The Little Things


When I was a gigantic six months pregnant, our then four-year-old daughter surprised the shit out of me one night by crashing on the couch super early. Fell asleep on her own and didn’t move an inch, even as Zan-Man licked her dinner right off her fingers. This never happened. 

Usually, there’s plenty of drama at bedtime, and I’m talking, neighbors-fear-for-my-children’s-lives type of drama. Back then, D worked a state away during the week while I flew solo, which really sucked. Naturally, I avoid the tub slash bedtime fights at ALL costs, mainly because I found that I’m a better… mom… when daddy is home to help. You know, by stepping in and backing me up. Or mediating. Or intervening. Or negotiating. Whatever works, really.

As I quietly celebrated my uninterrupted quality time with the dishes and laundry situation, I felt a sweet reward was in order. I acted as if my breathing would wake my babe, forcing me to share the un-shareable… my last tub of Ben & Jerry’s Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough ice cream. Enjoying every single spoonful of the holy-shit-this-is-good-shit ice cream, I got too close to the bottom and instantly panicked. Amidst my panic, you know who shuffled into the kitchen. Yep, with some psycho-looking hair, mid-yawn.

Of course.


As soon as she saw my little tub of goodness, her eyes shot open, and even I felt the excitement in her little heartbeat. But that excitement didn’t last too long –  the look of betrayal in her eyes overshadowed her hope. Scorned because Mom was eating something without her. And of all things, ice cream. I had to think fast because I knew negotiations were coming, and man, I felt pretty shitty. Or maybe that was the ice cream backing up, who knows. I always answer the question before it’s uttered:

“Nope – no ice cream for you this late…”

“It will give you a tummy ache and then you’ll have to poop…”

“And that will wake you up even more, and you won’t be able to get back to sleep…”

“And if you don’t sleep, then you can’t go to school and play with your friends – {gasp} OH NO!”

(I find it’s better to use cause and effect situations with the children)

“Plus, this is the last bit of ice cream, so we better save some for daddy. Don’t you think?”

(Lies. He never eats ice cream.)

I didn’t wait for an answer, and as I grabbed the lid and made for the freezer, I expected an argument – or a fit. At least a whimper from the little one. Nope, what I heard was far worse than any fit in the whole entire world:

“But mommy… sharing is caring.”

There it is, folks – the catch. You teach them these wonderful little life lessons, all for it to blow up in your face.

So, what did I do?

I did what any sane, rational parent would do at 11:15 on a school night. With the rest of that goodness in hand, we sat on the kitchen floor and finished it off.


Even with grown-ass kids, we still use the term “sharing is caring” around here because no matter your age, sharing is one of the kindest things everyone should do more often. For real.

“Happiness is not so much in having as sharing.

We make a living by what we get,

but we make a life by what we give.”

– Norman MacEwan

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