Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Izzy, the chocolate lover.

Isabelle is the coolest chick I know. She's moody, she's mouthy, she hates holding hands, and she despises being told "no." She 
Roman is the most sensitive person I know. Usually in the time it takes to eat dinner he asks for a hug about 4 times each from Jason and I. The boy loves to hug. If he had one dollar, he would give you all of that and then go find a penny for you, too. He's going to be such a doting, romantic-just like Mr. P. 

I've often wondered how Izzy might feel about Roman and I whisking off all day for his appointments and on Tuesday she asked. "Can I go with you today?" I tried to explain that it was "clinic day" where we see a lot of doctors and that it would be very long. She said to me, "What if Roman gets scared? He'll want me there." It was the cutest thing I have ever heard. It was the most sincere expression of sibling love I have ever witnessed. "Ok, you can go." I said. We laid out a few ground rules, packed a few toys, said goodbye to daddy and Sullivan and loaded in the car. 
Once we had been in the car about 15 minutes I heard the first, "are we there yet?" And we talked about how I will let her know when we are there and asking me again will not bode very well for her. Okay, so maybe I just thought that last part. But, she withheld the question again for about an hour. A minor win on my part, if I say so myself. 

After 3 hours, we were there. And while I was putting Roman in the stroller she had taken the liberty of putting her backpack on, and carrying Roman's. "Hi, I gave birth to a saint-what have you done with your life?" I felt like asking the nice young valet man. But, instead we just went to Spina Bifida clinic. We sat for 3 hours in that room and she was perfectly behaved. Polite to the doctors, shared with her brother, played with her games almost the whole time. Again, I won the daughter lottery. 

Before we left I had to run downstairs to sign something and have a quick appointment with an ortho guy for a  meet and greet with Roman. The kids were getting antsy. Hunger, boredom and nap time were quickly taking over. My saints were showing their irritability, but at the promise of a chocolate doughnut they kept it together very well. (Roman and I always treat ourselves to a doughnut after our clinic days. It's become a bit of a tradition, and we were excited to share it with Izzy.) 
We were finally in the last doctor's office of the day and I was updating him on the this and thats of Roman's mobility. I had heard a minor bickering between them and said, "Guys, we're almost done-let's be nice." I turned towards the doctor to hopefully finish our conversation when I heard, "GET AWAY FROM MY CRAYONS!" I tried to stop it...Lord knows I tried. But I was too late. Isabelle had turned on me. In one quick swoop she had elbowed her brother in the face and sent him swirling backward into a stack of metal pediatric walkers. All of which fell on his head. The doctor and I unburied Roman to find him unharmed but very upset. I picked him up while gently scolding Isabelle. "Don't scream at her-the doctor is watching" is all I could tell myself.
I held Roman close to me, quickly examined him once again and he settled down right away. I apologized to the doctor and explained that they had a long day. Before he could deliver his reply Roman had both grabbed Isabelle's hair and smacked her simultaneously while screaming, "YOU'RE MEAN! YOU'RE MEAN!!" Which of course threw her into a rage and promptly ended our visit with that nice man. 
Even though the last few moments in the hospital were anything but saint-like, they still got their doughnuts. They had been wonderful all day, and I knew they would pass out as soon as the last bite had gone down. For Roman, that proved true before his doughnut was finished. He left half of it in his lap and passed out. Izzy,  was next. 
It was nothing but me, the radio, an open highway and a soggy, half eaten chocolate doughnut. Don't judge me. All moms do it. 
A mere 30 minutes from home I had to stop for drinks. Isabelle had woken up and for 15 minutes all I could hear were begs, pleads, cries for some apple juice. What kind of mother was I? The second I stopped the car, Roman woke up. He looked down at his doughnut. He scanned the doughnut. He checked the ceiling, the surrounding seat..panic stricken he sent a sneer Izzy's way. I knew what was going to happen next. "Where's my chockwit do-nut?" 
I couldn't very well say, "Look dude, if you fall asleep it's fair game." I had to fess up and tell him the truth. "It fell on the floor, it's yucky caca. Mommy will get you some more chocolate." Which was of course followed by the screeching sound of, "NOT FAIR. I WANT SOME TOO!" 
I ran inside the store, grabbed two blue bug juices and one little bag of chocolates. Two for Izzy, two for Roman and one for momma. I felt like I had sugared them up enough that I could get through the last 30 minutes with zero interruptions, outbursts or sibling rivalry. 

"Mom, Roman isn't eating his chocolate." 
"Yes, he is, Isabelle. He's just taking his time."
"Roman, can I have your chocolate." 
"Roman...can I have your chocolate?"
"No. Roman's chockwit."
At this point Isabelle had utilized a "gotcha" technique that we use on Roman all the time. You see, if we pretend to cry, Roman will do anything we want. 
I.E "Wahhh Roman won't give me a hug. Waahh" --Mission: Hugged. 
"Wahhh heh heh heeehhh wahh Roman won't close the fridge door and stay out of it." -Bam! Closed.
"Wahh ahhh wahhhh Roman mommy needs that blanket and I can't reach it. Waaah!!" Hello blanket!

If he thinks you're sad, upset or really crying he will do anything within his power to make your tears stop. Regardless of the fake mission at hand, he has one stipulation. All services rendered at the time of your crying must be met with several hugs from him. He NEEDS hugs. The child NEEEDS to HUG. 

So I hear hear, "Waaahh! wahhh! Roman won't give me his chocolate! wahhh wahhhh!"
Instantly he replies with, 'HERE! HERE! CHOCK-WIT! TAKE CHOCK-WIT! HUG! HUG! HUG!" 
Roman and I will forevermore fly solo on our clinic days. Amen. 

(I made her give the chocolate back.) 


  1. Great article, how do you feel this will be affected in the future? I’m glad I stumbled across this website!
    siblings rivalry

  2. Bless your face Erica. Bless it totally.

  3. Erica, your a great mom... and have the patience of a saint.. quite a writer too... maybe you can write your memoirs, Im sure theres a lot of parents who get the strength they need to carry on by reading what you write....Your Uncle Jack and I are amazed every time we read what you write... your children are very lucky to have parents like you..take care
    ... Love Auntie Doreen

  4. I always love hearing your stories (especially of those cute kiddo's of yours). And I LOVED this post, Erica! :) I need to come home... right now and squeeze you all.