Parenthood: A Bloodless Coup

Grandma just left after two nights of sleepovers. Watching her go made The Girl very forlorn. She insists the only way to cope is taking an enormous nap on Mom’s chest, and Mom must devote the whole of her attention to this pursuit. If Mom tries to multi-task with her free arm, which she occasionally attempts with varying degrees of failure, The Girl will wake and object. Even as this passage is being written she has interjected several times to voice her concern about the state of Mom’s priorities.

As a result, Mom’s neural pathways have begun to harden, stiffening under the accumulation of stagnating brain cells, like plaque buildup in the arteries. Some pathways have succumbed entirely to obsolescence, others atrophy from lack of use. The sensation becomes not one of the sharp edge of clarity, but one of liquefying from decomposition. The longer she is trapped under the snoozing girl, the less she desires to do anything but.

During periods of wakefulness, The Girl practices alternating leg movements in preparation for her upcoming marathon and ensures proper caloric intake with absurdly frequent meals. Strength training is key as well, thus combating any form of suggested physical interaction with a different form of interaction helps build fortitude, endurance, and resolve. “Strength of body, strength of mind,” she always says.

Occasionally, The Girl produces a twinkly eye or dazzling smile but not after one is requested by a person of superior size. She can’t make Mom and Dad think she’s buckling to their will. On the contrary, flashing a smidgeon of charm at arbitrary intervals only makes them try harder.

In her spare time, The Girl continues exercising her vocal capacities with varying sounds and volumes. The higher decibel ranges tend to correlate with swift results and are used at carefully calculated moments, depending on need. There also appears to be a correlative relationship between relative ambient volume and introduction of new sound produced: Expressing vocal noise loudly and in the quiet hours of the morning maximizes external response.

When the trials of everyday life have become too burdensome, or in the wake of Grandma’s inevitable departure, The Girl expresses her discontent with passion and rigor rather than the polite request for a nap. She believes the efficacy of a nap is greater when the Z’s were fought for and hard won. It’s difficult to argue with such irrefutable logic.

And so the cycle begins again. The carefully concocted recipe for maximal infantile existence plays repeatedly on loop to secure Mom and Dad’s unwavering servitude to future needs. Oddly, it’s as if they oblige happily, almost like there is enjoyment to be derived from pacifying a small person’s unrest, soothing her woes, and filling her tummy. Regardless, The Girl will soldier on with increasingly demanding requests until one day she, too, won’t be able to get a damn thing done around the house.

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