“Daddy, I can get myself out of the bath.”

“OK, but don’t monkey around. The floor’s slippery and you ‘ll fall and get hurt.”

A few minutes later, I was upstairs reading with Thelonious when I heard… thump, bump, CRASH! Wahhh!!!! Being a good parent, the first thing I did was yell, “I told you not to monkey around! I TOLD you that you would get hurt!!!” Just once I want to be recognized for being right.

Well, poor little Donut really messed up her lil foot. It was all scraped and bloody. And, in typical form, she squeezed every ounce of drama out of the injury that she possibly could.

This morning she picked out her own outfit – which did not include shoes. I insisted. She insisted. She claimed she had tried every pair of shoes and they were all unbearably painful due to her fresh injury. I tried to be a good parent again and insisted she was lying through her teeth and needed to put on her shoes. In the end, she settled on a pair of ugg-type boots that are way too big for her and have slippery soles – I think they might be slippers. We argued about the boots three different times before we even left for preschool.

As we walked to class, she purposefully twisted her feet all up and half walked out of the boots so that she looked like a crippled lil tibetan limping to class. She pouted and moped. “Daddy, these boots are TOO slippery! Daddy, these boots are TOO big!!!” Being a good parent, I said, “Ya, I know! I told you that back at the house! What do you want me to do about it now???” Her lower lip stuck out and quivered. “Go home and get my brown shoes with the straps and the pink flowers.

Twelve minutes later the guy with the shaved head, pierced nose, and too many tattoos, wearing a t-shirt with a hand gun on it surrounded by the words “know your rights”, pulled the family mini-van back into the preschool parking lot and snuck back into the classroom, explaining to all the other moms that the shoes Ione was wearing just weren’t right.

I realize God is teaching me something about vanity and pride and humility.

Hello, God? It’s me Jim. I’ve learned my lesson. Please let me be young and good looking again.