I had a realization this week: I am (inevitably) turning into my mother
With the temperatures soaring and the need to occupy my children’s time still necessary (it is summer vacation, after all), this week I discovered going for ice-cream as a way to kill two birds with one stone. It’s cold, and it entertains the kids for at least 45 minutes, and, BONUS, they are quiet while licking their cones. But I’ve also found myself doing something my mom and dad always did to me when they took me to get ice-cream – grabbing my cone and licking the dripping scoop under the pretense of “cleaning it up.”
Now that I’m a parent and doing the same thing to my children, I got two words for my mom and dad: “Yeah, right.”
It is 100 percent a lie in order to get a few licks of that ice-cream, which a child will not hand over on her own accord by any means, bribes or threats be damned. As a mom, there is some unwritten rule that forbids you to buy your own ice-cream cone. Maybe it’s the guilt of all those creamy calories, or maybe it’s the subconscious fear that someone bigger than you will grab your cone, say “it’s a bit messy dear, let me straighten it up for you,” and before you know it half of your delectable mint-chocolate-chip scoop is gone. I think I need therapy.
But here I was, doing the same thing to my kids. Well, really it was just to Kaya’s cone. In my defense, as a 2-year old, when she eats ice-cream it’s a bit like someone had shoved a container of chocolate ice-cream in her face and then let her lick the bits off her mouth and chin and nose. And the cone starts to drip, which gets all over her clothes and the floor. It’s practically just screaming, begging for me to take a lick. I can’t stand there helplessly while the ice-cream melts all over the place. So, in a sort of shock as I watch history repeat itself, I say as I reach for her cone: “Let me just clean it up real fast.”
And then I take one lick, two, three, oh god I can’t stop, four, five, now Kaya is crying, one more, six. I reluctantly hand back the now nicely-rounded scoop of chocolate. I did it. I stole from my child. I feel strangely satisfied, like I have redeemed my past in some sick and twisted way.
I definitely need therapy.