May 11

My Normal Trixaholic

It’s good to know my son is normal.  Noble is always shocking us with how smart, creative, and physically able he is.  From remembering jokes and being able to retell them with genius timing, to coloring in the lines, to throwing a ball so hard at my crotch that it pops a testicle. (That’s a figure of speech – ok? My testicles are just fine.  *insert macho posture*)

At the grocery store, though, Noble showed me that he’s still a typical four year old.  Everything started out fantastic. We had a small list so we both grabbed a hand basket.  I promised him we’d go straight to the cereal aisle so he could put his box of Trix in his basket.  He’s a Trixaholic. We were talking, having good conversation about yeti’s and muffins, and swinging our baskets to the beat of the music playing throughout the store. This was a great grocery store experience!

And then the Trix entered his basket.

The behavior change was instant.  He went from well behaved angel to that idiot college friend we all knew that disregarded all human decency for a good time laughy laugh;  running around grabbing stuff, leaving his basket behind, not wanting to listen, yelling, pretending to drink medicine.  And I turned from proud father, enjoying grocery shopping, to the Parental Tourettes guy trying to capture a cracked out chicken- “No.  Put that down.  We don’t do that! Listen. You’re not listening!  Come here please!  That’s medicine!  Don’t you dare pull out your pee pee! Stop!  Get your butt over here right now!”

My requests went from trying to be nice, to demanding, and finally to throwing down with a consequence.  His consequence for being a class A shitstick?  NO TRIX!  I threatened him with Trix removal three times until I finally realized that this kid wasn’t gonna learn anything unless I followed through.  I actually contemplated walking out without any groceries.  But I had a 6 pack of beer and some ingredients Gayle needed for dinner, and I was gonna need that beer later.

It was in the dairy aisle that I created the monster. My last nerve was worked over, so I pulled the Trix out of the basket and placed it amongst the spreadable butters, while proclaiming, “You just lost your Trix.” I wasn’t interested in weakening my point by walking all the way over to the cereal aisle.  I wanted to dump that box off right then and there. My apologies to the Vons stocker team for that.

From the spreadable butters, to the checkout stand, through paying and out the door, Noble screamed and cried. “I want Trix!  Triiiiiiiix.  Triiiiiiix.  GIMME MY TRIX! YOU GIMME MY TRIX BACK RIGHT NOW!” I can’t be sure he actually took a single breath, because the cries were nonstop.

I mostly said nothing. I managed to try out a few parentisms, “Knock it off!” and “You chose this for yourself.” But his ears were turned off, with the only thing allowed being, “OK, let’s get those trix!” I said nothing as we were loading groceries at the check out and while I was paying.  The one exception was to correct the check out ladies assumption that I “wasn’t getting him something”.

More for Noble to hear, I said, “No, he got Trix.  We had the Trix. But his behavior told me he didn’t want it anymore.”

The walk to the car was interesting, if not humiliating.  It felt, as the sliding doors revealed us to the outside, as though we were celebrities walking to our car.  All eyes were on us.  What did he do to that poor screaming child, asked the people without kids.  Wonder what that kid did to his dad, asked the people with kids. With his hand stretched out toward the store entrance, in futile attempts to summon the Trix box via some jedi trick, Noble screamed “Triiiiiiiiixxxxxx” over and over again.

Sanctuary was in the car, waiting for me.  Finally! The walk of embarrassment to the car seemed long, but the second those doors closed, and the outside world was no longer watching….it was my turn! I plead the 5th.

Good to know my son is normal, though.  I have the high blood pressure to prove it.

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