(Bonus cool points if you got the SNL reference in the title.)
My soon-to-be three-year-old daughter Savannah has a birthmark on her forehead. It wasn’t there when she was born, but showed up around 2 weeks later and continued to get bigger and darker. For a while, we couldn’t go a single day without someone (usually both children and adults) commenting or somewhat rudely asking about it. I’m sure you other parents out there enjoy constantly explaining your child’s physical appearance to strangers as much as I do.
The mark, officially called a hemangioma, is slowly disappearing, but about once a week we still get asked about it. I almost feel like a robot as I say my canned response in a monotone voice, “it’s just a birthmark.”
About a month ago we went to visit my mom in the hospital after she broke her leg horseback riding. A nurse looked at Savvy’s face and said in that faux pouty/sing-songy voice people use to talk to babies, “Oooh, did someone get an ouchie on her forehead?”
And as I waited to see if she would explain the birthmark herself or look to me to do it, Savvy got this serious look on her face, took a deep breath, looked the nurse dead in the eye and said somberly, “…I fell down the stairs…” then quickly lowered her eyes back to her lap as she let her shoulders slump.
I was like, “EXCUSE ME?!” With the level of drama in her body language, she may as well have said “Mommy wasn’t watching me, she was drinking beer and smoking Virginia Slims with her boyfriend Ron.”
So I have a pretty little liar on my hands.
It reminded me of this story from ten or fifteen years ago when my mom and I were in a bookstore in Chicago. She picked out some books for my nieces and nephews and one for herself. As we walked to the car, she realized she still had the children’s books tucked under her arm and had only paid for hers. Because I am a pillar of morality, I was like, “Who cares, we’re like a thousand miles awayyy. Let’s just go to the carrrrrr.” *nasal Kardashian voice*
But because she tried to raise me to be a conscientious person, she insisted that we go back. We walked through the door and straight to the checkout counter. Just as my mother opened her mouth to explain her mistake and pay for the books, I looked at her sternly and said loudly, “Tell them what you did!”
She gave me a confused look for a split second then we both burst out laughing and the poor clerk just stood there staring blankly. Probably wishing we would leave.
So I guess what I’m saying is, Savvy is already much funnier than me at a much younger age. I feel both proud and afraid, as all parents are when they realize their children are just like them…right down to their expressions:
*I also get a kick out of doing this sort of thing to my husband, which you can read about in this post about our hike in Scottsdale.