The Untranquility of Three by Vivienne Lynge

Good Morning, Scribblers.  Vivienne Lynge here.  Does this every happen to you?  You wake at five minutes before the sun crests the horizon because your son, Minx, is poking you with a finger to find him dry jammies?  Then 30 seconds after you fall back to sleep, Jester comes along and needs the same thing.  Then at the unGodly Saturday morning hour of 6:00am, you wake to Princess Second Grader screaming that she wished Minx and Jester were never born…

Ahhhh, parenting.  Good times.  Why oh why would anyone willingly have three children?  It seems to be a horrible idea.  I think children should just arrive in even numbers.  I don’t know if this is true for everyone, but when I have two children (if one is at the coveted G-Mom’s house) things are much quieter.  Of course, it’s usually Princess Second Grader who goes to G-Mom’s, and she’s a girl.  Quite loud.  And a bit bossy.  napoleonI sometimes call her Napoleon.  To her face, even.  She hasn’t studied enough history to realize the implication…yet.  I look forward to that day in high school or whenever when she comes home and says, “Dude – that Napoleon guy wasn’t very nice.  Why do you call me that.”   Is it wrong for me to dream about that moment?

Lest we forget, Jester and Minx are boys.  Even though we are a rabidly anti-gun household (I won’t even allow squirt guns – it’s not the water I object to, it’s the distribution device.  They can dump all water and stuff on each other all they want – just no gun!) these little fellows make a gun out of everything!  Sticks, pencils, train tracks.  Sometimes they add extra train tracks to make some kind of riffle thingy.  And then site down the barrel.  How do they even know about that?  They have seen exactly two movies with guns in them, The Incredibles and Wall-E.  Ok, and Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back – hey it was 100 degrees here last summer and I needed to imprison them…I mean keep them…in the basement where it was cool.  The VCR is in the basement and the VHS selection is very thin these days.  I couldn’t face Thomas the Train again.  If you’re a mom, you’ve been there.

So they’ve seen 4 movies with guns but honestly, they were making things into guns long before they ever saw those.  How do I stop it?  All the old guard moms in my family (my mom, my aunts etc) say not to worry about it – their kids all played with guns (cap guns and air rifles mostly) and turned out fine.  Then there’s the other side of things where two kids were suspended from elementary school for playing soldier with each other when one’s father was a US Marine!  They weren’t threatening anyone – they were PLAYING!

Lordy-be…Princess Second Grader is bugging me again…something about Minx not feeding blueberries to a plastic snake, only to the actual children.  These kids have a lot of rules…no wonder they’re always fighting.  Where was I?  Oh yes…Society today has so many conflicting expectations…let children play and be children…but not too creatively lest we have to punish them for role playing.  Ahhh, what’s a mom to do?  Immerse herself in romance, of course.  When I can find the time.

Today’s secret: if at all possible, don’t have 3 children.  Have 4 or 2 or 6.  Not 3…I gotta go…Minx seems to have thrown a cardboard brick at PSG and she’s expecting some kind of consequence.  I’d better get in there before she takes matters into her own hands.  She might find an actual brick and throw it back…


2 thoughts on “The Untranquility of Three by Vivienne Lynge”

  1. Gosh, I remember those days fondly–partly because they were full of great moments amid the chaos, and partly because they are over, LOL. I had two boys, but as a mostly single parent, it seemed like I was outnumbered and out gunned most of the time. Speaking of guns…don’t worry about it. They are part of our society and I think the more you try to make anything taboo with kids, the more attractive it becomes. They obviously know your stance on the gun issue so making it a big deal at this point will only give them another weapon to use against you (pardon the pun) when they want to drive you crazy. Good luck over the summer. Shall I send handcuffs and duct tape in a care package? Sorry…that sounded way creepier than intended.

  2. I know you have special concerns about your boys and guns, but honestly, I would keep it very low key. Either let them have their fun (you have to admire their creativity!) or gently redirect them to some other kind of play. Now that they are in the school system you will have increasingly less control over them and none over their classmates, and at some point you need to trust that you’ve done a good enough job at home that they will be able to make responsible choices. Another thing to think about is whether you are sending mixed messages–policeman and soldiers are their friends and keep them safe, and yet they carry guns, which are “bad.” As for the Princess, send her to grandma’s as often as possible!

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