Aside from the shrieking pterodactyl (K) and the constant toddler babbling (M), I’m alone most of the day with my own thoughts. This is decidedly unsettling, as they come across as a pair of bickering roommates, parties who should long ago have split the furniture and found separate homes. Neither are entirely at fault; it’s just, well, they’re not exactly compatible. Roommate A is anal, perfectionistic, and bossy. Roommate B is relaxed, easygoing, and sweet. I’d like to think they’re extensions of my right and left brain, both equally dominant in my personality and skills, but maybe I’m just a little nuts. Anyway, they go along some thing like this:
A: Don’t pick her up! You pick her up and she’ll expect it. This is about training, lady.
B: But she fell asleep while nursing. She’s probably hungry. And it’s just one time.
A: One time too many, marshmallow. What kind of pansy-ass girl are you raising anyway?
B: But I hate to see her so tired. If I just rock her a little bit…
A: Yeah, well, you see where that gets you. And don’t come crying to me later, because I’m telling you so right now.
A: He cut the comforter! You let him cut with scissors near the bed, barely supervised, and look what happened!
B: Accidents happen. It’s just a little hole in a comforter that was poor quality to begin with. It was about his autonomy, after all, and it could have been much worse.
A: Exactly! Do you know what he could have done? He could have cut his finger, or his clothes, or BOTH!
B: But he didn’t.
A: But he could have. Seriously, what kind of parent are you anyway?
B: The kind who lets her kid learn how to use scissors. The kind who does art projects and makes stockings and sings to her kids while doing so.
A: Singing? Like Christmas carols? Like songs that have no educational quality whatsoever? Think of the time you’re wasting!
B: But we were having fun.
A: Yeah, well, fun is all well and go until someone gets their eye poked out. Which sounds like the next likely event, if you ask me.
I never ask A, but he’s always ready to volunteer anyway, and as kind a cheerleader as B is, she just doesn’t have the stamina to stand up to A’s beatings. I really think I need only one of them in residence, and I know we would all prefer that one to be B, but how exactly do I evict a tenant who’s squatting to begin with?
(On a curious aside, did you notice how I automatically genderized A as male and B as female? Totally by accident, honestly, but I can hear A now: “See, there’s another one of those pansy-ass girls mouthing off, that B. You ought to save K while you have the chance…”)