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Mama. There’s a stinkbug on your shoulder. Put it out.

I was exceptionally proud of myself for giving the bug a glance and then calmly suggested we get Mama* to take it outside. I am not the bug person in our house. Surely you have some sort of distinction as well. I handle the dead things (however reluctantly). Unless there are bugs on the dead thing, in which case, some sort of Tarentino-esque removal team has to come in and eliminate all traces of it. Not to say that we have a lot of dead things with bugs or even any but having them in my past is enough for me, thank you very much.

And so out went the stinkbug, but not after taking a short trip to the dishwasher and then a leisurely walk on the doormat, all carefully supervised by RR, who didn’t sound quite as sure of herself as she appeared. I have yet to smell a stinkbug which either means we’re very gracious bug hosts or I have some cilatro-like genetic immunity. I suspect it’s the latter since the spiderwebs in and around our house are littered with them. So there’s the answer then, we ARE gracious bug hosts. At least the spiders think so.

I was impressed with RR’s carefully controlled alarm. She was concerned that there was a bug rapidly approaching my ear (and so was I, believe me) but she was carefully checking me out to see if this was scary and I swallowed every flinch I had. I was also impressed with her full and articulate sentence and her perfect identification and pronunciation of ‘stinkbug’. In the moment I wondered, where is she getting this? 

Unlike every other toddler-quirk ever, there’s an answer! From school. Her teacher has a blog and the featured post today is all about the stinkbug approach at school. You guys, I may sort of have the life sucked out of me by all the school engagement but there’s no denying that this is a brilliant way to address the stinkbug epidemic.


* For folks who are new around here (or who have just forgotten, I don’t blame you), we’re both Mama around here. She doesn’t find it confusing. We rarely find it confusing. She’s adept at changing her intonation just slightly depending on the location of the mama she’s speaking to and the one she’s referring to. It’s enough for us.









8 Responses

  1. I’m impressed that both of you are able to share “Mama.” When my wife and I talk about parenthood we kind of assume we’ll need separate titles, and aren’t huge fans of “Mama and Mommy” as we fear they will both grow into “Mom” when the kidlet gets older and they will abuse that and get both of us to respond all the time.

    • So far, at three, she doesn’t try to lump us together and it doesn’t seem like she will since if she wants to wheedle she tries to appeal to our personal weaknesses 😉 Thank goodness she’s not much of a wheedler. I imagine every kid is different in this way but she still distinguishes via tone sometimes – so maybe they are different in her mind.

  2. I am so glad you mentioned the mama thing. I never really wanted Catch and I to have different mom names, but it’s rare to see a 2-mom family NOT have different names. I always figured we could both be mama and we’d figure it out. We jokingly refer to each other as “other mom” or “that mom” with the dogs–as in, “No–go bug your other mom,” or “That mom is going to feed you.” The dogs don’t seem confused. 😉

    • The dog can tell the difference between mamas too – exactly as you say. This is not the only comparison between dogs and children…

  3. A friend of mine has two mom’s (one of the first gaybies!) And she called both of her mom’s “mom” and no one ever bayed an eye in their family. After a while I learned to distinguish them while she was talking too.

    • Yes – you can definitely tell, especially if both of us are in the room. We are rarely confused but I imagine it’s complicated to folks coming in for the first time!

  4. I love that you’re both “mama”. My oldest daughter is being raised by her two daddies (modern families!) and she calls them both Dad. They both know which one she is referring to, based off her intonation.

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