Wrong Daddy

I was away for the weekend, and I came back to find that G's infatuation with Thomas the Tank Engine continues. This is her tonight after she'd been reunited with her favourite little train. This morning, before I took her to nursery, there were tears at the breakfast table when I told her she wasn't allowed to take him with her.

"I want Thomas!" she repeated, wailing plaintively. I was unmoved, but only because I have developed the instinct that parents have for this sort of thing. A typical toddler tantrum is over in a minute or so, but the kind of epic tantrum that would ensue if Thomas got lost at nursery, well, that just isn't worth thinking about. "Thomas will still be here when you get back later," I reassured her as we got in the car, to which I got a very doubtful look in return.

As I went to pick G up, I was walking down the corridor towards her room when one of the nursery nurses came by leading a little boy, who was black. "Daddy!" he said, pointing towards me, hopefully. "No, I don't think that's your daddy," she replied, with the air of someone who had already had to say the same thing several times, probably in quick succession.

I didn't wait to hear if she went on to explain precisely why I was unlikely to be related to him. Besides, this all demonstrates another truth of parenting that I have discovered: three-year-olds may be able to talk more, but they still aren't the best recipients of any kind of logic.


Violetsrose said...

This is one of the things I love about little kids - they don't care what you're like as long as you love them - they don't care if you're tall or short, black or white, fat or thin, pretty or ugly, rich or poor - they don't see these things - they see kindness and fun and the time you take to play with them and the comfort you give them when they're hurting - kids see the person inside - when do we lose that?

Douglas Carnall said...

@Violetsrose: hear, hear!

I suspect that child just hasn't yet learnt to make a linguistic distinction between "a" daddy and "his" daddy. I bet he knew you were not his dad. And he was quite right that you are a dad.
A more educational subsequent remark would have been an encouraging "That's right, that's G's daddy. Are you waiting for your daddy?"