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Sir, Your Kid’s Pants Are Down

Ronan has begun the wonderful part of toddlerhood where he forms complex sentences, events that delight and charm his parents but probably confuse casual passerby.

Whether it’s jumping up to shout “E-X-I-T” during a movie, or exclaiming “Oh no!” watching an interstitial for a news program that showed the Hudson landing of US Air flight 1549, his exclamations are wildly entertaining to his parents and grandparents. I’m not sure they are as exciting to other people, so I try not to share them too much in casual conversation.

We’ve all met those parents who think their kid is the most entertaining, but really, they’re not. It’s kind of annoying, if I remember my pre-parenting days. Sometimes I think my brother just barely tolerates my endless stories of accomplishments.

Now that I’m one of them, it’s hard not to delight in everything Ronan does, even when he’s being obstreperous. (Like the other night, when he wanted to watch TV and we wanted him to eat dinner. Five seconds and one cracker later, he shouted, “DONE!” despite not eating hardly anything. I had to give him points for inventiveness. However, I’m painfully aware that you probably have no idea why that was so wonderful. You just had to be there.)

As he learns to put together words, I am amazed by his vocabulary and often wonder where he got that word or this word. He still occasionally speaks in complete gibberish, and that’s cute too.

He also sometimes forgets words, or won’t use words. He loves the idea of telephones, calling his paternal grandparents almost every day since their recent visit, and now he wants to call Terry’s friends as well. But once on the phone he won’t speak. He just listens.

Often I forget that he won’t always say he needs something, even if he’s in trouble. After a long day of playground, library, and errands, we were returning from the store. I had a heavy load of groceries in one hand and Ronan’s hand in the other. We were half a block from home.

I know we made it across the street okay because I checked him visually once we crossed the street. I took his hand again when we crossed the parking lot for the local pharmacy.

And that must have been when I stopped visual contact, just to think about the groceries and a way to shift them around with one hand so they didn’t feel so heavy.

As I mentally, physically and visually adjusted the grocery bags, a young man of about twelve or thirteen came up to me.

“Sir, your kid’s pants are down.”

He said this with a nonchalance that indicated that he often encounters depantsed toddlers on our street. That nonchalance led me to my first thought, which was, “What the hell are you talking about?”

In a split-second, I turned to Ronan to find his shorts had fallen off. He had been walking for about five minutes or so without saying anything. Two fingers in his mouth, he just kept walking even though he was having some difficulty keeping up with his ankles effectively shackled together.

I dropped the grocery bags on the street and pulled up his pants. “Oh, pants are down!” Ronan said. And then he giggled.

I’m sure this entry will be the first one pulled when he’s old enough to read this blog, but he was sure cute just mildly accepting that his shorts were off. He just kept walking.

I’m immensely proud of him, even when he’s thinking up ways to get out of dinner to watch TV, but I hope he never loses his good nature. I have no idea where he got it from – certainly not from me – but it’s wonderful to experience.

And, I hope you don’t mind all the gushing parent stories either.


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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on July 2, 2009 3:38 PM.

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