I was picking up Dexy from day care the other day, when I discovered something alarming.
I am the mother of an almost-two-year-old double agent.
I picked up my baby boy, brushed the blond hair out of his clear blue eyes, and watched as he popped his left thumb in his mouth so his right hand could grab a hank of my hair.
"Dexy!" his teacher said in scandalized tones. "I didn't know you suck your thumb!"
Excuse me? This child, who, if the ultrasound pictures are any indication, has been sucking his thumb since before his actual birth, doesn't suck his thumb at school?
That's right. Not even at nap time. He just lays down on his cot and goes right to sleep.
Apparently, at school, the Dexy who requires two parents, an iPod of oldies, and seventeen carefully selected stuffed animals to fall asleep doesn't exist.
At school, Dexy also:
- Lies quietly when his diaper is changed (as opposed to saying, "No, Mommy! No poop!" and kicking/peeing on the diaper-er)
- Eats very neatly, using his utensils. He's the neatest one in the class, she says. You lie, I said, thinking of the spaghetti stains on my ceiling.
- Reads several major world newspapers and provides translations for some of the day care staff.
Okay, I made that last one up. But, still, I am disturbed. Who is this little boy? My Dexy is still my little baby, not this grown-up toddler about to sprout facial hair and football pads.
Then, I realized it:
He's humoring me.
He's staying my baby for me. No, stay with me on this one: he likes being the baby, he knows I like him being my baby, so where's the harm?
I promise, if he's still sucking his thumb when the facial hair and football pads appear, I'll put a stop to it.