June 2, 2021

NOPE, THAT'S MY ANSWER - a response the yearbook staff wasn't expecting

In my never ending potty training process, William is STILL refusing to leave the family room to walk to the bathroom. If by chance I don't make eye contact with him, he paces and winces in discomfort. I have tried things like:  IF YOU HAVE TO GO, JUST WALK. I've assured him that only the babies need to stay in the family room:  BIG BOYS CAN WALK IN THE KITCHEN. IF YOU HAVE TO GO TO THE BATHROOM, JUST WALK. JUST WALK. 

Once there, he can undress himself waist down and get on the potty. He never has accidents. It's just GETTING THERE. Tonight, he exited the family room three times in as many minutes while I was cooking dinner to hand me a tissue that he allegedly used to wipe his nose, even though he doesn't have a cold. 

Me (in my head, or to my children):  Why can he wander out of the room randomly EXCEPT when he needs to? 

A few weeks ago, we were trying to get him to feel more comfortable leaving the family room. He arrived crying and some of my kids were sleeping, so I told him to stay in the mudroom until he was done crying. He settles down in less than a minute usually. He left the mudroom when he stopped crying. He was in the kitchen, where Mini was eating breakfast. We all agreed to make no sudden movements. "Let's see what he does." 

He wandered over to where Mini was sitting at the table. He stood there like a statue for a solid 5 minutes or more - STARING at the side of her face. 

After a while, Mini raised her hand. I called on her, 'Yes, Mini?':  


I died. She and I were trying not to deter him from his rare free-to-roam moment, but we were shaking with laughter. It was beyond hilarious. Other than the here's-my-tissue incident and the Mini stare down, he really refuses to leave the family room. 

In a few weeks, Mini accepts the role as his babysitter (still in my house, but I can take a backseat) for the summer. Let the countdown begin.

I know you remember Mini practice driving while wearing her hair-drying twisty turban during the pandemic. The girl really doesn't care what anyone thinks. Still, she'd prefer not to be stared at by a 2.5 year old for no apparent reason.

Tank graduated Monday night, more on that later. When we walked up to the football field, I looked down at my toenails in my sandals. The days leading up to graduation were light-speed, record-breaking busy. Toenails were not a priority. "I guess I should've re-done my toes," I muttered. 

I snapped a photo of this poster at a school not
long ago and I've been waiting for a good time
 to include it in a post. This sums it up.
Love this message, plus KERMIT is so cute.
Mini:  Why? I will not bother. I just don't see the point. (She wasn't wrong - we were sitting in the bleachers of a football field. I had on a cute dress, no one would notice my partially chipped nails).  

Mini just doesn't care to conform. She cares little what anyone thinks, and I think that's awesome. I wish I could go back to my high school self and whisper:  IT DOESN'T MATTER WHAT THEY THINK. In truth, I really did do my own thing and didn't care MUCH about the opinion of others, but there were times when I worried a bit or wondered what people thought of me. Is it possible NOT to think that way in high school? Anyway . . . 

The kids got their yearbooks the other day. Mini rolled her eyes about someone on the yearbook staff.

Mini:  So, they reached out to me and asked me if I'd give them a quote. They asked me what I typically thought about when I was playing tennis. I said I usually think about what I'm going to eat - like after practice, or I think about what's for dinner or something. So, they texted me back and asked me to change my answer, like maybe I didn't understand the question. I texted back:  NOPE. THAT'S MY ANSWER.

She then flipped to the tennis pages of the yearbook where her quote appears. She showed me her quote:  We asked Mini Shenanigan what she thinks about when she's playing tennis, she said "I THINK ABOUT WHAT I AM GOING TO EAT." Then she instructed me to read the other tennis player quotes - all very relevant to tennis. 

We cried laughing. So funny. 

I guess I'm the kind of mom who is proud of my quirky kid. I'm good with her being who she is. Apparently, she's hungry. 


Martha said...

I think Mini rocks! I love that she doesn't care what anyone thinks, pretty amazing at her age. You've done a good job. :)

Nicole MacPherson said...

I LOVE HER!!! What a great attitude. I think about what I'm going to eat, I love it so much. That Kermit poster is fantastic too; love me some Kermit. Potty training is the wooooooorst, that is one funny little guy though!

Ernie said...

Martha- I wonder if her 'who-gives' approach is partially due to having 3 older brothers. Not a lot of focus on neatness and appearances. More of a just-rolled-outta-bed attitude. I had 2 older sisters who were constantly telling me to comb my hair or stop taking up so much space in a store . . . leaning, stretching, etc.

Mini and I have had our chuckles over the girls who look worried about a hair out of place, etc. They just LOOK uncomfortable.

Ernie said...

Nicole- Yes, Mini is a piece of work. She really is her own person. Her hair is SO amazing. I have to stop myself from begging her to show it off vs the messy bun. I'm just jealous. The yearbook quote is hilarious. Tank is billed as our funny kid but Mini is also one heck of a humorous individual.

Anonymous said...

That is hilarious, what an awesome thing for a teen girl to feel so comfortable just being herself. My freshman year in high school I got asked to give a quote for the yearbook about what I liked about being on swim team. The quote next to my picture is “look at these big muscles!” And in relation to Mini, the award my coach gave me at the end of the season was something about food, along with a pack of snacks. Because, I too, was always asking when we were going to eat or listing off all of the things I was craving to have after practice. Swimming laps for hours is hard work!

