Wednesday, April 2, 2008

They say a light rain is coming tonight, with no danger of flash flooding or mudslides in the county. Fine by me, I say. Seems to me every man, woman, weed, and waterbug appreciates a nice light rain in Southern California. Or should.

I banged myself up pretty good yesterday. Banged up the current job, too. I assured the customer I would fix it. "Yes. You will," they said. I'm always tempted to say things like, "Oh, it comes like that! Happens in shipping sometimes!" But no. That's not the kind of business I was put on this planet to run. The customer didn't notice the blood dripping off my hand. When they left, I went out to the truck to get a bandage. I'll go back today and give it my best shot. Such is life.

The Little Ditchman awoke screaming in the middle of the night. Again. She settles down fairly quick when you go in to console her. I went in some time later, it was the middle of the night, and found her just laying there half awake. The two-year-old couldn't get back to sleep. Happens to me sometimes, and I'm all of thirty-eight. Made me sad to see a kid with insomnia, for who knows what horrors keep her up. No doubt the Little Einsteins had crashed Rocket in Egypt and were unable to escape Nile Crocodile. Or picture Elmo with teeth, laughing maniacally in that high-pitched voice of his, mercilessly flushing Dorothy down the maw of a gargantuan toilet.

I looked down at her in the dark to see how open her eyes were and she saw that it was me and just stared back. I whispered, "Sweet dreams" and she whispered it back, "sweet dreams" and rolled over and laid there, staring sideways. It's the kind of thing that would otherwise make you worry, but it's two AM and you're tired and sore.

Today there is more screaming. It's not about anything in particular, I-don't-want-to-eat-this or I-don't-want-to-wear-that. She has been prone to outbursts lately, so I guess the terrible twos are really here. It was like watching a storm coming. It rains down and you think, "Is that it?" and then it rains harder and the winds come and you go, "Oh. That's it." And then the lightning and thunder hit and branches crack and fall out of trees. In the suburbs, water rises over the curb and takes down empty trash cans. Now, there's no mistaking it. Stay inside.

I suppose there's a certain amount of self-realization that comes at two that makes everything so unbearable. The kid thinks, The Big Folks are in charge but I have some influence over the situation. I'm going to scream until I get my way! But a good parent doesn't give in to the screaming. The lesson taught is that screaming to get what you want is a futile tactic.

Mommy had her head in her hands at the top of the stairs last night and I had to find it in me to take over, which was the hardest part of yesterday, in light of everything. God gets His way and you know that no amount of screaming will get you yours. But sometimes you just want to cry all the same.

A nice light cry.