"Um, get a new face, new hair, new eyebrows, some new pants... and a new shirt!"
Uh, "how would I get a new face?"
"Maybe smile, and paint on some eyelashes."
I'm still not really sure what she was getting at, but she sure is a sweet kid. Don't I smile enough?
A couple weeks back a co-worker said something like this: "You know, people with kids are at a different level in my book -- they've been tested, you know? They've been in situations where things are just totally and completely out of control, and that does something to a person."
I don't think he was saying that people without kids couldn't do as well or better, it's just that they haven't yet. Sort of like if you're going on a hike, and you have two boy scouts in front of you, one who's hiked the Grand Canyon and the other who hasn't -- it's not that one is necessarily a better hiker than the other, but you at least have a data point on the first.
Raising kids is totally different from everything else in that you can't just give up with them. For example, you can't just say, "I don't care that you're in the street, I'm done with you today!" You have these little incomplete brains connected to these high-energy devices that you are entirely responsible for, but don't have total control over.
For example, when Kyla and I walked in from outside this afternoon, the girls were all huddled around a cutting board with one of the Ginsu knives*, chopping up a squash. Apparently Kendy had managed to get one that was up on the counter (she's only 1!). Kinney later discovered she had sliced open her finger. Then later, I went to climb out of the shower and discovered that my towel was... crunchy. I'm pretty sure one of my kids sprayed it with hairspray.
What all this means is that parents quickly learn how long their fuse is, and how big the "package" is at the end of that fuse. Happily the reset-fuses seem to grow a little longer each time around, which I guess is part of the growing process the Lord has in mind for us.**
Still, it can be a little nerve-racking sometimes.
* For the record, we did not get them off an infomercial! We got 'em here.