Games I Regret: Remote Control Mommy

Jason loves pushing buttons – elevator buttons, baby toy buttons, doorbells, and the list goes on and on. But surprisingly, he’s never been that interested in playing with the tv remote control (or ‘remote and the troll’ in his vernacular). At least, he wasn’t interested in remote controls before I invented the game ‘Remote Control Mommy.’ You can probably see where this is going. So, Jason pushes a button and I say, “oh, you pushed the walk backwards button. mommy has to walk backwards.” This was fun for the first five minutes. But as all parents know, once a child finds a game he/she likes, five minutes doesn’t cut it and they want to repeat the activity endlessly. It wasn’t long before I invented new actions prompted by the buttons – things like “the coffee button: mommy has to make coffee now” and “the silent button: we can’t talk for 2 minutes.” Those didn’t go over as well so Jason took it upon himself to dictate what action the button should elicit. Usually this resulted in the standard turn round-and-round or clap your hands, but then he got more advanced, referring to buttons as “the leprechaun button” (um, what am I supposed to do?) and the “chirp-si-doe button” (um, the what?). And then it occurred to me why the remote control never held much interest for him: when he pressed the buttons without pointing it at the tv (which was nearly all the time) he didn’t get any feedback, nothing happened. But with Remote Control Mommy, not only was he getting a response, he was getting the best response of all: my undivided attention. I guess I can’t regret the game too much.

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