Sleep, Zoo, Playground: 7 Hours of Living In the Bizaare-o-World of Parenting

My son Obi was up at 4:30 this morning.  Not sure why, except that he’s crazy and doesn’t yet appreciate all of the sleep he will wish he could get back when he’s my age.  My wife spent approximately 28 minutes trying to solve the problem of the waking 33 month old to no avail.  There was a lot of screaming (that was my son) and exasperation (that was my wife).  I reluctantly got out of bed to tag-team the situation and to keep the 17 month old from being awakened by the thunderstorm of nonsense coming from the bedroom next to hers.  My wife thought I was tagging in to the ring (which was not my plan) and went back downstairs to bed.  I laid my tired son on my lap while I sat indian style on his floor for about 5 minutes.  Then I put him in bed, read him a story, got him some milk, and told him we were going to the zoo when he wakes up.  He bought it, and stayed in bed.  We won the round.

Both the kids were marginally sick, and the crazy Children’s Ministry Director (my wife) has a rule about no sick kids being in the nursery at church, so I was tasked with entertaining/keeping the peace with both kids for about three hours this morning.  So, we naturally went to the zoo.  The Peoria Zoo is half great, half exactly the small-town zoo you would expect, and we’ve been there about 10 times this summer with the kids.  So the zoo was only exciting for the fact that there is a lion named Arthur that Obi thinks is his friend.  There I was, in a tank-top and shorts, baring my tattoos in full-force (I do that for comfort and to get people wondering why this tattooed guy is pushing two toddlers around in a stroller like a good dad at the zoo).  They had a good time up until we saw the lions, then Obi wanted to go to a playground.

So we did.

The kids played to exhaustion on the playground just as my wife arrived from church to rescue me.  Obi was so tired that he actually asked if we could go home.  That never happens.  And, since I also wanted to go home, I thought it sounded like a good idea.

My wife had no parental patience inside of her this morning/afternoon, and I am so grateful that, by the grace of God, I somehow did.  That’s what partnership is about.  When one is incapable, the other steps up and takes the reigns.  I know I ask that of her all of the time, and today I’m glad I was able to return the favor.

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