The Mister is a fan of witty and clever t-shirts, and this one – a gift from his sister – is a frequent favourite. I’m not sure, however, that I can ever look at it again now thanks to the dark, devious, and twisted thinking of our toddler.
Let’s be honest – no one really knows how these creatures think. We think we do, and then we are regularly reminded that we are wrong. I mean, this is a kid who can easily consider big scary monsters as cuddly, but gets traumatised if I attempt to give him a strawberry. Also, I’m fairly certain he’s convinced the world is going to end if he’s not the one who turns on all the lights in the morning. God forbid Mommy or Daddy get there first!
The only constant is that while you can’t really anticipate what’s going to come flying at you (literally or metaphorically) you can at least assume that it’s going to be weird and inexplicable.
I was not home for the event that has forever changed how I view this shirt, but the story I heard goes like something this:
Hawkeye is on the toilet before bedtime. He told Daddy he needed to do a wee wee but after sitting on the toilet seat for a little bit there’s the telltale splash of something more solid. This prompts a surprised but pleased expression on Hawkeye’s face.
“I did a poo poo!”
“A big poo poo!”
Daddy was in the midst of offering the usual congratulatory agreement on this accomplishment when Hawkeye gaze moves down from his face to his shirt more intently, and he points to the figure on the left: “That’s Daddy poo poo!”
Um… okaaaaaaaay? The thing is, as a parent you will agree to just about anything to keep your kid happy and keep the peace if it’s not violating any of the Big Rules. Are those bear tracks? Yes, of course they are. Is it not raining outside? No of course not, that’s not rain, that’s just…. a leaking could. Is that stick figure on my shirt Daddy Poo Poo? Yes, yes it must be. Not to mention, the kid is almost three years old. It’s completely normal at this point to have a full dialogue about poop. The first year or two it’s Mummy and Daddy talking about poo to each other. Then it’s Mummy and/or Daddy discussing poo with the toddler. It’s all perfectly normal. Welcome to parenting, everyone. What, you mean you don’t find your baby’s bowel movements to be a scintillating topic of conversation?
Hawkeye wasn’t done, however. Another splash and he once again deliberately points to Daddy’s shirt, this time to the figure on the right, and exclaims “And that’s Mommy poo poo!”
Yes, yes. Fine. Mommy poo poo and Daddy poo poo. Are we done yet? Can I stand up now before I lose all feelings in my kneecaps? Can we get out of the bathroom and move on to the Ritual Gathering of My Things? (The quilt blanket, the giraffe, Conor the camel, and the pacifier all have to be gathered from wherever they wind up the previous morning and solemnly returned to Hawkeye’s cot before any further bedtime processes may be commenced.)
“I’m finished,” he declares, just before a teeny tiny splash causes him to put his hand on his mouth in a parody of a shocked gesture. And then he gives Daddy a huge grin. “And that’s Baby Poo Poo!”
Because, of course it is.