Fancy Cars & Chocolate Bars

Bone Marrow Transplant Day+12.

The doctors have said that if all goes according to plan (who are we kidding) then Heather could come home on Day+20-30. That is great news! I’m tired of answering Nathan’s two dominant questions; 1) When is mommy coming home? Me: Soon! [That’s all I can say, he has no concept of days], 2) I want my mommy daddy! Now I realize that this last one is not a question as it is more a verbal cry of his heart. When I was young, I cried for my mommy with the best of them. Nathan has a heart felt need for his mommy, and that’s FANTASTIC! The Smyth boys have been doing really well even though we have both been sick and the end is in sight. You see, in order to visit Heather you need to be symptom free from colds for a minimum of 3-days/72hrs. So I have not been able to see Heather since Thursday, November 26th. If this cold gets out of my system today I should be able to see Heather this weekend, December 4-6. Over a week later!

Nathan and I were out buying a Christmas present for his uncle Paul. We made an adventure of it. Once in the store we wandered and played hide-n-seek. Quick Tip: When you are in the Plasma/LCD TV section of a store, don’t play hide-n-seek. Crash! I’m not saying any more. So we walk towards the cashier and you have to walk past all the gadgets/toys and chocolate bars. What does Nathan start asking for? A chocolate bar! “Daddy, can I have a chocolate bar?” Me: No Nathan, you don’t need a chocolate bar. [Pause] Nathan: I know I don’t NEED a chocolate bar, I WANT a chocolate bar! Now wanting to show my extraordinary parenting skills to the teenage cashier serving me I turn to Nathan and say in a matter of fact tone, “Nathan, I WANT a new car. You give me a new car, you can have a chocolate bar.” So there! I turned back to the cashier with a proud smile on my face because of my victory over a 3 year old. YES!

Then it happens.

Nathan reaches up, touches my hand and says, “Here you go daddy.” With just four little words I knew I was either in trouble or I had been successfully defeated by a 3 year old.

I looked down and there he was with a confident look on his face. I then looked at his had that was touching mine. There in his hand was the brand new HotWheels car that he had received the day before from friends. I took the car from him, looked at it, looked back at him in astonishment. Nathan then said, “can I have my chocolate bar daddy!?!” I looked at the cashier, looked back at Nathan and said to him, “Yes, you can go get your chocolate bar.” He ran as fast as he could, got his peanut free Mars bar and came back.

Now as any good parent, I’m willing to admit that I was defeated, in public, by my 3 year old. But as any wise parent I kept the car. I put it on my dresser as a trophy of defeat. Three days later Nathan see’s the car sitting on my dresser and says, “Is that the car I traded for my chocolate bar?” Me: Yes Nathan, it is. Nathan: That was a good trade daddy!

So each day I look at that car I’m reminded that it will not be the last time that I am bested by my son. It also showed me that that if Nathan could make it happen for something that he wanted, he was willing to part with a new toy and not ask for it again. What an entrepreneur.


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