At the kiddie gym this morning, Nora was being particularly social and adorable, walking up to kids and giving high fives, sharing her blocks, hugging all the nannies, and giggling at everything. I sat in the corner with a random dad, both of us watching her make her rounds, when the dad turned to me:
Random Dad: “Ok, so I have to know– what’s your secret?!”
Me (laughing): “Honestly, I don’t have one! I don’t know how she got this amazing, friendly, adorable personality. It’s certainly not from me! She takes after my husband more, I think. He’s very outgoing. But I’ll take some credit because she’s with me most of the day, so I guess I must be doing something right?”
Random Dad: “Oh. I meant how’d you get that coffee in here? They never let me bring mine in.”
7th Grader: “We’re wearing the same jeans I think.”
Me: “Oh, look at that– we are! That’s cool!”
7th Grader: “For you.”
Rushing to kiddie class this morning, I’m pushing Nora’s stroller down the street when I get stuck behind the world’s slowest stroller-pushing woman on the world’s narrowest sidewalk. At one point, thank god, the sidewalk widens, and so I take this opportunity to speed up and bypass the woman and her stroller. I guess she didn’t appreciate this maneuver, as she then yelled, “Excuse me– don’t think you’re better than me just because you have a bigger, fancier stroller!”
Which is absurd.
Your stroller is carrying a 30-pound cat.
THAT is why I’m better than you.
Nora, who is 14 months old, only wants to hang out with older kids, and she is particularly fond of these 3-year-old twin boys at the kiddie gym, Charlie and Nate. These boys are super rambunctious and she always ends up getting trampled on, but she doesn’t mind at all (if this attitude later transfers to dating, we’re fucked.)
So yesterday she was playing with the twins, falling all over the place and laughing her ass off. At one point, I went to the other side of the gym to get my water bottle, leaving her alone with the twins and their mom for a few seconds. Almost as soon as I walked away…
Twins’ Mom (yelling to me): “You need to get back here! It’s not safe to leave Nora alone with the boys!”
Me: “Oh, sorry I was just grabbing water, I’m coming right back. Besides, she’s fine. Honestly, she can handle it if she gets knocked around a bit. She’s tough.”
Twins’ Mom: “No– SHE just hurt Charlie! She’s playing too rough!”
Me (looks at Charlie, who is crying): “Oh my god! I am so so SO sorry!!!”
That your kid’s such a pussy.
The nanny of a kid I barely know in Nora’s music class approaches me.
Nanny: “Hi Nora’s Mom! Spencer is having a birthday party next Thursday at Gymboree. It’s in the afternoon. Can Nora come?”
Me: “Oh– yes, that’s perfect! Nora’s with her nanny in the afternoons, and they’re always looking to meet new people, so that will work out great! I’ll give my nanny the information and I know she’ll be more than happy to bring Nora to the party.”
Nanny: “Great, I’m so glad Nora can come!”
Me: “Of COURSE! She looooooooves parties! Thanks so much for including her!”
Nanny (looking at phone calendar): “Oh wait sorry, I mixed up the time– the party is not in the afternoon, it’s in the morning. So YOU can bring Nora.”
After class at the kiddie gym:
Other Mom (to me): “Well that was a fun class!”
Me: “I know, I agree! And I’m so glad that [your kid] and Nora are really becoming friends now.”
Other Mom: “Me too! And speaking of, I think it’s time we actually learn each other’s names!”
Me: “Oh! Ha, yes, we should– I’m Emily.”
Other Mom: “Nice to ACTUALLY meet you! I’m Cheryl.”
I fucking know, Cheryl. That’s why I’ve greeted you with “Good morning Cheryl!” every day for the past 3 months.
A random mom at the kiddie gym sees that Nora is using a pacifier in the stroller.
Random Mom: “I just started weaning my kid off his pacifier. It’s been brutal.”
Me: “Yes– we’ve been weaning her off too! It’s so hard. She whines the entire time she’s in the stroller, but I try to ignore it. Now I only give her the pacifier if there’s a REALLY good reason to.”
Random Mom: “So what’s today’s reason?”
Me: “I just can’t.”
Yesterday, around 5:50pm, I’m sitting on the couch in my apartment lobby, on my phone:
Doorman: “Let me guess– your nanny gets off at 6?”
Me: “Excuse me?”
Doorman: “I’ve noticed you usually get home around 5:30 and then sit on the lobby couch until about 5:58.”
Me (laughing): “Ok, I know what you’re implying– but I’m not avoiding my kid! It’s just that I have work emails to send, and I’m better off doing it now rather than trying to do it in the apartment. Too many distractions. Nothing ever gets done.”
Doorman: “I see.”
Me: “It’s actually annoying to have to send all these emails, because honestly I just want to go up there right away and squeeze her.”
Doorman: “Well, don’t let me interrupt. Get back to that email.”
Me: “Thank you.”
My phone screen:
— Nora, when she sees wine.
I’m tutoring a middle schooler for an important test she will take at the end of the year. She is super anxious about it, so I promise her I will have her fully prepared.
Kid: “Ok but what if you just, like, up and die before the test? THEN WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO?!”
Me: “Ok, well. I certainly do not plan to die this year. But if I did– which I won’t– well, I suppose you could start by feeling sad about the sudden and tragic loss of your dear tutor and friend.”
Kid: “Oh– right, yes. OF COURSE. Sorry. Of course I’d feel sad.”
Kid: “But like, AFTER that…?”