Today on Why My Coffee is Cold we talk about moles…
I wish I was making this up. It’s incredible to think back on my naivety and how I imagined adulthood would be. I thought I would own a beautiful house with beige furniture and have spotless granite counter tops and white walls. I believed we’d sit at a long dinning room table with candles and seasonal centerpieces I made from Pinterest DIY boards. In my adult life fantasy, I would enjoy my coffee on my back-porch swing while my children fed carrots to some local deer. We would name them and pretend they were our own.
Now my walls are white with shades of grey where my magic eraser did not magically or even fully erase the permanent maker art. I rent because unless I hit the lottery, this is the millennial social worker fate I have chosen. Today’s high-top table centerpiece is a lime green bug catcher with some dried up leaves and the carcass of a long dead earth worm. Of all my misconceptions I think my wildlife interactions were probably the most far fetched.
There are times when I doubt my ability to parent.
Today I had no such doubt. I was feeling like mom of the year, like the mom I imagined I would be. My house was clean, breakfast made, my son was literally eating avocado toast while doing homework. If you’re shocked by his refined palette, please be aware his food selection is based solely on his favorite color. As luck would have it, this year green is in and I am loading him with as my veggies as possible before orange Dye-4 is the new black. I was sitting down in my writing nook with my steaming cup of morning happiness when the dog alerted me to an intruder.
Coming from the hallway, where I can only assume he had finished brushing his abnormally large front teeth was a freaking mole.
Yes, a mole came shimmying down my hallway.
I wish I was kidding. We have two cats and at any given door-left-open moment they are liable to bring forest creatures into my house. This is what happens when your children are old enough to operate the locks on your door, they just come and go, inside and outside all day long, they let the cats do the same. Now in a more civilized house this would have been cause for alarm, however in Jumanji camp Slinskey, mole excavating happens so often we have actual protocol for such instances. Liam grabbed the broom while I opened the door to our garden, lecturing him on the importance feline vetting.
“You can’t just let the cats in and out of the house Liam! They are always trying to bring something in here.” He whined that he hadn’t seen any moles.
“I’m not mad at you bud, I just need you to be mindful of who comes in and out.” He looked confused.
“Mindful is just being aware, like always taking the time to look closely at things.” He helped me usher the intruder out onto the porch. God bless his flippered hands and narrow eyes he made it back to the dirt and burrowed himself home.
I was feeling victorious until my small personified version of karma started angrily mumbling.
“What did you say?” I challenged.
“I said you hurt his feelings, you are not the right one”
“The right one for what?”
“You. Are. Not. The. Right. One.” He repeatedly exasperated
For those who are unfamiliar with this particular brand of shit talking, this is how my son has chosen to rebel without swearing. He picks a seemingly innocuous phrase but repeats it with such contempt that you worry you may be fired from parenthood. It rarely means anything and if you’re lucky he will explain his meaning when he has calmed down. Whether it is coincidence or intentional, I’ll never know but he manages to provoke self-doubt with each diss. You are not the right one? The right one of what? Right mom? Mole releaser? What does it all mean? Where did I go wrong?
I let him cool down before I addressed the mole debacle again. Cautiously I entered his bedroom. “Do you want to talk about the mole?” He admitted he had been mad and said he wanted to keep the mole as a pet, I explained that the mole had to return to his family. Later I fact-checked my own lie, apparently, they are the loners of the animal kingdom staying safe in their tunnels and only widening them for mating purposes before hittin it and quittin it back to their own piece of dirt.
We talked about family and the importance of sticking together, I told him how much I’d miss him if he ever left. It was a pure moment and his face seemed to soften, he looked me in my eyes and said, “If you were ‘mine-ful’ you’d know I just wanted that mole.” This is why 5-year olds should not have access to doors or vocabulary, they will use both against you and they will never be mindful of moles.