Posted by: Morgan | October 8, 2010

“As you ascend the dung beetle into the unknown”

For those who frequent our little home, it is known that the word “Bebo” is part of our daily vocabulary. It can be heard, over and over and over again, from our excited 1 1/2 year old as well as occasionally from us, though not quite so excited. “Bebo” is, for those who do not know, is what Emma calls the movie ‘Bug’s Life’ by Pixar. She doesn’t just like this movie, she LOVES this movie. Could-watch-it-three-times-a-day-every-day loves. While we have attempted to limit screen time for Emma since she was a baby, trying to keep it close to 30 minutes at the beginning, I must admit I have recently succumbed to the ‘TV babysitter’. And, by ‘recently, I mean ‘the last month of my pregnancy’.

 

“Bebo” has played in our house so many times that I believe I now have it memorized. Occasionally I suggest “Tooey” (Ratatouille) or “Tars” (Cars), but most often requested is Bebo. For at least a solid month, I was pushing play on the DVD-player-that-has-no-remote-argh every day, some days twice, and even a few days *gasp* three times (though this really was only two or three times). I felt guilty of allowing my child to sit in front of the screen, blaming my lack of energy, and terrified that the energy would continue to be at that level after the baby was born. I was afraid I had created a monster, and not in my daughter…in myself.

 

The week after Logan was born Emma was mostly at my in-law’s, and the time she did spend at home with me included a viewing or two (or three) of Bebo. I was not allowed to do anything except care for myself and the kids, and I had no guilt about the time we sat watching TV together. I learned a lot about the story that I had missed before by not actually watching it; Pixar’s attention to visual details was even more appealing that their engaging story-lines. It was a lot of fun to enjoy the characters with Emma, while she giggled and I giggled at her giggling.

 

Two weeks of not worrying about it at all, and then I woke up Monday morning of last week with a mission. Try to get through the entire week without turning the TV on once. Now, I must admit we did watch the season premiere of ‘Dancing With The Stars’, but Emma wasn’t really that interested, so I didn’t count it as TV time (especially because it was on the computer via hulu…because that makes *such* a difference…not). I also must admit that I almost caved Thursday afternoon when Emma hadn’t taken a nap, Caleb wasn’t due home for another hour and a half, Logan was fussy and I hadn’t slept much the night before. I held out, though, and we read books and colored with ‘mwarkars’, and ended up having a lovely, Bebo-less day. Thankfully Emma only asked to watch it once that week, a rare thing indeed, which helped my resolve and ability to distract her from it.

 

Although I cannot boast a Bebo-free week for this past few days, it did encourage me that we could do it. It also encouraged me that my energy had returned and I wasn’t destined to be a zombie-mommy for the rest of my days (although try telling that to the me from yesterday and she may have had your head). This week the sleeping has been a little worse and I have relied on our good friends Flick and Dot to entertain my little girlie while I got something done or just sat clearing my brain.

 

Either way, going from every day to even an occasional show a week, I’m very comfortable with my toddler watching Bebo since I have the confidence that I can be a completely TV-free mama. Once I’m actually sleeping again. 🙂

 

And for those of you who wondered, the title is my favorite line from Bebo.

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