Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Dissonant language

For the second night in a row M had to work late and it was girls' night as we went into our evening routines. L was finishing her cubed banana in the high chair and E was finishing her olives in a kitchen chair and I had my head inside the dryer, trying to find L's pajamas.

The no-Daddy routine goes: L's dinner, L's diaper and pajamas, E to couch for special treat cartoons (thank you, Noggin, for your steady stream of Dora and Diego in the 7:00 hour), L upstairs for one last feeding and sleep. Once L is asleep, E's TV goes off, E's dinner, E's bedtime routine. It's a science. It's a big, clunking, clanking, bumpy science that whose rules dictate I don't change out of my work clothes or eat until sometime after 9, but it's a science.

The with-Daddy routine goes: L's dinner, discussion regarding which parent takes L upstairs and which plays with E, with all subsequent decisions based on that first one - which parent is on which floor with which child. So that discussion is critical; it lays the foundation for the entire evening.

But it was a night of no-Daddy routine. E loves to be a helper, and especially so when it's just the girls. She picked L's bib for dinner, and got her diaper for her last change of the night. I was going to go into auto-pilot and establish E on the couch so I could take L upstairs, but E wanted to follow the with-Daddy transcript. She's heard M's words many times before, and she repeated them nearly verbatim:

Should we make a bottle? Or are you going to go upstairs and boob her? Pin It