How to traumatize your preschooler without really trying

We celebrated Alec’s birthday this weekend with a little barbecue and a series of gifts intended to celebrate both his geekiness and his inner child: namely Make Electronics Kit for building mini robots with (or without!) Holden and Guitar Hero for the Wii. He couldn’t have been happier if I bought him the new iPhone (well, maybe).

So back to the part where I scarred my three-year-old for life or longer…

After the barbecue, he was a little riled up and had trouble going off to sleep. Maybe it was the 40 potato chips, apple juice, or cake. Or the excitement of having just turned the sprinkler on as the party was winding down. Maybe it’s the recent night-time potty training. Who can say?

But just as I was debuting (I got booed off stage, but I did dance and sing and try my best) to Poison’s Talk Dirty to Me on “daddy’s new guitar” Holden showed up in our dining room wearing only footie pajamas with the body and sleeves slung up over his shoulder and no diaper (he couldn’t figure out how to reattach it himself). Since I was so focused on my art, I didn’t look over at him, but Alec, MIL, and our two adult male guests saw him jaw agape.

I guess he went into some form of shock and the questions started flying.

  • What’s Mommy doing? Can I try?
  • What’s that show on TV? How does that work?
  • (Is this what you guys do every night after I go to bed?)

He was up chattering for another 45 minutes unable to calm himself. And I’ve been afraid to play again.