Over the weekend Jaxon and I went to visit my cousin in Eagan. She and her husband have twins who are exactly one month older than Jaxon. When we were planning the trip I was looking forward to all of the fun we would have. We’d take them out to play at the park, maybe a toddler gym and maybe even some place to eat. Sounds like a great time, right?
Holy Moly! We made it out of their house once on Saturday and within an hour Jen, my cousin, says to me, “where should we go next?”
“HOME!” I cried.
She was very nervous that I would think the trip would be boring if we just stuck around her house. Yeah, not so much!
Sure, it was twins and a singlet, but you put them together and you have triplets. That also meant we were out numbered three to two. But if you really do the math by using a unique formula, two mommies and three toddlers is more like 1,000 children to one.
To be fair if I were not 27 weeks pregnant I probably would have done fine with the whole thing. But I cannot keep up with my toddler, let alone two others. Of course, it was really mine that was the crazy one.
“I’m going to just run into this store to look for some maternity clothes,” I told my cousin. “Would you watch Jaxon at this little play place?”
The next thing I knew my guy came bolting out of nowhere, into the store, screaming, “Mommy! Mommy! SAVE ME!” (This is how he asks to be carried. No kidding. Because who can say no to a toddler who wants to be “saved?” He’s a smart one!)
There went my own personal 5 minute shopping trip.
We went back to the house and the kids played. It was nice to have them contained so we could sit for a while and chat. But don’t be fooled—even contained toddlers are a lot to handle.
“No, Jaxon, Buddy had that first.”
“Natalie, please let Jaxon use that toy.”
“Buddy, stop throwing food.”
“Who has a dirty diaper?” (Dear Lord, don’t let it be all of them.)
“ALL OF YOU, ZIP IT FOR A MINUTE!”
My child is not big on getting his diaper changed. He’ll do it, but you have to bribe him (I’ve gone so far as to give him five bucks to get the job done. Yes, I AM ashamed.) Or beg him. Or finally just break down and put him in a fancy wrestling hold to do it.
Negotiation can be a good tool for any toddler. So once I finished getting Jaxon ready on Sunday—it only took me 20 minutes to convince him to do it—I declared that there was simply no way an politician who has anything to do with being involved in a war could have possibly parented a toddler.
“Honest to God, if I can negotiate a diaper change with my son, there is simply no reason whatsoever we should still be in Iraq.”
Yeah, you moms out there, you know what I mean. There is no way it can be as hard to be diplomatic with other adults as it is to convince a toddler that they really do not want to sit around in a dirty diaper, or dip the soap in the toilet and suck on it, or any number of impossible toddler things that happen on a daily basis.
Upon leaving my cousins on Sunday afternoon she said, “I hope you weren’t bored.” Are you kidding me?!
Janelle Verke is the Managing Editor of the Hermantown Star. She can be reached at