I love Smush so dang much. She is zany and loving and silly and in a world all her own. Beyond the whole break-all-the-things issue she seems to have, our only current problem is that for the life of me, I cannot get her to understand the concept of a “stranger.”
Since birth, she has been so ridiculously happy and friendly. Grocery shopping took forever because I kept having to wrangle my children, much like a sheep dog wrangles sheep. Only with produce involved.
But also because she would wave and bat those ridiculously long eye lashes at every single person who walked by. I figured she would grow out of this. I was wrong.
Around 2 years old, she suddenly yelled in said grocery store, “Stop! Go back to the other side!” When I asked why, she said, “Because there was an old man! He’s my friend. I need to say hi.” Oh. Of course.
The Nerd and I actually kind of enjoy this. She spreads smiles and sunshine to passersby all the time, and I super loved that. Until this summer.
Setting: A family festival for children with cancer. In attendance were patients and families, med school students, a professor, a magician, and some other awesome people.
(Side note: My life-long dream has always been to work in medicine. You’ll see why that’s relevant in a bit.)
The kids had lined up to hit a pinata, and I noticed Smush wasn’t with us. I didn’t panic, because she had been hanging out all day with Goo’s buddy – a first year med student who hangs with Goo at every appointment – to help Goo, and to learn about this road from the family’s point of view. BRILLIANT PROGRAM.
Me: Buddy, is Smush with you?
Buddy: No. I thought she went to the pinata.
Me: Sigh. Nerd! Nerd! Is Smush with you??
Nerd: No. I thought she was with you.
Me: *Scanning area. I see a large group of med students standing in a circle, obviously staring at something in the middle.* I approach the circle.
Med student: She’s over here! Your daughter’s over here.
Me: Oh thank you! *enters circle*
Me: Oh for the love of all that is good and holy – WHAT is she doing?
And there I found my adorable, virtuous 3-year-old. Bent over, hands on the ground, moving her little heiny back and forth, giggling with glee at the large audience she had amassed.
Me, to nearby student: Is she…twerking?
(If you don’t know what twerking is, just Google “Miley Cyrus twerking.” And then get a therapist for what you are about to see.)
The students erupted in laughter. I hanged my head in shame as they would undoubtedly assume she learned that from me. Or from some horrific music video I let her watch.
I picked her up, brought her over to the pinata, and informed the Nerd that his daughter had been twerking in the middle of a crowd of people.
I can see it now. After years of waiting, working, studying and praying, I make it to a med school interview.
The interviewer promptly says, “Oh hey! You’re that mom whose toddler was twerking in public! I remember you.”
I think we can kiss that dream goodbye.