Daddy went off to work early this morning after I threw my half awake bitchy ball at him, which landed squarely in the middle of his rested, perky, good morning forehead. I really needed a few minutes this a.m. to open my eyes and not speak to anyone or anything. Today would have been a nice day to have the “his” and “hers” bathroom sinks I so lovingly criticize when at a rich friend’s house. Add separate toilets and toilet paper holders and this mommy loves you long time.
When I went into Otto’s room he was standing up holding his bedtime pals Bundy and Dun Dun and waiting for me to take him out of the crib and clean his nether regions, which I did with unbridled enthusiasm and precision. We then went down stairs where I proceeded to make him a “Daddy’s Pasta” frittata from scratch. There was no cold pasta or cooked zucchini so I had to kill some time with laundry and dishwasher unloading while it all sautéed and boiled. Otto had specifically requested this dish this morning after I asked him three times what he wanted for breakfast. Like a good mommy slave driven to any task by the cuteness and unending demands of her tiny five star general child, I whipped up the feast, timing perfectly the toast, the pan, the juice refill, the bib set up and the table setting. Just as I put the frittata in the broiler for the final bake and sizzle, I smelled what all of us parents know as the shitting time bomb.
I didn’t want to burn anything and ruin a good, hot meal but at the same time I could not allow Otto to sit on a clump of his own excrement while I tried to enjoy my first meal of the day. We ran upstairs and surprisingly took care of the cow patty in record time. I have a germ issue and have to immediately bag and toss every poop that comes out of Otto. I cannot tolerate his diaper pail filled with a mountain of stinky pebbles but can somehow put up with a garbage bag of urine filled bricks that together in an enclosed space for long enough, gather the strength and odor of Zeus’s private urinal. My obsession with poop always adds time to the changing ritual but today; I was determined to salvage the frittata.
We returned to the breakfast table where the food was still hot, sat down with clean hands and empty bellies and I proceeded to eat my share of the fabulous egg dish while Otto pulled it apart, literally and figuratively, insulting my use of ham, eggs and cheese. He then ate only three zucchini pieces, glared at me and demanded to be released from his prison chair after all my hard work and mental strategizing.
This rejection of my food, of the fifteen minutes of multitasking, of chopping and breaking and flipping and frying made my anus curl into the shape of a Crazy Straw. Why do I get so bent when he chooses not eat? What do I care if he is on hunger strike half the day and only wants apple sauce and left cheek kisses? “He’ll eat when he’s hungry”, all the-know-it all moms say. I try to convince myself that he can survive a few hours without a substantial amount of protein and carbohydrates. I tally up the amount of juice to water ratio he has sucked down, hoping that his natural sugar index has not reached the levels of, say, a crack head with a taste for Mountain Dew and Suzy Q’s or a Beverly Hills hausfrau with a strict diet of Mike and Ike’s, Diet Coke in the can and central air conditioning.
I know he will eat like a pig the next meal or maybe even the one after that. But I will still suffer the entire day thinking my only child is withering away to nothing, hates my cooking and I only have one sink to spit in.