There are several ways I can always score mom points with Jackson no matter what: take him out for ice cream; let him watch TV; give him a cookie/lollipop/some other thing he probably shouldn’t have too often. Then, there are several ways that I can usually score mom points but not necessarily always: take him on a subway ride; take him to one of his friend’s homes for a play date; give him a present (he’s happy with books, which suits me fine). Today, though, I scored some MAJOR mom points (at least temporarily; I’m sure he’ll forget how cool I am in about an hour).
It was damp and grey and drizzly this morning — not great playground/outside weather — and Jackson is no longer interested in attending Friday morning African dance class, much to my chagrin. All of our friends take various classes Friday mornings, so there wasn’t anyone I could think of to have a play date with. So… I asked Jack what he wanted to do and he said: “Go to the museum and see sharks!” And I was like, “Whaaa?” because I can’t even think of a time we looked at or talked about sharks, let alone a museum with sharks. But I figured the Museum of Natural History on the Upper West Side would probably have something shark-like, and, if not, I knew there would be a ton of dinosaurs to distract him (he’s just getting into dinosaurs). So I told him to give me 15 minutes to get everything ready and we’d go. On our way to the subway, he said, “I’m so excited, Mommy!!” And I said, “What are you excited about?” (It’s always good to ask, because you can never be quite sure what’s on the mind of a 2-year-old; I half-expected him to tell me he was excited to watch “Super Why” later…) But he said: “I’m so excited to go to the museum with YOU.” Um, heart-melt.
So, we went to the museum and we did see some sharks, as well as dinosaurs and lots of animals from Africa. I asked him what his favorite was and he said, “The animals, Mommy!” And I said, “Yes, but which ones were your favorite?” And he said, “All the animals!!” Which is exactly how I would feel if someone asked me to pick my favorite cocktail.
Every day, Jackson tells me how much fun he had with Daddy before he left for work or how much fun he had with Mavis, his sitter, the day before. Last week, our friend Mary babysat one evening and, for days afterward, I heard about how much fun he had with her. But whenever I ask if he has fun with me, he gives a very noncommittal, “Hmmm.” Yesterday, his reply was a more creative, “And Daddy too!” Which isn’t exactly a “Hell, yeah, mom, you’re the bomb.” I mean, it’s not even a “yes.”
Today though, when we got home from the museum, I was taking his shoes and jacket off and Jackson looked at me and said: “I had so much fun with you, Mommy.” And that’s all I need for Mother’s Day this year. I mean, that and an egg and bacon and cheese sandwich would be nice.