Monday, November 22, 2010

Call an Ambulance—Surely Someone Is Dying


Do you know what happens when only one Leapster is working?  When you have two 3-year-old boys—and only one working Leapster?

Well, let me tell you this.  The kid who gets the short end of the stick in that deal is determined to let the ENTIRE WORLD know that he has been wronged in the most grievous possible way.  If the neighbors were wondering what the high-pitched keening and wailing coming from our house was all about, weeeeelllll, here’s the short version.

After scraping together enough batteries to get both machines in working order, I proudly handed the boys their games, with a smile of triumph on my face because of the fix-it feat I had managed to pull off.  And do you know that those things take 4 (count them, FOUR) batteries each?  That meant that I had to remove batteries from several household items in order to get fully functioning Leapsters.  But hey, I’m that kind of mom.  I’m willing to make the sacrifice for my kids.

Anyway.  So I thought I had the wretched things fixed when I handed them over to the boys.  I left them playing their games contentedly on the couch next to their sister who was evidently texting an entire thesis to her BFF du jour.  I then snuck up the stairs to attempt (that word is key here) to do a load of laundry.

I had no sooner lifted the lid to the washing machine when I heard…hmmm…how do I even describe it?  Have you ever heard, say, a tone-deaf sheep attempting to hit a high note?  Yeah, me either, but either that’s what was in my living room, or something dreadful was happening.  Like maybe the boogie man had snuck in and started yanking Jordan’s fingernails out one by one or something equally as awful.

So I ran—braless, I might add, because I had just gotten into my comfortable house clothes, which do not necessarily require as much support as my work attire—as fast as I could down the stairs, because I was sure that with the amount of wailing I was hearing that someone must surely be dying.

Ok, think.  Assess the situation.  I am an emergency first responder.  WAIL!!!  OM-Gawd, what the heck is going on down there?!

I finally made it to the bottom of the stairs, and for the record, I’m fairly sure that gravity has taken an irreversible toll on certain parts of my body because of that sprint.  And what do you think I saw at the bottom of the stairs?  A burglar?  An axe murderer?  A kidnapper?

Nope.  Not even close.  Here’s what I witnessed.  I witnessed the complete and utter meltdown of the 3-year-old who happened to get the Leapster that quit working.  Jordan was curled into a ball, while still standing, if that’s even possible.  It was sort of a wilted hunchback look, and he was just looking at the game and wailing.  Wail-ing.  A lot.  And loudly.

I quickly used my fix-it knowledge to attempt to remedy the situation.  I took the Leapster and shook it.  Nothing.  Then I tapped it (maybe slightly less than gently).  Then I turned it off and turned it back on.  With each failed attempt, the wailing got louder and the hunchback situation grew more dire.  His head was literally hanging by his knees, so that he was bent over in this impossible position, but he refused to budge.

And do you know what happens when you tell that same kid that he’ll have to wait until Daddy gets home so that he can hook it up to his computer and reset it?  Good guess!  Utter and complete chaos.

And even better yet, every time Jadon would laugh or get excited about something that his fully functioning game would do, Jordan would get even more upset.  The world is a cruel, cruel place when there is only one working handheld game.

But do you know what I learned?  I learned that if you go ahead and do the laundry anyway, it gets really hard to hear the wailing over the dryer.  And I also learned that I’m going to need to improve my Leapster repair skills, because this cannot happen again.

No comments: