She Says the Darndest Things

Remember that show "Kids Say the Darndest Things" with Art Linkletter, where he'd interview kids and they'd all say outrageous, hilarious things?  The best was when they'd say something that you knew had to embarrass their parents.

If you don't remember it, it's because that show is from back when there was no color in the world and everything was in black and white and tones of gray, as evidenced by the black and white pictures and movies and TV shows.  You know what I'm talking about.

Sometimes I email funny stories about the kids to my mom, and she in turn sends them in to the editor of the Bulletin Board column in the St. Paul Pioneer Press.  Bulletin Board is a collection of random human interest stories, sent in by readers.  Both these stories about Aliza recently made it into print.

A couple of weeks ago I was putting away clothes, and I brought a pile into Aliza's room for her to put away.  I take them out of her room, wash, dry, and sort.  All she has to do is hang them up or stuff them into a drawer.  I really don't think I'm overworking her here, but feel free to disagree.

I went in a few minutes later to check on her progress and she is only on her second or third shirt, sighing heavily.  "It's like yesterday was my last day as a kid," she declares.

"Why is that?"  I ask, I must admit unsympathetically.
"Because I'm having to hang up my own clothes."

At NASA, last June.

The second story occurred just about a week ago.  Aliza and I were headed out to the American Girl Bistro for dinner, just her and I.  It wouldn't have been my first choice, but I let her pick.  I was intending to tell her about her premutation carrier status.  I found out actually a couple of years back that she is a carrier of the Fragile X gene, but I hadn't told her yet.  I took some time to deal with that this meant for her future, and at the International Fragile X Conference last month, I decided I really needed to have this talk with her.  She is old enough to understand and I was beginning to feel like I was keeping something from her.

So I planned for a mother-daughter dinner, and allowed her to pick her favorite restaurant.  She likes the American Girl Bistro because you can bring your doll along and she sits at the table and has a tiny, doll-sized meal and drink and dessert right along with you.  It's adorable.

Anyway we left the house distractly, and realized halfway to the Mall of America that we had forgotten to bring along one of her dolls.  She looked like she was going to have a breakdown.  I did an internal eye roll.  Oh good grief.  Was this going to overshadow our whole meal and chat?

Then I remembered something.  "You know, you can borrow a doll there, to sit at the table and have dinner with us."

It's true.  They have a whole shelf full of dolls in little pink highchairs that you can pick from.

Aliza looked doubtful.  "Well, it'll be weird, having dinner with a doll I don't know," she replied.

So she and I took a stranger doll out for a blind date.

And our talk, about her carrier status?  Completely uneventful.  It was literally about 90 seconds of our whole hour and a half dinner conversation.  She wanted to know what it meant, and I told her that right now really, it didn't mean anything.  I told her when she's older it could mean that she'd have kids with Fragile X too.  And she shrugged her shoulders at that.  I am raising a child who, so far, thinks that having a kid with Fragile X is not a big deal.

Going to have to think about that one.

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