I admit it. I have been called “an indulgent mother.” I know, I know. I live it. I own it. Like Popeye says, “I yam whadeyeyam.” Can’t help it. I would have to also own the fact that I am an older mother, and quite often I am mistaken for being Sunnybuns’ grandma.
Like at school: “Hey dude, what’s yer grandma doin’ here?”
“Dude! Is that your grandma?”
My darlin’ little Dude puts up his dukes and says, “No, man, that’s me ma!!”
And given the fact that I am an older mom, I don’t have quite the same stamina as the younger mothers that Sunnybuns knows. Also, I’m not very strict. Never have been. I have limits, and I draw the line, but hey, he’s a kid, after all.
One little buddy was over recently and Sunnybuns asked if they could ...you know ... do that thing that I let him do?
I said, “Yes, but don’t tell a soul.”
So the pillows all came off the couch and the loveseat, the air mattress was piled on, with numerous blankets and other pillows fetched from around the house, and suddenly the little dudes became a circus act. Jumpin’, flippin’, belly-floppin’. His buddy asked if he could come and live with us.
This very comical exercise program lasted for well over an hour, and they stayed out of my hair, didn’t fight, didn’t whine or complain, and they were happy as clams. Hungry and thirsty, too, but all in all it was a very painless way for them to play together for a while. Cleanup is extremely easy. All the pillows go back where they were. No one knows the difference.
If the doorbell were to ring and we had an unexpected guest, I would simply holler, “Coming! Just a minute!” while hurrying the boys to put the pillows back. No one would be the wiser.
My dad once chastised me in front of the family because I had bought Sunnybuns a bag of marshmallows at the grocery store.
Everyone was snickering behind their hands, because we pretty well knew Pops was goin’ off the deep end anyway, but he went on and on about how poor his family was growin’ up and how they barely had a nickel to buy bread (I’m sure all of you have some “Growing Up During the Depression Story” that you’ve either heard, or that you tell ...) and when he finally took a breath, I said, “Dad. It’s a bag of marshmallows. That’s all. Got ‘em at the dollar store.”
At which point, Sunnybuns walked over and handed him a couple.
“See? And he’s even willing to share his good fortune.” Lord love a duck. I felt like that chick that had to walk around with the scarlet “A” on her forehead — “A” for “An Indulgent Mother.”
Hey, I admit that ol’ Sunnybuns has got enough junk in his room to keep him busy for the next 30 years, but we do hang on to his old stuff, because one day while he’s scoutin’ around in the garage for “treasure,” he’s gonna find a box of old toys long forgotten, and it will be like King Solomon’s Mine all over again.
The little spoiled child will pull out plastic limbs, various arms, hands, legs, shoes, and lovingly cherish them.
“Oh, I remember this. I loved this toy!” and he’ll wonder where the rest of body parts are. Some will be found and joined back together, and he’s happy to play with it just like that.
Y’all already know how the boy loves his boxes to play in. He even had Hubs pull the end off of one big ol’ washin’ machine box and set up a bed/tent in it. He still thinks playin’ with boxes is “cool.” So do I. So little maintenance.
And this furniture that he and his buddy are jumping around on? They do have “off limits” on jumping from the arms or the top — like I said, I do draw the line somewhere — well, it’s second hand stuff. Nice, very nice, but it is second hand.
The woman who traded it for some work Hubs did for her would just have some serious palpitations if she saw them jumping from the cushions onto the pillows, belly-flop style. I can see her stopping by when they’re in full Cirque de Soleil swing, jaw dropped open wide, eyes fluttering in the back of her head, I’d just toss a marshmallow in her mouth to calm her down.
She just wouldn’t get it. She never had kids.
So, you know ... shhh … don’t tell ’er. She’s got a nice overstuffed chair that I’ve got my eye on.