Has anyone else ever felt that motherhood is like a one woman show? I sure do! I don't mean the "I-have-to-do-it-alone-feminist-type-act", but an actual, well, one man show.
From morning to evening I have to be "on", in the spotlight if you will, with all the typical tricks of the trade up my sleeve. At the crack of dawn (at least it feels that early!), I must be able to function enough to sing our good mornin' song or greet baby with a smile as I shuffle along wishing I could have a few more minutes of sleep before my much needed cup of coffee. Next in the line up could be any number of songs in order to keep my rambunctious toddler from rolling, kicking or throwing a fit while I attempt to change her and get her dressed. Or the silent movie impressions in order to keep us both quiet so big sis can sleep a few more minutes...lucky duck!
It does make me wonder...why does she fight the inevitable? I mean...we do the same thing every day...I thought she might be used to the changing table after nearly 16 months! Nevertheless, I find myself needing to distract her on a daily basis in order to keep her happy. This art of distraction includes, but is not limited to: tickle time, playing tootsie, funny faces, noises (sometimes soft ones gets her attention even more!) and of course some catchy tune from my repertoire of toddler favorites. I highly recommend singing the Fuzzy Wuzzy poem to the melody of London Bridge, very sweetly with a surprise attack ending on the last stanza - it gets her attention every time! Don't forget the classics: Wheels on the Bus or Itsy Bitsy Spider. As long as you perform with all the energy you can muster, your little one will be a captive audience. Of course, this is all before we descend the staircase for breakfast!
In act two, Mr. Banana joins the cast with his impersonation of a telephone. Yup! I answer the banana before handing it to baby who promptly holds it to her ear with a big smile and exclaims, "Hi!" I'm going for vintage vaudeville at this point! Besides, as hubby tells me, there is no funnier fruit than a banana.
Eventually intermission arrives and baby takes a nap, whew! Time to head to my dressing room, get a hot shower, and make my self presentable for the second half. Once the audience has tired of the replacement entertainers, otherwise known as stuffed musical toys, it is time to raise the curtain again. At some point, I find myself dealing with less refined theatrics: the baby striptease as she enjoys pulling off her shoes, socks and pants. She seems to get quite a thrill pitching them on the floor and watching me perform my clean up song!
Inevitably, the dirty diaper arrives. Cue the music, please. "Shapoopy, shapoopy, baby's got shapoopy!" With baby number three I finally realized that this was a real song from the Music Man. I know that I'm singing about poo, but what in the world is he singing about?! I'll have to watch that again sometime.
At bath time rubber ducky makes an entrance with my rendition of Ernie's classic, Rubber Ducky! It just isn't bath time without the little fellow, who's cute and yellow and chubby, rub dub dubby dub!
Finally, it's time for bed and quiet lullabies. The curtain closes on my one woman show with a touching scene of Mama and baby snuggling by the crib. I lay her down to Goodnight My Someone, from the Music Man and pray that I'm not needed for an encore later in the night!