Danny is the youngest. However, to underestimate him because he is the youngest is a fatal mistake. When I see his keenly developed ability to torment his brothers, I could swear he’s been alive for decades. His blue eyes shimmer with glee as he races toward the next opportunity to torture poor Benjamin. He has made “I’m telling” our family anthem as he sings it running to his father or me and has turned “looking out my side” into the mantra of a terrorist. When we drive long distances in the Denali he’s perfected facial manifestations that include quick darts, fast shakes and nonchalant glances to catch his brothers looking out his side so he can scream at the top of his lungs “STOP LOOKING OUT MY SIDE”. Now at first I didn’t get the whole “side” thing. However, when you are six and under, apparently it is a HUGE deal to have your brother trespass into your window territory. I find myself completely sucked in, trying to “catch him” looking out Ben’s side (note to readers, I am a college educated woman). “See…you look out Ben’s side too” I proclaim with a sense of reason, as I swerve the truck going 60 miles per hour in order to avoid the concrete barrier. I mean I have nearly wrecked the truck by whipping my head around just milliseconds after Danny has crossed back over into his own “window territory” at the sound of Ben’s screams (I know it is milliseconds because because I can literally see the air moving). I have yelled at the tops of my lungs, threatened car abandonment on the interstate and slapped at thin air seething through gritted teeth “You…stop…that…now…and…look…out… your…own…side….”. However to a boy whose is told routinely at the dinner table to “Get that out of your belly button” this is really just simple sparring against a woefully inadequate opponent.
I’ve never taken to the philosophy of spanking. If however, in the midst of the “looking out my side” revolt that takes place in the back of the truck in the middle of a long drive to or from somewhere I’m going FOR THEM…if at that point there were any possible way to extend my arm at the joint and reach back to their tiny little bottoms I would whack away and feel pretty good about it. Thankfully, and perhaps by design, their seats are too far away.
I’m hoping this is not just my children. I can’t imagine this was God’s plan. I mean in Eden did little Cain and little Able fight over little Seth looking out their side of the camel. Oh, wait a minute; I just remembered how THAT all ended.
Until next time … “stop kicking my chair”.