Saturday, 31 October 2009
So me Momosaurus decided that we were going to get our lil Zachosaurus his first Halloween pumpkin yesterday. We thought it would be ever so cute to take pictures of him in his costume next to his very own Jack O'lantern. When he woke up this morning I excitedly told my little buddy that we were going to go on an adventure (i.e. a ride in the car) this afternoon. Zachosaurus loves adventures and I got a big smile out of him as I picked him up and took him to Momosaurus for breakfast. After a short cat nap and the two of us picked out a onesie and some shorts to wear and the headed out to the local Wallyworld to fetch our pumpkin and some other groceries. When we got to the store there wasn't a pumpkin to be found! Not a single solitary Cucurbita Cucurbitaceae anywhere in the store. My heart sank. I solemnly explained to Zachosaurus that we wouldn't be able to get a pumpkin at the store because they had sold out, or they were all gathered up and destroyed by right wing conservatives who believed their wholesome way of life was threatened by this pagan holiday that the gays must certainly be behind. Zachosaurus coo'd and drooled in response. I don't know for sure, but the twinkle in his eyes and the amount of drool seemed to indicate he thought it was the conservatives too. Dejected we pushed our cart around the store to gather our other groceries.
One of the items on our list was a new toy of some variety that the Zachosaurus could safely put in his mouth. About 3 weeks ago he had discovered that he had something at the ends of his right arm. For several days he flailed about trying to get this thing into his mouth as he decided that was the best place to put it. Suddenly one day he popped right in and was pleased to no end that this thing at the end of his arm was in fact his hand! With much joy he would ball his little hand into a fist and pop it into his mouth at every opportunity. Then about a week ago he made the amazing discovery that his left arm also had a hand attached. Much cooing and giggling commenced. He also discover that his hands, that he had previously been learning to hold things in, could be used to bring whatever he was holding into his mouth. Bibs, Momosaurus' hair, the cat's tail, Dadosaurus glasses, anything he could grabbed he tried to put in his mouth, because apparently that is where he felt it should go. Well, most of his toys were either too big to grasp and insert into his mouth, or were linked to his colorful baby link thingies and would only reach with much effort. Soooo it was decided that Zachosaurus would get a new toy that was easy and light enough to grasp, and safe enough to put in his drooly maw. The two of us walked down the toy aisle minding our own business ooing and ahhing over the bright colorful potential new toys a lady walking by us stopped and commented on how cute my lil buddy was. Thanking her I smiled and turned back to the task at hand. Then, as she walked away she made one last comment "I wish my husband would babysit for me once in a while. Ha ha ha." Hahahaha, yeah laugh it up. I turned and smiled and said "I'm not babysitting." More giggles. "Oh you know, It's nice when the man watches the kids every once in a while." And with a wink she walked down the aisle leaving me fuming.
Fuming you ask? Yeah fuming...because nothing makes me angrier then when someone assumes that because I am out at the store with my son that I must be babysitting, because there is no way a man could be the primary caregiver! Heavens, no! What woman in their right mind would leave their precious child home alone for extended periods of time with their husbands! Now before all you nitpickers start in on me lets get one thing straight. I am not a babysitter by any twisted form of feminist logic. Babysitter (n)- a person engaged in temporary care for a child(ren) on behalf of the parents. I do not babysit my son. I am a stay-at-home-dad. I am raising my son as the primary caregiver while my wife is the primary source of income for our family. There is a world of difference between what I do all day and what a babysitter does. Now is it silly for me to get upset over someones choice of words? To me, no. No it is not. Because it is 2009 not 1950 and men are perfectly capable of staying home and raising children. Men are not these oafish screw-ups who can't change a bottle or fix a bottle and when we try to take care of the kids hilarity ensues until mom comes to the rescue. We are not Homer Simpson or Tim Taylor. We aren't these emotionally distant father figures that the media likes to portray us as. Hell, U.S. Representative Cynthia Davis (R-Missouri) sponsored a bill to give families with stay-at-home moms a tax credit, but not stay-at-home dads because , in her own words, "only women can be nurturers." Men are denied sole custody of children in divorce cases even when it is shown the mother is unfit because the longstanding belief that mothers raise the children, not the father. Even among our lawmakers and courts fathers are stereotyped as incapable of raising children. We are the "babysitter" in the eyes of most people. That is just wrong, plain and simple, so again, yes it does make me angry! Hell, I can't even get our pediatrician to address me at the doctor's office when we take Zachosaurus for check ups after I ask a question! She turns right to my wife and answers her like I'm not even there. And since the recession began more and more men are stay at home with the kids while the wife works, but we are still looked at as "the guy who watches the kids until mom gets home". In several surveys done by Careerbuilder.com, Time Magazine, and Pregnancy and Birth Magazine since the beginning of the economic downturn more then 50% of men said they were considering staying home with the kids. Fixed gender roles in this country be damned! We can and are able to raise our children. So all you mommy's out there, next time you see that dad in a store with that baby in a shopping cart and no mom in sight don't just think he is babysitting. Take a moment and think that maybe he is the 'lil ones primary caregiver. Think back to when you started raising your kids while your husband worked and what a challenge that was and know that that daddy is going through the same thing. And maybe help him out by telling him that those Huggies are on sale in the 89 pack jumbo box, and that while Boudreau's Butt paste is great on diaper rash, A&D ointment is just fine too. And maybe give him a dollar off coupon for some of those fancy baby wipes with the aloe.
Bet that title at the top of my blog makes sense now. Anyway, back to our shopping trip...
Well, Zachosaurus picked out a nice colorful set of teething beeds that appeared to fit all the features he was looking for. Since we happens to be near the baby stuff and I just happen to be the biggest marshmallow in the world when it comes to my little boy and love nothing more then to dress him in the most adorable clothes I can find we swung the cart by the fleece sleepers. We hadn't gotten 3 steps when my heart went all a flutter and i let out a big "Awwhhhhhhhh". There hung on the rack was the cutest fleece penguin print sleeper with little penguin head feet. Not only am I sucker for baby clothes but I am also a sucker for penguins. I start thumbing through the hangers looking for a 3-6 size and to my dismay find none;however, what I do find is a 6-9. Quickly doing math in my head, and then counting on my fingers to make sure my head math was right I flip open the cell phone and call Momosaurus and make sure that I can in fact still do simple math and that a 6-9 size will fit my little buddy when it is still feasible for him to be wearing a fleece sleeper. Momosaurus tells me that my little dude will indeed still be using a fleece sleeper and that he also is in need of more warm fuzzy bed time clothes for that size. Bingo, we have a winner. As I pull the sleeper off the rack I notice another sleeper with 2 dinosaurs on it the says "Daddy" under the one larger T-Rex looking dinosaur and the words "and me!" under the smaller T-Rex on the other side. That one is available in 3-6 month size and after a brief consultation with Momosaurus it also finds its way into the cart.
We breeze around the store, finish our shopping, and jump into the first open checkout line we can find. As I load my bagged purchases into the cart the cashier hands me the receipt and says to Zachosaurus "Aww, hey lil cutie, is daddy babysitting?" I make my way to the car leaving the smoldering ruins of what once was a Walmart behind me.
On the way home we stopped at Food lion and IGA in a desperate attempt to find a pumpkin bu to no avail. It seems the right wingers beat us to them all.
And for all of you dying to see, here are some pictures of the little Zachosaurus: