We have a nightly ritual around here at bedtime. When I announce that it is time for bed, the two oldest kids run and hide. Every night, Smella says, “You can’t catch me, Daddy!” Then she runs into the laundry room and faces away from the doorway like that somehow makes her invisible. The only exception to this is when I say something like “Hey Smella come here real quick” before she has a chance to run away. She then comes over to see what I need and I scoop her up while declaring that, yes, I can in fact catch a three-year-old.
Big D, though, he’s wily. He likes to run into the kitchen and try to get me to chase him around the table. I usually have to resort to blocking the path around the table by pulling out chairs so he’ll have to move them out of the way, or at the very least, trip over them and require a trip to the emergency room. Sometimes he just hides instead of making me do the table chase. Last night, while I was putting the two little ones to sleep, he hid. Let me correct that. He didn’t just hide. He hid well. I walked around the house making a lot of noise trying to get him to giggle and give away his position. Nothing. Not a peep.
(WARNING: This is the part where I come off as a true douchebag of a parent. Again.) After making my first sweep of the house, I had a bright idea. I would flush him out by scaring the shit out of him. Brilliant! I started going back through the house turning all the lights out as I went. I heard a few muffled noises but I still couldn’t tell where they were coming from. It was just a matter of time. Finally, after I turned off the last light and stood waiting in the pitch black kitchen for about ten seconds, I heard him coming out. He flew out of his room, flipping on the hall light as he ran to and swung open the front door, and looked out to see where I had gone. Because that’s what I do. I routinely forget to put him to bed and instead decide to turn out all the lights and go for a walk or something.
He was not amused. In fact, he might have been on the verge of tears. On the verge. That’s not so bad, right? I mean, he never shed an actual tear or anything. The moral of the story is: don’t hire me as a babysitter. The other moral is: it’s always better to risk physical injury to your child than to cause him emotional harm.
I’ll let you know how the trip to the ER goes tonight.