Kari said...

I think about what I'm going to eat all the time too. I feel like she and I would get along. Auntie Bitches needs to come to take her to lunch. :)

Charlie said...

I love that your daughter is so happy in her own skin and doesn’t feel the need to conform. I wish my daughter had a bit of that, because it makes life so much harder when you are worrying what others think all the time

Pat Birnie said...

I LOVE her! She is exactly what I wish I’d been in high school instead of confirming and trying to fit in. The exception is that I was, and still am, always thinking about what I’m going to eat. That little guy is hilarious with the staring.

Beth Cotell said...

Mini is awesome! And Peter had a quote in the yearbook and after he read it he said, "Nope! I said part of that but they totally added the rest!" Guess they thought he didn't say enough?!

Ernie said...

AM - I love your yearbook quote. Hilarious. My kids were on swim team for years - talk huge appetites. They were bottomless pits. I was what I consider a 'floater' in high school - I bopped around to different groups and was welcome to hang out with most anyone. I always had my close group of friends. I didn't take myself too seriously though. Mini is very like that - but she takes it to a whole other level. Master of the WHO CARES approach. She does care more about grades than I ever did.

Ernie said...

Kari - I don't know if it is because of celiac, but I constantly plan out my next food item. Like literally. It's exhausting, but I never want to run out of options. You and Mini would definitely enjoy a lunch outing.

Ernie said...

Charlie - Back in normal times I would watch kids walk into the varsity basketball games at the high school and you just KNEW who was worried about what everyone was thinking. Mini was in junior high and I pointed out to her how the girls all showed up wearing EXACTLY the same thing. Black leggings, white addidas shoes, and a crop top. I was like MINI, THESE GIRLS ARE UNORIGINAL. It was mind blowing. I do have to bite my tongue at times because the just-rolled-out-of-bed look sometimes makes me cringe.

Ernie said...

Pat - I wish we could bottle her approach. Who wouldn't buy that for their teen daughter? Curly is more into fashion and frets over her appearance a bit more, so I fear for her high school days. She's also pretty confident though, so I think it will be fine. Years ago, Mini told me WE'RE GONNA HAVE TROUBLE WITH THIS ONE (in regards to Curly). That's just because Curly has an interest in makeup and accessories and shoes . . . not bad, just different from Mini's bedhead is cool lifestyle. They are all different. Tring so hard to let them be the way they want to be, although I have begun to insist that Reg showers after basketball vs waiting until bed. If he hangs with friends after playing sports he does NOT get that his odor is downright offensive. SHOWER NOW, NOT LATER - is my rule with him.

Oh this little guy. He is an odd duck. I suspect he has something going on and I wish his parents would have him evaluated so I could get some idea of how I'm supposed to work with him. They aren't doing him any favors pretending that his lack of communication is the norm. He doesn't come up with things to say - only repeats, at nauseum. NAUSEUM.

Ernie said...

Beth - Oh, a yearbook staff taking liberties at quotes? Yikes. She and I laughed so hard. All of her tennis friends said very typical competitive things. Mini told me she's only competitive at board games. I guess that's true. You don't want to play Scrabble with her.

Bibliomama said...

Good for Mini. Eve and her friends are way better at giving zero fucks than I ever was. They delight in taking ugly pictures of themselves and posting them. They care more about being funny than about being pretty or popular.
One of Angus's friend's yearbook quote was a lengthy paean to frozen pizza. His mom was mad at him but I thought it was hilarious and memorable.

Ernie said...

Ali- That sums up Mini pretty well, she cares more about being funny for sure. I love a humorous yearbook quote.

Busy Bee Suz said...

In my next life, I want to be MINI! Please God, if you're reading this, help me out!

The I'm uncomfortable line had me in stitches. Maybe little Will will turn a corner this summer? And by corner, I mean the family room exit.

But really, high school was such a nightmare for me; I had zero confidence in myself, so she is my hero.

I'm so glad she had them put that in the yearbook---she's making history being herself.

Busy Bee Suz said...

Oh and I love the Kermit quote/poster! Brilliant.

Ernie said...

Suz - Ha, Mini's who-care approach is very cool. It would be great if we could get her to go viral for demonstrating this cool way to live, because so many young girls would benefit from realizing that it can be done. The yearbook quote was so funny.

I can't remember if I ever had a kid raise their hand in my home and wait to be called on. "I'm uncomfortable" killed me. We laughed till we cried. William's mom just told me that she might put him in preschool in the fall on the days his mom watches him (I'm not loading all my littles up to drop off at preschool). She is on the fence because she said 'Even though he doesn't talk much, he just knows so much like his colors.' I missed my opening there. Caught off guard. I should've said 'Rainman knows so much too.' I wouldn't have said THAT, but maybe 'Have you considered getting him evaluated?' He would probably benefit from some early intervention. I know I would benefit from some suggestions on how to work with him. Good grief. Tank had an 80% speech delay, and we had him evaluated. It's what you do. He qualified for speech therapy. William doesn't need speech, but it'd be nice if he came with some instructions.

Busy Bee Suz said...

I agree, they should have him evaluated. I would think even if he was the first born, you'd know he's a bit behind.