Yesterday my 4-year-old pulled my pants down in public.
We were at the paint store buying stain for the swingset (fret not, there will be a photo of that later). I was wearing workout shorts – you know, because that’s when you wear your exercise clothing – when you are painting.
I don’t normally wear shorts. It’s rarely hot enough in Seattle anyway, but that aside, my pasty white legs are best kept under wraps. You’re welcome.
So when my daughter was standing next to me at the checkout, apparently she became intrigued when she saw my bare-skinned legs glowing at her. So she touched them. I jumped a little because it tickled. That was all the ammo she needed.
The next logical step in her mind was to stick her hand straight up my shorts. Not an innocent toddler-like stroking. More of an aggressive ‘Imma make Mommy jump by tickling her butt and pulling on her panties’ maneuver.
It worked. I jumped. I also couldn’t help laughing, because apparently my bum is ticklish. Do what you wish with this information.
This was exactly the reaction she was hoping for. I tried my best to quell her behavior by removing her hand and telling her to stop. In between my giggles. But I could see the purposeful look in her eyes and knew the best course of action would be to leave the premises as soon as humanly possible.
As I went to sign my receipt, my savvy child saw an opening and went back in for more ass-grabbing.
The unfortunate series of events that followed are no doubt among my least attractive public moments ever. And I have had many.
In her quest to tickle my tushy, she inadvertently – or perhaps intentionally – yanked on my elastic-waisted shorts. I grabbed them in time to avoid a full moon, but I’m pretty sure the old man behind us could tell you the color of my granny panties.
My daughter was still tickling me at this point so I was also laughing. Not cute laughter. More like open mouth guffawing. Which in turn caused me to drool on the counter.
You would think that would have been mortifying, but I was so distracted and intent on getting the hell out of there that all I could do was grab my bag and run away from my child. She was truly chasing me out of the store.
This whole scene was so chaotic and un-parental that I’m just hoping the checkout clerk assumed I was a babysitter. A 37-year-old babysitter.
As I reflected back upon this public de-pantsing, it occurred to me that it represents a new world order. One in which I now have a child who is smart and strong enough to take advantage of me in moments of weakness. Gone are the days when discipline was as simple as enforcing toy-sharing rules, or dealing with a tantrum.
Now I run the risk of being overpowered or outwitted by my charming, mischief-loving child.
Don’t get me wrong. If it came down to brute force, I could totally take her. Unless she’s just eaten chocolate. Then it’s best to steer clear for at least 30 minutes until the
cocaine chocolate has coursed through her veins.
In short, I am no longer just an offensive player – it’s time to hone my defensive skills.
First and foremost, start belting my shorts.