I don’t believe in karma, and yet, as a mother, it’s impossible to deny that similar behaviors ripple throughout multiple members of our family, popping up when you least expect them and feeling, at times, a whole lot like poetic justice.


Case in point:

Della (the queen/empress/duchess and high priestess of saying, “Mama” multiple times and then following it up with either silence and/or repeating, “Uh, um, mmm, uh, um,” until you feel your soul shriveling up and dying a bit): “Mama?”

Me: “Hm?”

Della: “What’s that swirly water thing for?” (pointing at the whirlpool tub in our gym’s women’s locker room).

Me (distracted by the equally soul-shriveling process of trying to prevent a toddler from putting both legs in the same hole of her swimsuit…for the 12th time): “Uh.”

Della: “Mama?”

Me (while tugging spandex up over chubby toddler knees): “Hm?”

Della: “What’s the swirly water thing for?”

Me: “Um…” (still tugging and attempting to keep half-dressed toddler and myself from toppling over onto the potty in the miniscule stall that is the stage for our antics, while avoiding crushing toddler’s twin sister).

Della: “Mama!” Starting to sound annoyed. “I need to know. WHAT is the the swirly water thing for??”

Me (sanity hanging by a thread as I attempt to peel sticky toddler hands off one leg while balancing on the other leg and doing my best to drag a pudgy, sticky toddler hand through the correct bathing suit strap configuration while avoiding a dip in the toilet): “Um, well, ah. It’s… Um…”

Della (with a sigh of resignation): “Mama, you have too many ‘Um’s.'”

Hashtag: welcome to my world, Daughter.


And then there was that time when…

Simon–in a soothing tone to Della after she fell and rather spectacularly scraped and bloodied her knee: “Della. I did this one time, and Mama told me I had to take deep, calming breaths, and it would be better. And you know what? I did, and it was.”

(Funny, I don’t remember its happening quite like that)

Della, in high-pitched, machine gun yelps: “I can’t, I CAN’T, I CA-AAAAAAN’T. There’s bloooooooooood!!!!”

Simon, in a maddening, patronizing tone: “Just don’t think about it. It will get better. Take deeeeeeeep breaths, in through your nose and out through your mouth. There you go. Just like Mama when she has to get a baby out.”



Ever feel like what goes around comes right back around in your house too?

One Comment

  1. Catching up on all your posts, and this one had my laughing out loud. My two girls are the twins’ age and Theo’s age. My oldest, Ellie, got in the really bad habit of asking “Why?” and “Today or Tomorrow?” after everything. So one day when she told me something, I proceeded to ask her why several times, and threw in a few “today or tomorrow?” questions. After about three minutes, she threw a blanket on her head and gave a huge laugh/sigh and said, “Stop asking that”. It was all in good fun, and she has slightly decreased her constant questioning.

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