I love books. I love to read. I’ve been doing it since I was approximately the muppets age. They say everyone is born with a gift. I’m pretty sure mine was to read all the books.
The muppets were started on their own developing love of literature early, but they’ve finally begun reaching the age where they can express their own preferences. Both have their favorites.
And it’s not bedtime without a book. (This is true for any age.) We have a routine. Each muppet picks their own story for the evening and takes turn sitting in mommy’s lap while the chosen tale is told. This is a large reason why both our living room and the nursery are strewn with a chaotic library of picture books.
With each turn of the page, muppets ask a minimum of 872 questions about every minute detail pictured – unless it actually relates to the textual story, in which case it is of no interest.
(There are also a couple books hidden under the futon. Don’t tell. I just couldn’t take yet another rendition.)
Sometimes the routine is a bit rougher than others. Usually when you subtract a nap from the equation or a certain little destroyer refuses to eat the parentally proffered supper – leading to a blood sugar crash that cannot be controlled until crackers are shoved down the melting muppet’s mouth.
It was my fault. I insisted on cutting his nails. He wasn’t pleased. It was all downhill from there.
The tantruming was impressive. This let to physical flailing and thrashing. And so, in a calm amazingly mature parental manner, Destroy was informed he would not be read his cloyingly loud sound-effects Mickey Mouse Clubhouse book before bed.
(Now before you get all judgy about withholding literature from small children please note, that by the very nature of twins, Search was still read a book and thereby Destroy could have paid attention. However he was busy trying to beat the glider into submission.)
As best we could, we calmly continued about our bedtime routine. We went potty (dragged kid into bathroom), we brushed teeth (aimed a pasted Cookie Moster toothbrush in kid’s general direction), got tucked into bed (lifted and placed writhing kid in bed), and gave goodnight kisses (got smacked in the face by flailing kid).
We shuttered the light and shut the door. Jon and I looked at one another, “This is not going to go well.”
I heard Destroy (as did most of the neighborhood) leap from his bed and race toward the door. He sobbed and screamed as he clutched at the doorknob. I let him wear himself out for 15 minutes. When I re-entered the room I found him collapsed on the floor clutching his Mickey book.
It may have been the most pathetic sight I’ve yet to see.
I put him back in bed. He resumed sobbing. I waited another 15 minutes. I attempted to console him when I returned to the room – patting his back and ultimately picking him up to rock in the still-standing glider. “It’s okay,” I soothed.
“NO!” he screamed. “I NEED TO READ ALL THE BOOKS!”
Overly emotional and obsessed with late-night reading. Yes, he may have received only his father’s DNA in terms of looks, but I’ve now got solid proof he’s my kid too.
Apparently when I was a muppet-aged tot, GrammaJ was busy trying to shoe me out of the house in between tantrums. “Put down the book and go play outside.”
For now, we read for hours before bedtime. Destroy analyzes every inch of the book to create his own story in his head. And as long as he’s a non-tantruming functional tiny person, we’ll read all the books until bedtime. Or until I send him outside to get some Vitamin D with crackers lest he lose all self-composure. Again.