Snooping Has It's Own Rewards

I have written before how toilet training wreaks havoc on a parent's soul and challenges a grown up like no other singular parental event except for maybe finding out your 14 year old child not only stole your car but fornicated with the neigbour's 13 year old and then dealt weed to their hoodlum friends out of the back seat .

Not that I'd know anything about that. Or am basing that sentence on any particular family member. *Cough, cough*Cousin*Cough, cough.*

But while remembering the time my son tried finger painting the walls with his own poo and then licked the tasty goo off his wee fingers, I forgot about yet another parental challenge that can easily turn the most civilized, adept parent into a whacked out blob of despair.

That would be the challenge of the babysitter. The trouble of finding a good one. Or rather, when you paid exorbitant amounts for tickets to a concert you had to beg your husband to attend, (and by beg I mean get really bendy in the bedroom), booked the sitter weeks in advance, bought a new outfit, had your hair cut and colored for the first time since you squeezed a small person out of your pink parts and even took the time to shave your bush legs in the hopes of a romantic interlude in the backseat of your minivan in the last row of the parking lot while trying to recapture your fleeting youth with the man you promised to wake up to every damn morning for the rest of your life.

ONLY to get a phone call an hour before departure time to find out your sitter is bagging out on you because that really cute boy in grade 12 finally noticed me and asked me out and he has really cool tattoos and his own truck and I think he may be the one and I'm really sorry but I'll totally make it up to you next time if I'm not knocked up with his love child or stuck in a nunnery which is a real possibility if my dad ever finds out I'm going out with a boy who has a shiny silver hoop stuck through the base of his love nuts.

Ya. That type of babysitting challenge. Thank heavens I live in the sticks and refuse to leave my house make contact with the outside world thereby relying on fruitcakes known as teenaged babysitters.

So when my best friend called in a panic and in desperate need of a sitter, I did what any loving and generous best friend would do. I told her to call her inlaws. Then I offered her my inlaws. Any damn thing to have to avoid sitting for three children under the age of three, for an entire evening.

When my loving and gentle best friend snarled and put the fear of God into me gently reminded me of all the times she stepped in and saved my arse, there was nothing I could do but face the fact I was bound to be watching a lot of Disney movies for the next eight hours while wiping a lot of shitty asses.

After seeing my friends off (while silently hoping they would miss their children so much they would cut the evening short and rush back) and wishing them a good time, I looked around and found six beady little eyes staring back at me. Like little jackals circling in for the kill.

Time for nap, I thought to myself, even though I knew they just got up from a nap. Oh well, they'd be well rested for all that waking up in the middle of the night they like to do, I thought to myself. I'm such a considerate friend.

After getting a crash course in what it's like to parent small people who do more than drool and play with spoons, I remembered why it is I want to parent a handicapped child and not adopt a healthy child.

Handicapped kids don't unravel whole rolls of toilet paper and giggle like little mad men when I cuss at them while I stoop over to wind it back up as their siblings use this time to get into mom's makeup and paint the walls with it.

Handicapped kids don't throw spaghetti on the floor at supper time while demanding chocolate pudding and then shriek (with a shrill voice louder than an air horn and twice as annoying) about how life is not fair and how I suck.

Handicapped kids don't insist on endless amounts piggy back rides while they slowly choke the life out of you by crushing your windpipe and try to rip off your ears at the same time.

Ya. I suddenly remembered why I love handicapped kids so much.

When I had my fill of being abused by demons who resemble little people playing the favorite aunty, I drugged the little buggers with Gravol sent them to bed.

I'm kidding. I would never administer medication to make children sleep like the dead.

He he.

But with hours still stretched out before my friends would arrive to set me free and hand back my sanity I had to figure out something to do. I had no computer and their television satellite wasn't working. I could either watch Dora the Explorer over and over again, or I could snoop.

Guess what I chose to do?

Since this is my best friend, and I happen to know just how kinky she is, I knew what drawers to avoid. I do not need to have the mental image of padded handcuffs and an extra large sized bottle of lube in my head when I think of her.

So I sat down in her office and started pulling out photo albums. And laughed my ass off. Boy have I had some bad haircuts through the years.

Just as I was flipping through the pages of the umpteenth album, a photo caught my eye.

It was my Bug. Waving hello. In a photo I had never before seen. My breath caught in my chest and I just sat there dumbfounded. Time literally stood still and I could hear the rush of my blood humming through my body. As I started flipping through more pages, I found even more little nuggets of heaven to remind me of my life as Bug's mom.

Hi Mom! You found me! Look! I can clap like a trained seal!

There is very little I have left of my son. He never told me he loved me with his words. I don't know what his favorite colour might have been. There was so much left unsaid when he passed. So much to learn about him. The only thing I really have of him now, the only thing to remind me he actually existed and wasn't a pleasant figment of my imagination, are photographs.

Well, those and the stretch marks on my boobs. They're a such a lovely reminder of engorged milk sacs and the time of being hooked up to a pumping machine like my husband's favorite Jersey cow, Beauty.

Remember the time I wiggled out of the straps and tried to climb out of the seat just as you were getting pulled over for running a stop sign? Remember how that cop DIDN'T think I was clever and escorted us to buy me a new wiggle proof car seat?

I prefer the pictures.

Remember how I screamed and cried when you dyed your hair brown? It was cuz it was REALLY ugly Mom.

The moments of discovering those photos were almost as good as the dreams where I can smell and feel and hear my son. It was a gift. A gift for a family that has for too long missed a little boy who filled our hearts with laughter, love and a whole lot of spittle.

Hell, for gifts like this, I'll babysit any damn day.

Just remind me to buy a bigger bottle of Gravol.

Remember how I'd defend you when ever Dad would tease you? I had your back Mom.
Still do.