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Littlest Laptop User

March 19, 2012

The vast majority of the time I don’t bring work home.  I am lucky to work in a job where I am able to accomplish everything I need to do, for the most part, in my normal work week.  This week, however, I have spent half of my time in training sessions, and it became more of a necessity in the middle of the week to put in a few hours at night.  After dinner and bathtime, I got the girls set up on either side of me in their adorable little fuzzy bathrobes, and I proceeded to rediscover how much more fun it is to work when two adorable toddlers are cuddled up to you on either side.

I bought the robes in response to their (quite normal) phase when they wanted to run around in the buff after bathtime and not put on their pajamas.  So rather than do endless battles on a nightly basis, I picked up two pink and white plaid microfiber robes which look absolutely adorable on them.  They look like strange little miniature adults.  Now the choice is pajamas or robes, and they always happily choose the robes.  We cuddled up on the couch and I flipped on a movie so they could sit and relax and I could attempt to get some work done.  A large part of the reason that I have previously tried my hardest to avoid putting in any after hours work was because their nonexistent attention spans made it impossible to get anything done until after they had gone to bed.  But now we have reached the point where they can almost last an entire movie.  This has become a miraculous transformation in my life.  Not just because they can sit through a movie but also because this expanded attention span has also carried over into other areas of play and we no longer flit from toy to toy like deranged hummingbirds.

About a quarter of the way into the movie my littlest, Abby, suddenly bolts upright and declares that she wants her “tap-top.”  To be perfectly honest, it actually took her saying it a few more times before I pieced together that she was trying to say “laptop,” and even then I couldn’t figure out what she was talking about.  So in one of those moments in parenthood you are loathe to admit to, I simply said, “OK, honey” and nodded as though I actually knew what she was talking about.  She bounced off the couch (literally-she’s a very energetic child) and ran over to the bookshelves where we keep most of their living room toys, pulled out a big black box from one of the cubbies, and pulled out her “tap-top.”  Aha!  Finally the mystery was made clear–she wanted her little play “laptop” that had numbers and letters and made sounds and played games.  It was one of those marvels of toy engineering that I am in awe of, somewhat strangely jealous of, and also a little afraid of.  I seem as unable to resist buying some of these things as any other parent, and yet I instinctively seem to feel that they are a bad idea at their age.  Every time I see them I get a picture in my head of teenagers sitting in a room together texting because they have lost the ability to truly communicate.  Probably a total fiction, but there it is in my head anyways.  I’m torn by the desire to help them understand technology for the benefit of their futures, and yet reluctant to let them access it too quickly.  I am secretly afraid it will stunt their imaginations and creativity.  A large part of me still thinks that the best toy on earth is a stick and some dirt.

Adorable as ever, my little one runs back, bouncing with the joy her idea has brought her.  She struggles to climb up on the couch still clutching her “tap-top” in two hands so I hoist her up with one arm and a foot under her for leverage.  She wiggles into place, pulls open her toy and proudly announces that she is “workin on my tap-top, too, mama!”  Oh, if only my phone wasn’t charging in the other room and I could take a picture in this moment!  Not that the camera could capture the true essence of her adorable proclamation.  And I’m also struck by a momentary panic created by her desire to imitate me.  I know there will be time aplenty for her to discover all of my faults–real or perceived–and I should enjoy this moment, but I am still struck by a sense of the profound responsibility implied here.  My husband would probably say that I think too much, but I prefer to remind myself of the importance of striving to be worth imitating.

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From → Motherhood

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