds like the entire contents of her bookshelf.
Mom still reading.
Twenty four minutes later. Girl still talking to herself, and the actual time she usually naps is approaching.
Six minutes later. Girl comes downstairs.
Girl: “I’m hungry.”
Mom: “No you aren’t.”
Girl: “I mean, I’m thirsty.”
Mom: “Your water bottle is by your bed. Get back upstairs.”
Three minutes later. That Girl. Again.
Girl: “Mom? My hair hurts.”
Mom: “Your head?”
Girl: “No. My hair.”
Mom: “Get in your bed! If I have to tell you again, I’m taking your baby away.”
Girl: “But…but… I can’t get any sleep! Waaaah!!
Two seconds later. Girl talking to herself. Probably about what a bitch her mom is. Mom writing this post.
About one hour since “nap time” started, Girl is quiet. Mom smiles.