A series in which I write letters to things or people. Serious or otherwise.
Hey, kiddo. So listen, I know your tiny baby brain is working as hard as it possibly can and that every day you’re taking in a lot, processing it and trying really hard to apply it. I see that. I see you walking around the house repeating things we’re saying. I see you picking up things like whisks and toilet bowl scrubbers and trying to use them appropriately. I see. And I am so proud (and relieved) that you seem to be smart. Or at least aware.
I understand that what I’m about to say goes against everything your environment is telling you. I know this is going to be hard to understand and even harder to apply. So, Dad and I will be patient as we walk through this together.
Shepherd, my sweet love, you are not in a parade all day everyday.
The market isn’t a group of people randomly gathered to see you and follow you around in your stroller giving you bananas. Not everyone is here for you. They’re not.
Restaurants are not just buildings of people waiting for you to get there because they can’t wait to watch you throw chicken on the floor and clap for yourself and wipe your sweet, chubby mouth.
Traffic jams are not pre-arranged with families just sitting, waiting and hoping your car will be next to theirs so they can see you and wave to you and maybe pass you candy through the window.
The zoo isn’t marketed as one of Chiang Mai’s best attractions because you’re there saying ‘HI’, ‘CUP’, and ‘PWWWEASE’ really sweetly and on command.
I know this makes none sense to you. I know this goes against everything you experience.
I know this is like that time I put you in your highchair to color, not eat. It was weird and wrong and went against all things good and Holy.
I’m just worried, pet, that when we’re in America, you’re going to fall into a deep depression.
I want you to know, and be prepared for the fact that people are not just waiting for you to show up. I’m willing to bet that no one will care when you get to Target. I don’t think the waitresses and waiters at Applebee’s will stand and watch you eat, hold your hand and wipe your mouth. If someone tries to give you candy in a traffic jam, Mommy will call the police. When we go shopping for clothes, if someone takes you out of the cart, brings you into a back room and starts feeding you various meats, they will be arrested and on TV that night.
I know this is hard and confusing to hear. Come close, my love. It’s best to be surrounded by loved ones in times of emotional distress and turmoil.
None of this means you are not loved or precious.
It just means you are not Miss Thailand 2015, as you’ve been led to believe by nearly every single Thai person you’ve met.
It means that you will not get to eat a small meal everywhere we go, including but not limited to: gas stations, clothing stores, drug stores, stranger’s homes and the DMV.
It means that you will actually have to stay with Mom and Dad while we are out in public. Or stay in the cart. Sorry, bud.
It means you won’t get to go back into the kitchen of the restaurants we will eat in.
It means that if we’re out in public and you see someone with something you want, you don’t get to walk up to them, smile and say ‘PPPWWWEASSE’ and get some.
It also means, cherub, that since we’re in America, where more people parent the way we do, if you decide you want to scream and throw a temper tantrum in public, we’re going to let you. I know this sounds evil and awful, but we don’t care.
Mommy and Daddy love you so much. We will get through this together, I promise.
All my love, Mom. XO