Today, my two-year-old asked for help with his wooden train tracks. His trains were upstairs, his train tracks were downstairs, and he preferred relocating the relatively large, intricately linked and somewhat difficult to move rails to transporting the things on wheels.
Cool. It’s a day, man, and we gotta live it however we gotta live it. Happy to be of service if you’re gonna play and not scream.
So I went downstairs and brought the train tracks up.
When I arrived at the new train station, he said, “You good helper, Mommy. Good helper.”
And I got a little weepy.
Because nobody in six and a half years has told me that I’m a good helper. Or if they did, they used a regular, grown-up voice and verbs in their sentence so I didn’t completely internalize what they were saying. Either way, it felt really, *really* good to be noticed.
So, either I need a job with regular performance reviews again, or I need to hear these wonderful children when they thank me. We all know the appreciation in this job is at best implied and at worst deferred until they have kids of their own and call, weeping with the exhaustion and overwhelming terror of having a newborn, toddler, preschooler, or teenager to apologize for what shits they were as kids and to express their awe at what great parents we were to tolerate them.
So I’ll take my “good helper” kudos and chalk up my points for teaching him to ask for help, appreciate it, and articulate his feelings. Plus bonus stickers for actually *being* a good helper.
Now, where do I turn in these tickets for prizes?