Becoming grand changes people. It goes to their heads, warps their personalities and makes them into totally different people. Case in point; becoming grand changes parents. Grandparenting is totally different than parenting.
For example, today we had an interesting family moment. My firstborn clearly wanted to swim in the wading pool. He went outside, grabbed the pool, dragged the water hose to it and said, “Okay! You do it!” However, at that moment the 32 oz drink from Whataburger would no longer fit in my 3 oz bladder. I dashed into my room declaring that I would promptly return with swimming trunks in hand. Bonus: I count tinkle without supervision on the same trip!
When I returned outside, my father was watering the flowers with the hose my son had handed him. This was a sure sign that the pool had already been filled. This also dramatically increased the probability that my son was in the pool.
This wasn’t a crazy idea. The previous morning when I said a morning shower was on the to-do list, he escaped the patio, opened the door to the outside and decided to take matters into his own hands.
I, the PARENT, calmly took him into the house, shucked his wet clothes and bathed him. His GRANDPARENTS laughed and took pictures.
I prepared to face the unknown. My sister was between me and the pool, so I sighed to her, “Tell me my son is not sitting in the pool fully clothed.”
“Oh no. He is just in a Pull-Up!” she assured me with a grin.
I turned the corner to the house and saw my bathing beauty having a wonderful time. He stood up and showed me a bottom half that resembled Donald Duck’s. Dang it.
My father then turned to me with exciting news. Now, my father is the least expressive of our clan so about 90% of all good news is shared with a poker face.
“Guess what your son said for the first time!” My son is a late talker, so anything discernible to another adult is exciting. I raised my eyebrows in excited anticipation.
“He said, ‘I pooped!’ and he most assuredly had” my father informed me, expressionless. I turned back to see the Pull-Up filled to capacity. There was no point to asking my father why he woudl do such a thing. He is a wonderful teacher and indulger but when it comes to bathroom issues one thing is clear: I am the Mom. He is not to be trusted. This is the same man who was in charge of making sure my son remained seated on the potty a few days earlier while I changed the baby’s very dirty diaper. My father got up from his evening ice cream and news watching ritual to supervise. When I returned the bathroom my father was crouching over my son and feeding him spoonfuls of ice-cream to encourage his excellent sitting.
My father is hence-forth fired from dootie-duty.
Apparently I should not have been surprised. I turned back to the toddler.
“Did you go poop?” I asked my three year old in the mom-tone. My son looked at me with an expression that plead the fifth.
Waterlogged drawers are the worst excuse for a floatation device toddlerhood has to offer. I went over to my son and removed a bloated microbe-filled floatie. Naturally, he splashed his nudey-bootie right back into the water before I could clean him.
My kid brought poo to the pool party.
After emptying the pool, rinsing it with soap and throwing away the evidence, both boys could finally swim in the pool.
Just the basic steps to an outdoor pool party with toddlers, right Yep. Pretty much. I’m not sure who is harder to train– toddlers or grands.