Monday, March 1, 2010

The Bad-Mommy Method

When you’re trying to quiet
a fussy toddler in the back seat,
long overdue for a nap
and hanging onto wakefulness
by a frayed thread,

and you're stuck in traffic
a long way from home,
listening to the screams escalate,
wondering why you timed your outing
to Train Town

or the zoo
so badly,
and you’ve exhausted all
the good-mommy options

like singing lullabies
and passing back the sippy cup,
baggy of Cheerios,

or even
the contraband binky that he’s trying to quit,
then proceed to the bad-mommy method:
Turn up the AC/DC real loud.

You’ll feel much better, I promise,
and your baby will be just fine.

And one day,

maybe twelve years or so in the future,
you might experience a moment
like the one
that is currently warming
the bad-mommy chamber of my heart:
from the room down the hall,
where my son is practicing his guitar,
come the unmistakable strains
of “Back in Black.”


  1. I've always been a fan of the bad-mommy method for troublesome husbands, but I won't give away any details here. . .

  2. i'm totally down with the bad-mommy method. but for kids : ) i think it just happens naturally. at least i hope it does to everyone else too. thanks sarah!

  3. I loved this too, Sarah! So true. Sometimes, you just turn it up. Radiohead also does this for me in a pinch, but of course there's nothing like 80s power rock. Thanks for that glimpse into the future. —Sara