As parents, we all have moments when we’re not always paying complete attention to our kids when they’re talking to us. But there are certain key words that always catch our ears.
And that’s what happened to me recently.
There I was, minding my own business trying to do something important like watch wrestling or American Ninja Warrior, and my son was talking to me, or at least I think he was.
“Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, toilet water, blah, blah . . . ”
Whoa! Rewind a sec.
What did you say, I asked.
My son stopped his story and looked at me with a smile. “I said, I tried to bend toilet water one time.”
Well, uh. There’s a comment you don’t hear every day.
Now normally I would be as lost as you are at this moment. But this time I had a little more of an idea of what he was talking about than I normally do.
You see, this summer my daughter introduced my son this animated show called Avatar: The Last Airbender. It’s about, well, it’s about this boy called Aang who is, well, an Avatar who is, well, an Airbender.But not only can he bend air, but he can also bend water, fire, and (you guessed it) water.
Ok, maybe I don’t know as much about it as I thought. But my son loved the show. And after he watched all the shows with my daughter, he wanted me to watch it with him. I tried to put it off as long as I could with some VERY IMPORTANT CHORES, like washing our egg shells and dusting the ice cubes.
Finally I relented, and I have to admit, I’ve been enjoying the show.
But when he mentioned trying to bend the water in the toilet, I was, as you might guess, I trifle concerned.
What did that involve, I asked, as visions of his hands, feet, or tongue swirling around in the toilet bowl.
“Nothing,” he laughed. “I knew it wasn’t real. I was just pretending.”
But some of his comments seem more serious than others. Like the way he woke me up this morning.
I was still lounging in bed, still enjoying the feel of just waking up and not having a care in the world, when he came in my room.
“Dad, I may have some bad news.”
“I’m afraid there may be some blood in the house.”
Ok, except for characters on the Friday the 13th movies, I doubt anyone else in the history of the world has had the pleasure of waking up to that thought.
Must. Stay. Calm. – I repeated to my self several times quickly before answering.
What do you mean, I asked, instantly imagining him practicing juggling with the kitchen knives again.
“I let a lizard in the house, and I’m afraid the cat is going to eat him.”
Whew number 2!
Where’s the lizard now, I asked, relieved.
“He’s behind the couch.”
So I’m still in bed, there’s a lizard behind the couch, and the cat’s hungry. That sounded very much like a problem that could solve itself with me remaining in bed the whole time.
But I suppose it could have been worse. He could have set the cat on fire, and the cat could be behind the couch.
But there would have been an easy solution to that, too. That would have been the perfect time for him to practice those waterbending skills for real.