This is the story of the time my youngest son tried to help me make dinner and my eternal quest to not curse in front of the children.
My youngest is a giant among the two and a half year old crowd, but even still he is just shorter than the kitchen counter. He looooooves the kitchen counter. The counter holds food both salty and sweet, snackable and meal type alike. He wanted to see what sort of culinary joy I was a bringing him. He wanted to see it right. friggin. now.
So he got a stool. A tiny little stepping stool we picked up at Ikea years ago. It and I have never had a problem before.
The kid hauls it from the opposite side of the house to the kitchen, pushes me out of the way of the counter and drops it.
Now, the stool doesn’t weigh anything. However, my toddler, most toddlers really, has a distinct Jason Borne ability to turn anything into something that will, can, and must hurt another human.
The stool landed on my foot with a thud.
“Whoop. Sorry, daddy.” The toddler said, realizing I was indeed a human and the stool was not meant to land on my foot.
I was internally screaming.
He was looking over the counter and taking tomato slices for his own.
There’s a moment following a “why did that hurt?” injury, a moment when you can feel the bruise forming, swelling is happening like the eyeball scene from (the better) Total Recall, and the world slows just a little bit. Usually I encounter this moment after attempting to clean gutters, fix sprinklers, mow the yard, move lumber from one spot to another. Usually, this is a solitary moment and by golly do I swear.
The kid stared right at me, waiting to make sure I was okay.
Not one under the breath curse was uttered. I was okay-ish, but if there’s anything I’m going to teach my children it is to bury emotion.
“Yeah, bud. How’s that tomato?” I ask, avoiding the issue.
“Good,” he replied. He then hopped off the stool, picked it up and left the kitchen.
Even then, not one under the breath curse was uttered.
My eternal quest of self censorship is going quite in my favor these days.