A Day In The Life

Proper Names
May 8, 2007, 2:05 pm
Filed under: Odds and Ends

For two years while living in Virginia Beach, Virginia, I worked as a full-time babysitter.  My charges were a two year old and her nine year old brother.  Brother was in school most of the day then had a variety of after school activities, but the two year old, Sunny, and I spent many hours together.  Two of my first “assignments” as Sunny’s sitter, were to get her off her bottle when she went to bed and to get her potty trained. 

When I was a little girl, I was told that I had a “sweet petunia” and my baby brother had a “peanut”, but my boss, Lindy,  wanted her children to call their body parts by their proper names.   I don’t want to start a debate.  You have children and you can call their private parts whatever you want to.  I’m just saying, that I found it difficult to use that V-word and that P-word with a two year old.  Chalk it up to my modest Southern upbringing.  And I wasn’t even sure a two year old needed to know what her brother had.  But, I did my best to follow Lindy’s wishes.

One day I took Sunny to KFC to pick up some lunch.  The fastfood joint was crowded and we were standing in line behind an African American man who appeared to be a construction worker also picking up some lunch.  I was completely unprepared for Sunny to reach up her little hand and tug on the back of the man’s shirt.   He was a real gentleman and not only turned to see what Sunny wanted, he also squatted so he could really hear her as she said, “Hey, did you know you have a penis?  You do.  You have a penis and I have a vagina.  My mom has a vagina, tooooooooo…”   I was dumbfounded.  I was embarrassed.  I was mortified.  I was running with Sunny to the car. 

I can’t remember where I finally bought our lunch.  I do know it had a drive thru window.  


13 Comments so far
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Oh my God, how embarrassing.

Personally I don’t think two year olds need to know the correct names, especially when something like that can happen.

Comment by beccy

HOW embarrassing — Since my mother cannot even say menopause, we were never taught the proper names as children

Comment by LeftCoastOnlooker

My mom had us in the 60s and she tried to be open minded and progressive. We learned the proper names for our privates and did the exact same thing as your charges…. my sister went around the dinner table at a large family gathering and declared what parts each family member posessed. Needless to say I eased into proper terminology later in the game with my kids…. lesson learned from the stories that went on for years in our conservative extended family!

Comment by Grim Reality Girl

ha ha …. I would have loved to see your face….

Comment by Pamela

Oh my.. that would have been embarassing and I cant help but chuckle a bit though.. I don’t personally feel comfortable with using the proper names right now…

Comment by Tonya

ohmygoodness!! that is a funny story!!

Comment by claudia

That is hysterical… it absolutely made my day!!

Comment by Jodi

Oh my heck! That made me laugh out loud, literally. Poohs & Punky woke us up one morning when we were visiting them and they both proceeded to point and tell us what we had. HA! Oh geez!

Thanks for a good giggle!

Comment by Julie

I love it! You’ve inspired me to post about something Austin did.

Comment by Vicki


Comment by Karmyn R

LOL this is too funny! I wonder if the gentleman was as mortified as you were…

Comment by Susan

My friend tried this with her daughter and she had the hardest time getting it right. She kept telling us she had a Virginia.

Comment by gawilli

If Amber had done that, I would have laughed my arse off. Sounds like something I did once as a child, only I loudly compared bulbs at a nursery to the privates of our large male german shepherd.

Comment by Tiggerlane

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