When in doubt, use the baby monitor

Jack and I had to get out of the house early this morning. We had to take a fun and odiferous trip to the town dump, and it has to be done early, or the lines get ridiculous. Getting Jack out of the house, or getting him to do anything really, in a hurry is a bit of a challenge. I normally send him upstairs to get dressed, and end up having to call him 5 or 6 times. He gets sidetracked by a book, or his legos, or the characters on his underwear, or anything but what I’ve sent him up there to accomplish.

After we ate breakfast today I told Jack to run up and get some pants on. He had a mini fit in the hallway, but he stomped upstairs anyway and slammed his door, then locked it. I decided to turn on the baby monitor and listen in as he got ready. I still have the monitor in his room because he’s on the 2nd floor and not very close to my bedroom. (I just had to go back and change”We still have” to “I still have” and “our bedroom” to “my bedroom”. Sigh. Divorce is FUN!). If there was going to be a time suck up in that bedroom, I was certainly going to hear about it first hand.

Jack is a mutterer. If he’s upset he mutters under his breath. His Dad is a mutterer. The mutter doesn’t fall far from the mutt. Here’s the monologue:

Jack: All she ever does is yell and scream. Blah blah blah, all the time. So annoying to hear her always telling me what to do. What if I don’t want to wear pants to the dump. I don’t have to wear pants if I don’t want to. (I hear legos coming out) Yah! Take that! (cheek bomb explosions). What if I don’t WANT to get dressed. Huh? Ever think of that?

(closet door opening, clothes ruffling).

Oh great, I don’t want to wear pants, it’s SUNNY out so why can’t I wear shorts? Sun equals HOT! Oh great, I’m not going to wear YOU! You’re not going on me, no way! (I hear pants being tossed). Fine, you’re okay to wear. You better not fall down. I’m NOT wearing a belt.

(sounds of getting dressed)

Maybe I don’t want to go to the dump (more lego guys come out and a few drawers open and close) Maybe YOU guys can go to the dump. Mom said we can look for a bike to fix. Maybe I don’t WANT a bike to fix. Maybe I want to take a bike apart. Ever think of that? ARRGH, I kill you! (lego goes flying). But maybe it would be cool to take a bike apart if I had cool tools. I don’t have any cool tools. Maybe I can use Dad’s. I need a screwdriver and sledgehammer and stuff. That would work. I hope they have a red bike that I can totally destroy!

(more clothes ruffling)

These pants are great! Okay, now we’ll go to the dump and get a bike and fix it up to ride!

me: All set up there?

Jack: All set, let’s go!

me: Glad you cheered up. What took so long?

Jack: Sheesh, I was just getting dressed. That’s how long it takes! Can we go now??


It was pretty funny to hear him talk to himself. Some of it was muffled, but he’s generally a pretty loud mutterer. I like how he worked out his anger/frustration on his own and came downstairs in a better mood. Maybe I’ll give him a little more time when I see he’s getting cranky. Makes things a bit easier for me, eh?

4 thoughts on “When in doubt, use the baby monitor”

    1. Yes the stomping! I get lots of that. Especially up and down stairs. It’s like I have a 6-year-old teenager. Then he slams the door a lot. Sigh.


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