We enrolled Harper at a daycare/preschool associated with Ball State University. (Yep, she’s in college at the age of 2.) Two weeks ago I attended the school’s orientation for parents while Annie was at home with the kids.
The director of the program asked that all the parents introduce themselves, and share an interesting tidbit about their child. I was sitting in the front row on a seat that was about 6″ off the ground — like a giant sitting in munchkin land. She called on me first.
“I’m Kelsey Timmeran. My daughter’s name is Harper. She’s two…” and this is where I needed to say something interesting about Harper. I don’t like intro situations like this. In fact, sometimes my face will get red and I’ll stumble and mumble a bit, which doesn’t make sense because I’m completely comfortable addressing crowds of a few thousand. My mind wandered for something and landed on of all things this: “…and she pooped on the potty today!”
The parents broke into applause. If you want to win over the hearts and minds of parents with young kids, turn the conversation to poop. It works every time.
The introductions continued.
“I’m so and so and my daughter can do sign.”
Sign? Surely this woman meant that her daughter signs that she doesn’t like food by spitting it out, or that she has to go potty by holding herself.
“I’m so and so and my daughter also does sign language.”
Give me a break.
“I’m so and so and my daughter speaks Swedish, Spanish, English, and signs.”
What?!?! is this some kind of contest? I specifically remember a grade school one-up contest I had with my friends, which was more mature than what was happening here among the parents. Then, our contest was about whose father’s farts stunk the worst. I believe this was a precursor to “your mama” contests. “My daddy’s farts stink so bad…” Well you get the idea.
Harper has pooped in the potty twice. When she does I feel like we just reached the summit of Mt. Everest. But most of the time she waits to drop her load after we put her in a diaper at nap time. As soon as we walk into her stink-filled room she demands, “Change my diaper. I pooped!” During the changing process she’ll ask to see her handiwork. Sometimes I’ll humor her. She’ll comment on the size and then say, “Eww…that is very, very gross!”
To me, she is a genius! Just look how she uses adverbs already to describe her poop. She’s also hilarious and like the cutest kid ever!
But, the difference between me and the “my daughter speaks four languages” parents is that I recognize that others might not feel the same way as me about my kid. The report that my daughter pooped in the toilet won applause, the report that little Susie (not her name) is a flippin’ genius won eye rolls.
I’ve always thought the “My Kid Can Beat Up Your Honor Student” bumper stickers were ridiculous, but after listening to parents that began teaching their children Latin in the womb, I can see the appeal.