18 May 2011

An Apology

Dear Doozer,

I'm sorry. Really sorry.

Let me explain.

It's come to our attention that children your age often get enrolled in something called preschool. In fact, a co-worker of mine recently selected a preschool for his daughter to attend in the fall (about five months in advance). Apparently, this is something we should have already been looking into and planning.

Here's the thing. In our defense, your mom and I are not so great at this whole parenting thing. Sure, we may look like we have it together. You are consistently—and properly—washed, fed, and dressed. We can be fun. We're steady, we're present. You seem to like us. Most of the time.

But the truth is, more often than not, it is a charade. We are out of our depths. Sure, we're reasonably intelligent, university-educated individuals who consumed baby-rearing materials in print and online as though we were cramming for a particularly taxing final exam. Yes, we have managed to keep our own lives moving along (mostly), in addition to being your parents. We are also, usually, washed, fed, and dressed properly.

At the same time, this is probably the most challenging experience either one of us has ever faced. We had this plan, before you came along, that since we were here first (obviously), you would have to be integrated into our existing life, as opposed to us completely rearranging ourselves for your benefit. And oh, how the tables have turned, you conniving little upstart! Got us both wrapped around your little finger from the start, lording over the joint as if you were the one who was wearing the pants and making us feel as if we'd never even heard of pants. You asserted your dominance early on and have staunchly refused to relinquish that surprisingly strong iron grip of yours ever since.

Napoleon complex, much?

Anyway, back to the preschool thing. From here, it's a slippery slope. Every moment of this life counts and your mom and I are now fearful that we have forever altered your path through this world—for the worse. We have no idea how you go about selecting a preschool. What if we pick the wrong one? What if we find the right one, only it's too late and we can't get you in?

And if we don't get this preschool thing right, it will no doubt result in a catastrophic chain reaction. You won't excel in high school, there'll be no Harvard or Yale for you. You won't be brilliant and revolutionary and successful. You'll be mediocre and, therefore, embittered, drinking heavily and chain-smoking, complaining weekly to your shrink about what lousy, pathetic parents you have, who couldn't get anything right, who failed to do something so incredibly simple as use their combined intellect and intelligence to proactively seek out and confidently select a preschool to get you started on your journey in life.

If it makes you feel any better, neither of us went to Yale or Harvard. Sure, George W. Bush did. And yes, he was president (two times). But he was also a tremendous a-hole.

And just so you know, you should cut us some slack. Seriously. You don't like to sleep. So we never get to really rest. Which is exhausting, let me tell you. Also, you love books, but you can't read, so we have to do that for you. At least 25 percent or more of each day is spent reading. And believe me, I'd love to spend that time finishing the new Jonathan Franzen novel rather than reading Daisy-Head Mayzie for the 416th time. You have a voracious appetite for . . . everything. Food, cartoons, swimming, stomping in puddles, digging in dirt, reciting names of dinosaurs, listening to music, visiting Trader Joe's, running in circles, asking questions, giving hugs, getting hugs, drinking milk, pretending to cook, laughing, sharing, stomping in more puddles, petting dogs, watering pants, sliding . . .

Phew. It's exhausting just writing about being your parent, let alone actually being your parent. You're so damn determined to squeeze every single drop of experience out of this world, of living life to the fullest, as if it was your job. It's like no one told you this is not Las Vegas, that we can slow down and (for god's sake) take a nap once in a while.

So pardon us for being a little bit tired. We'll work on the preschool thing tomorrow. Or this weekend, for sure. Definitely by the end of the month. Let us just have one nap and then we'll start worrying about your future, okay?

Please don't hate us.


Your Dad

1 comment:

  1. Good stuff. I think he might forgive you. I watched Nursery University on Netflix soon after our convo. You should check that out--but after SOA.