love bites…

while i have picked up some ‘tricks of the trade’ when it comes to working with other people’s kids…it is a whole different ballgame when it comes to my own…

basically, when it comes to herding (my own) cats, i have no idea what i’m doing…

sure, in the past, i’ve been kicked, punched, elbowed, grabbed, pushed, bitten, scratched, spit at, and swore at by young people in my charge…but, i hadn’t experienced any of these shenanigans by the little ones i had helped bring into the world, by my own offspring …until they started biting…it was something i wasn’t ready for and it rattled my cage a bit…

my son was the primary offender…and this kind of thing happened a lot before he could really talk or make words or knew how to show affection…at this time, if he was excited he would run at you (full speed), tackle you, and bite you–hard…often times, i felt like one of those poor victims attacked by the angst-ridden, brooding, pale-faced vampire kids in the twilight series…anyways, in one of his most exuberant fun-loving moments, my son bit his cousin–his cousin didn’t feel the love…so, we separated my son from his cousin and i gave my son a stern word…but, was that enough?

my daughter, of course, was not to be upstaged by my son’s antics…so, one day, she took her own pound of flesh…it was a day that started out as a normal one in our household …we had just finished a breakfast that included thawed/toasted/ buttered/syrupy waffles, diced fruit, milk, and random three-day-old cheerios that the kids scraped off the kitchen floor…

satiated, my daughter and i were playing on the living room floor, having a good ole time wrestling around and laughing…at one point during the melee, i rolled over to hide from her saying, “where did daddy go?”–and then it happened–she bit me, right between the shoulder blades–it hurt…so, i squawked, i screamed, i yelled– “stop it, let go!”…in my insulated, child-proof cranium it went more like “stop it, let fuckin’ go!” (it was a minor miracle that i didn’t shout it out loud) anyways, while she was clamped down on the skin of my back, i was twisting and turning–trying to reach behind me and grab ahold of her…but, she was elusive and determined and i couldn’t quite reach her…as i flailed about on the ground, images of jurassic park filled my head–you know the part, where the guy is mauled by the flesh-eating baby dinosaurs…

i was thinking–i’m not going make it out of here alive

somehow, i endured and survived and got loose of her…i told her, “don’t do that” and she cried –i thought what just happened? why do they keep biting? what can we do to make them stop?  what else could i do besides separating them and giving them a stern word? 

then, i thought back to the day when we first picked up our twins at that curiosity shop in chinatown…now, what did that guy tell me?!

no, but seriously, i realized that there are some things in life that there isn’t a playbook for, or instructions not included moments…i also realized, hey, these guys are one–what do they know? they like you, they bite you…that’s how they show their affection, their love–they’ve got love bites…it’s a phase…we’re movin’ on…

6 responses

  1. Another great post! It also got me thinking of those big kids you mention who exhibited the Same kind of biting behavior as your non-speaking one year olds…maybe they too couldn’t find the words to express all that was going on and somehow your love for them got through and you were safe enough to bite. Knowing the level of care and in envestment you gave to those older youth that came under your watch, I wouldn’t be surprised if some of your knocks didn’t have Lot to do with speachless kids trying to express a similar sentiment as your one year olds! Thanks for starting my day!


    • kt…

      thanks for the comments, insightful as always–i think you’re onto something there…and, i would agree that there is a version of that behavior that rears its head among the the big kids too–i can think of several instances where that was true…and reminds me of stories to tell when i move a bit further down my timeline (especially in regards to juvenile justice)…

      have a good one!


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