Being maman is great. When I get home from work, there's a stampede of little feet, and then I'm hit with a hip-high embrace, tiny chin tipped up, smiling. It's a red-carpet welcome, and I am a VIP in my own home.
There are moments when it's a bit tough to be so popular, however. Like Saturday mornings, when I get my own personal wake-up call. Sometimes I'm lucky, and le Petit will wait patiently for me to make an appearance, singing and telling himself stories in his crib while I doze in the other room. Eventually, however, he remembers that it is a new day and somebody is missing.
I roll over in bed and poke my husband. "You'd better go get him." He usually gets up without complaint, knowing well that he'll be able to climb right back in bed a moment later, since this strategy invariably buys me no more than two extra minutes.
If I don't take my cue and get up, le Petit comes into our bedroom, grabs my arm and pulls. "Read a book, read a book!" or "On va marcher [we're going to walk]," he insists.
"Maman dodo," I protest. Mommy's sleeping. He pulls on my arm harder, then starts stripping the sheets off the bed. If that doesn't work, he yanks the pillow out from under my head.
Once I'm awake and ambulatory, I'd better take a few minutes to sit on the couch with le Petit and read a story or help with a puzzle. A moment alone with Mommy at the beginning of the day helps the rest of the morning go smoothly. I usually enjoy it, too, even if I do beg a second to go put a pot of coffee on the stove.
"On va mettre les chaussons!" On mornings when we're having just too much fun together for Mommy to leave, le Petit brings me my slippers and insists I put them on. Mommy in chaussons means Mommy's not going to work. Very smart, my fan club.