More on Oatmeal Kisses

Wet Oatmeal Kisses The baby is teething. The children are fighting. Your husband just called and said, “Eat dinner without me.” One of these days you’ll explode and shout to the kids, “Why don’t you grow up and act your age?” And they will. Or, “You guys get outside and find yourselves something to do. And don’t slam the door!” And they don’t. You’ll straighten their bedrooms all neat and tidy, toys displayed on the shelf, hangers in the closet, animals caged. You’ll yell. “Now I want it to stay this way!” And it will. You will prepare a perfect dinner with a salad that hasn’t had all the olives picked out and a cake with no finger traces in the icing and you’ll say, “Now THIS is a meal for company.” And you will eat it alone. You’ll yell, “I want complete privacy on the phone. No screaming, do you hear me?” And no one will answer: No more plastic tablecloths stained with spaghetti. No more dandelion bouquets. No more iron-on patches. No more wet, knotted shoelaces, muddy boots or rubber bands for ponytails. Imagine. A lipstick with a point. No babysitter for New Year’s Eve, washing clothes only once a week, no PTA meetings or silly school plays where your child is a tree. No car-pools, blaring stereos or forgotten lunch money. No more Christmas presents made of library paste and toothpicks. No more wet oatmeal kisses. No more tooth fairy. No more giggles in the dark, scraped knees to kiss or sticky fingers to clean. Only a voice asking: “Why don’t your grow up?” And the silence echoes: “I did.” Adapted for use by Donna Otto

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