Tonawanda News


October 27, 2013

DOUBLE TROUBLE: 'Mom, mom, mommy, mommy, mommy, mooooom ....'

Tonawanda News — It’s enough to make almost any parent get a little wild-eyed.

When you have kids, you get used to the lack of quiet. You get fairly paranoid about it, actually. Quiet means they’re up to something, like coloring on the walls or their siblings, trying to overflow the sink, or ransacking their room to build a contraption from the wildest imagination of Rube Goldberg. All real-life examples from our family, actually.

You still yearn for it, sometimes. Just a few minutes of sheer, blessed silence seems like heaven. But when you get it, eventually you start looking around, wondering why everything is so gosh-darned still.

No, I’m used to noise. But lately, I’m going to admit, there have been times I’ve wanted to clap my hands over my ears and go hide in the cellar for a half-hour. Except that they’d come looking for me. And there’s a wicked echo down there. It’s not, necessarily, the volume. It’s the repetition.

“Mom, mom, mommy, mommy, mommy, mooooom ....”

“What, Jim?”


Then, a few seconds later ... “Mommy, mommy, mom, mom, mom, mommy ....”

“What is it, James?” 

“I want to do (insert request here, from ‘get a milkshake’ to ‘go back to Disney World). 

Responses range from “Maybe later if you’re good” to a “One of these days.”

A minute or two (or five seconds) later:

“Mom, mom, mommy, mommy, mommy, mooooom ....”


Repeat request. Repeat response. Repeat wait time. Repeat request ... repeat ... repeat ... repeat ...

Finally, you’re going about your business with that wild-eyed gaze, a constant refrain of “Mom!” ringing in your eyes and a small child standing three inches away, convinced that if he just keeps repeating it enough, maybe it will happen, right?

We call this the “flowered-chair” tactic at our house, after a piece of furniture owned by my husband that I desperately wished to get rid of after we bought our house. I told him this. He kept not hearing and persistently talking about where to put it. Nine years later, we still have the dratted chair. So I guess the boys come by it honestly.

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