We were having an amazing vacation on Cape Cod the week after Labor Day and everything was going even better than we expected. The sun was shining, the beach wasn’t crowded, and all three members of the family were in a great mood at the exact same time. Wolfy was having a blast playing in waves, playing in the sand, and making little friends on the beach.
My husband and I were sitting in the warm shallow water, talking about nothing when… Wham! Out of nowhere something smashed into the back of my skull with incredible force.
Pain instantly bloomed deep in my head and radiated outward. Wolfy had launched a rock the size of a small meteor right at my head from pointblank range. Seriously, when I saw the rock in the water, it was so big I don’t even know how Wolfy had the strength to pick it up, let alone throw it.
Triumphantly he yelled, “I threw a big black rock at Mommy!”
It hurt so bad that I doubled over and tears filled my eyes. Wolfy thought this extreme reaction was hilarious.
“Great!” my husband joked, “I guess this is the birth of a psychopath.”
And I thought to myself, “Well, there goes a nice day at the beach. This day is totally ruined.”
I’m no supermom but after the pain began to subside, I immediately forgave Wolfy. I don’t believe that he was intentionally trying to hurt me.
I think this was just another wacky toddler experiment.
This one would have the title: What Happens When I Slam a Giant Rock into My Mom’s Head? Result: She doubles over in pain, crying, swearing, and generally making a spectacle of herself on the beach and this is really funny.
He could file it along with other experiments such as: What Happens When I Pull the Cat’s Tail as Hard as I Can? Result: She scratches the shit out of me.
And another favorite: What Happens When I Pinch Papa Over and Over and Over Again? Result: He will keep threatening to put me in time-out and eventually he might follow through on his threats but only with great reluctance.
I honestly think that Wolfy thought the whole rock throwing thing was a big joke. So, I picked him up and talked to him. I told him what he’d done and how it had made me feel. I made him promise to never, ever do something like that again.
And then he understood. He stopped laughing and actually told me he was sorry.
Then he sang me songs and gave me kisses on the spot that hurt. I realized that he was doing the things to me that I do to him when he gets hurt. After each song or each kiss, he’d ask me, “Mommy, did I make you feel better?”
Maybe Wolfy has another file of experiments.
This one could be titled: Can I Make a Hurt Person Feel Better? Result: If I sing songs and give them kisses, they will instantly feel completely better.
I know Wolfy has many other experiments in this file. They involve all the positive recognition he gets from smiling, giving kisses, singing the ABCs, sharing his toys, and making new friends on the beach.
So, maybe my husband and I are not raising a psychopath after all. It’s entirely possible that we are actually raising a sweet, compassionate, social, little boy; just one that occasionally throws rocks and pulls tails just to keep it all interesting.