childhood, family, motherhood

Mae Ploy

It’s funny, the little things that parenting entails. I was talking to the Little Man the other day, about when he really was my little man. 
“I used to make airplane noises to get you to eat.” I told him. 

“Really?” He’s sitting next to me in the car, and out of the corner of the eye I catch the look, and I can hear the incredulous tone. He’s grinning. 

“Really, you weren’t a fan of baby food. Then again, none of you were.” 

Of course, he’s #4. By the time I was coaxing him into eating, I’d already learned that when they were hungry, they’d eat. And that to get a balanced diet in them I sometimes had to be creative. But most of all, I’d learned that baby food in the jars isn’t really necessary. Safe feeding of big people food is fine. Also, I didn’t want them to become picky. 

I’m laughing at myself, sitting here, and shaking my head. That last didn’t work. They all found their pickiness, and clung to it. Still do. The Little Man? Such a stereotype, he’s all about his chicken nuggets! 

Which is why my evening included my amusing myself at dinnertime. 

The Little Man’s school this semester – and indeed, for the foreseeable two years until he graduates – involves online classes at a community college. The plan involves an Associates in Computer Science at the same time I issue him his homeschool high school diploma. He likes the plan, and he’s enthusiastic about classes this semester. It’s all very non-traditional and it suits him to a T. This semester, he hasn’t got a class that starts before 9 am, and he has a couple of evening lectures. Tonight was one of those. 

He’s got his desk set up so he has a blank wall as his zoom background, and he’s facing the doorway. I don’t have to be utterly quiet, even though he usually has the door open, as he’s got headphones with microphone on. Still, I try to keep it down. Also, this set up gives me the ability to approach without appearing on camera. I walked up with his meal on a plate, set it on the desk, produced the dipping bowl, set that down, and then did the sommelier’s wave over the mae ploy bottle I’d had tucked under my arm. He’d been mouthing thank you, but at this, he gave me an enthusiastic double thumb’s up, and I poured a healthy amount into his dipping bowl. 

Later, at his break, he popped in to tell me dinner was very good and thank you. Motherhood has odd rewards, let me tell you if you’ve never experienced it. Being able to clown with the sauce bottle made my evening a little better, gave me something to write about, and in years to come, a memory to revisit. I don’t record the downsides here. If we had a fight, or something we tried failed, or the trials and arrows of everyday life. It’s not that I want to pretend they don’t exist, it’s that they aren’t the important things. I talk about my struggles, sure, hoping someone out there needs to hear that to help them get through a rough moment. Like I wrote not long ago, I prefer to be relentlessly cheerful. We don’t need to look hard for the bad in life. We do sometimes need a mental moment to refresh, with a smile and a snack for the brain. 

Keeps me going, memories do. I can look back, and see how far I’ve come. But also, how some things never change. And that’s good, too.

My version of his dinner! fancy chicken nuggets, mini dumplings, asian slaw, and of course, mae ploy. 

7 thoughts on “Mae Ploy

  1. So that’s what “mae ploy” is.

    I was thinking that it was something that Mae West would do. [Crazy Grin]

      1. Yep and especially fitting when you were talking about your Little Man.

        IE Mae West (or her characters) was known for “managing” men. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      1. I think there were things she wouldn’t do but she would allow you to imagine that she would do them. ๐Ÿ˜ˆ

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