My life is changed by becoming a mother (and not just in those stereotypical ways: baby talk, talking about poo–although I try only to talk to Ludo about that–having no time to myself (not even five minutes for a bath), going more than a bit crazy day changing diaper after diaper, more…). But, I actually find myself doing things I never would have imagined myself doing. For example, sometimes when we are walking down the street and a vehicle with a siren goes by we shout (Johnny and I) at the top of our lungs: “Pammmm ponnnn! Pammmm ponnnn! Pammmmm ponnnn!” Mimicking the sound of the siren. Fun. But not exactly an image I had of myself.
Last week, Johnny came home from crèche one day imitating a crocodile. I think they may have sung a song about one as he was also making a crocodile mouth with his arms. He stood in the kitchen: “‘Garde Mummy! ‘Garde” as he snapped his arms closed. “Cro-co-dile! Cro-co-dile!”
Then, last weekend at his grandparents, he saw some real crocodiles on the television. I don’t actually know when he became aware that crocodiles were actually kind of scary things but yesterday, everybody was downstairs in the carnotzet (we had a wine tasting) and Johnny left on his own for a minute. He came back in with a sad-kind-of-worried face. “Cro-co-dile Maman. Cro-co-dile” and he pointed out the door.
“Oh. Did you see a crocodile, Johnny?” I asked. A bit surprised.
“Yes.” He nodded in confirmation.
“Oh. Well. There are no crocodiles here at Grandpapas’s, Johnny. You don’t have to worry.”
But he still had a worried face and kept telling everybody that he had seen a crocodile.
I decided I would just tell that mean old crocodile to go away. I left the carnotzet and said in a really loud, commanding voice: “Va t’en crocodile. Va t’en.” And then I went back in and told Johnny I had told him to go away.
Johnny got really excited: “Cro-co-dile parti, Maman? Cro-codile parti?” and I felt like a hero. He started telling everybody: “Maman. Crocodile. Parti. ” Which, in his world means that Mummy told the mean old crocodile to go away! And he didn’t have to worry anymore.
When? When? When was the last time I was talking to an imaginary crocodile? And how come this hero moment wiped away all those endless days of changing poopy diapers?