Friday, September 26, 2008

Journey of Three Flights of Steps

Our old pediatrician was a bitch, who made one too many rude comments about the shape of my sons' heads. (For the record, their heads are perfect--even the neurosurgeon she referred us to said so. However, to paraphrase my mother, "I think there's something wrong with HER [the pediatrician's] head.")

Our new pediatrician is well worth the three flights of subway steps it takes to get to her. For the uninitiated, the New York subway system involves many many flights of steep stairs. There is no better sensitivity training for those who lack sympathy for the disabled. Because I had sex one Tuesday morning (what seems like) several years ago, it is now my lot in life to scale these steps with not one but TWO approaching-thirty-pounds each children, a stroller heavier than a Mini Cooper, and all their attendant toddler gear. This is actually a physical impossibility for one person. Therefore, I never go anywhere beyond walking distance with the two children unless I have someone else with me. And I usually have to wind up treating that person to lunch, just so I'm not blacklisted from the friendship pool after putting that person through such a grueling workout.

Today, I was lucky: only one son had succumbed to horrible diaper rash, so I was able to swing it on my own. The poor kid must take after his clotrimazole-stockpiling mother. When the recommended regimen of Bacitracin failed to do the trick, we headed back for a script for something stronger, more difficult to procure, and more expensive.

The pediatrician's office is located in a posh neighborhood. An incredibly beautiful posh neighborhood. I always feel a little bit inadequate when I walk through there, because I don't push a Bugaboo and wear jeans from Old Navy. Well, actually from Old Navy via the secondhand store, because I'd rather spend my money on cheese. But I digress.

Anyway, the pediatrician's office is a veritable United Nations of different languages. On the last visit, I conversed in Italian with a fellow twin parent. This visit, there were four languages going in the waiting room: regular American English, British English, Spanish, and French. What all the parents had in common was an extraordinary lack of sleep and a deep sense of regret that we hadn't ourselves invented Elmo and copyrighted him long ago.

We left with our prescription, a lollipop, and inspiration for an actual blog post. A good morning was had by all.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Accidental Has-Been

More than a decade ago, I had a really fun summer job that involved attending black-tie events with celebrities.

Now, on a good day, I get to attend the shower.

A little less than a decade ago, I stood in bright, shiny collegiate graduation gear while members of an esteemed committee taught me a secret handshake.

Within the past few weeks, one of my sons quickly squatted in the bathtub, grunted, and then handed--yes, HANDED--me a solid, perfectly-formed turd. "Rock," he pronounced.

Lines are forming around my eyes almost as quickly as Italian vocabulary words are fleeing my brain.

Am I a shell of my former self, or am I something new entirely?

Which way is really "it"?

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Mamalujo to the Rescue

A while back, I wrote about how my twin sons fought bitterly over possession of a bright round plastic apple, the Happy Apple. I was forced to confiscate said apple and save it for emergencies, such as a diaper-change bribe or a sick-child doctor visit. This was a huge pity, as the Apple, true to its name, made me happy, and ownership of the tempting Apple was more for me than my children.

The mighty Mamalujo to the rescue! For those of you unfortunate enough to be unfamiliar with his work, please check out his blog immediately. He is that rare combination of Professional Smart Guy and Good Soul. His current post, "Dear Daughter," is particularly touching.

Mamalujo immediately announced that he had that most elusive of objects, a spare Happy Apple, and then he NEATLY PACKED IT UP AND SENT IT TO ME. Done.

Mamalujo, do you know how happy you have made my children? Do you know how happy you have made my husband and me? Now, at dinnertime, instead of hearing two toddlers banging their sippy cups against their food trays and screaming, we hear choruses of "Apple. Apple!" and the toy's trademark soft, gentle chime. You have restored peace to the Trattoria Breve, and we thank you for it.