Jealousy Can Push One To Do Strange Things
Megan Pettit shares stories from a new mom
Daddy is officially my son’s favourite parent. I knew it was coming. I saw the signs. We can both make Jr. laugh, but it’s Daddy who usually gets the I’m-laughing-but-I’m-not-making-a-sound-just-shaking-because-it’s-so-funny laughs while I usually get the pity tee-hees. We can both rock our son to sleep at night, but it’s usually Daddy’s rocking that takes Jr. to Zzz town. I was coming to terms with all of this, but what happened last week was too much for my heart to bare.
After spending a weekend tearing up our basement and only getting to see my son for two hours or less a day during the week, I realised I needed to take some time off school to be with my family. It was getting hard to focus on respiratory pathologies when all I could think about were fish kisses from my lil’ man. And different kinds of kisses from my big man. I decided to stay home from school for a few days so my family could enjoy my company, and my classmates could enjoy some time away from me.
Jr. spends a few mornings during the week at a caregiver’s place around the corner from us. My husband says Jr. cries when he drops him off and he cries when he’s picked up. This made us want to cry until George did a little spying and saw that Jr. instantly dries up and parties with the other kids until it’s time to go home. My husband said it’s really cute seeing Jr. interact with the children right before he notices his dad’s there and tries to hold back the tears.
“His little chin goes and everything,” George said.
I was really excited to see this on my day off from school.
“He’ll be so happy to see his mommy picking him up,” My husband said right before we got our son.
I peeked through the window and saw Jr. playing behind a baby in a high chair. George was right, he did look happy. George was also right when he said our son gets sad when it’s time to leave. As soon as Jr. saw us he started to cry. Not chin quivering whimpers, but big, sad sobs. I knelt down while our child ran towards us and just as I opened my arms to embrace him, he swatted my hand away with such force that I lost my balance and tumbled sideways. My arm was blocking his path to Daddy.
I regained composure as the caregiver laughed and said, “He’s a Daddy’s boy!”
While jealously surged through my veins, I grabbed the closest baby and swooped him up.
“Uh-oh. Looks like Mommy is ready for another baby!” The caregiver said while still laughing, probably not realising I am crazy enough to scoop up a random baby just to make my son as jealous as he was making me.
I took the next day off and did everything my son wanted to do. I read a cat book 80 times, stacked blocks until my fingers shook and danced while holding him until my arms burned. That Saturday I did it again. Sunday too. By Sunday night, after Jr. took a dive off the couch face first onto the floor, he didn’t push me away when I opened my arms to comfort him. I am not his favourite parent, but at least I’m on par with Daddy.
Megan Pettit is a mother, student, forklift driver, wife and failed gardener. She is married to George Pettit of Alexisonfire.
Photos via Megan Pettit