Saturday, January 29, 2011


It’s innate with children.  I’m almost certain of it.  I’m also pretty sure that it still functions properly even when the kids grow up, move out and yes, even if they move far away.  It begins very early on in their sweet lives.  Almost as soon as the little darlings make their appearance, the radar is in fine working condition.  Should a new mom actually get a minute or two to sit and have a cup of tea or read a sentence in a book or clean something what happens?  Child Radar kicks in and infant awakens immediately.  As the years speed by like a flash of light go by and the children get older, Child Radar remains intact.  If mom has been invited out for some shopping and lunch with friends while the little darlings are in school, the minute her food arrives at the table, one of the blessings calls from school needing to come home.  Perhaps mom has just gotten the kitchen floor mopped.  It is right at the second she finishes that Child Radar kicks in and everyone comes tromping in the house for a snack.  Even now our college darlings know when I’ve been to the grocery store.  Not because I go the same day every week, but because of Child Radar.  Every single time my BFF L calls me, Deanie beeps in.  Every.  Single.  Time.  It’s gotten to the point that, when on the phone with BFF L and I say, “Hold on, I have a beep,”  BFF L says, “Tell Deanie I said HI!”  Child Radar.  And just a few days ago it was Deanie who called and said, “I don’t have enough money to get Becks his heart worm preventative this month.  Do you think it’ll be ok to wait and give it to him Feb. 1st when I get another check?”  Sounds innocent enough doesn’t it?  Well, think again.  I was, the very moment she called, on the road heading towards the vet to pick up Tucker’s heart worm preventative for the month.  That’s right, Child Radar.  Needless to say, I picked up a pill for Becks and dropped it in the mail to DC (and that’s called mom-enables-child-radar-continuation). 

Oh, and don’t be fooled.  Husbands possess this innate trait as well- Hubby Radar or are-you-freaking-kidding-me-because-you-are-old-enough-to-know-better radar.  That’s right.  Hubs can be sitting in front of the television engrossed in a thrilling episode of the evening news and suddenly, as soon as I am engrossed in a wonderfully entertaining movie, the evening news is over and he has to have a conversation of vital importance with me such as, “Did you get lemons at the grocery store today?”  Hubby Radar.  And let’s not forget the nightly dish washing routine --I finish eating and begin cleaning up the kitchen while Hubs becomes entranced in the television.  Without fail, just as I’ve finished the very last dirty dish, in he walks with his dinner dishes.  Hubby Radar.  This Hubby Radar also goes off whenever I begin reading a book, concentrating on a new recipe, writing...     

Since Child Radar seems to turn into Hubby Radar for the male of the species, I wonder if, in women, it turns into Women’s Intuition.  In some instances we don't even get any obvious signs when our intuition kicks in.  It’s just there, sometimes more obvious than others, alerting us to dangers and joys.  It’s how we women ‘know’ things before we’re told about them.  It’s also how we are able to correctly size up someone immediately- how our first impressions are rarely, if ever, wrong.  And it tunes us into Red Flag Alerts.  

“Mom has eyes in the back of her head!” --a statement of amazement spoken by my youngest brother one evening while he was sitting on the porch leaning back in the chair and mother, with her back to him, told him to “put the chair on all four legs before you fall back and crack your head wide open.”  You should have seen the look on his face- complete and utter amazement. 

Of course, when we grow up and have kids of our own, we quickly come to realize that our mother’s did not have an extra set of eyes in the back of their heads, they were just observant.  And we were kind of stupid.  I mean, seriously, had we thought about it, we wouldn’t have done some of those things with her so close by.  Especially with a mirror in front of her.  Or when we were upstairs fighting and she, who was downstairs, yelled up, “What are y’all doing up there?”  And we yelled back, in the sweetest of tones, “Nothing!” -- had absolutely nothing to do with the sounds emanating from the second floor.

When our girls were growing up, there were several instances where they wondered how I was privy to their shenanigans.  I could see Breezy’s reflection in a frame when she was jumping on the bed one afternoon and I reminded her that she was not supposed to jump on the bed.  She plopped right down from mid-air and, in a hushed tone, asked her sister, “How did she know I was jumping on the bed?”  I always used those opportunities to say something like, “Mommies see all and hear all.”  Of course, it’s more like ‘Mommies can put 2 and 2 together quite nicely.’ 

I have an absolute favorite example of the ‘Mom has eyes in the back of her head’ scenarios.  I love it because the two daughters involved were teenagers.  And there was really nothing better than using this ability on a teen or two—it’s just so much FUN!  Breezy was a freshman in college and home for Christmas break.  Deanie was a junior in high school, Birdie a sophomore.  Deanie had plans to go with some friends, one of whom I was not completely thrilled about, to a concert downtown.  My concern lessened somewhat when Breezy said that she and boytoy at the time were going to go with them.  Now, my concern was only slightly lessened because my red flag indicator starting flashing.  Why would Breezy and boytoy be doing this?  Hmmm…..  So I suggest to Deanie that perhaps Birdie would like to accompany them as well.  And her response was no.  Not too surprising that a sister wouldn’t really want her younger sister along, right?  Wrong.  Deanie was always up for taking her sister along.  But not this time.  Hmmm….the red flag indicator is beginning to flash brighter and faster.  I decide to let them go.  I only have suspicions at this time (and the red flag indicator) but, not any real solid evidence. 

And, maybe, things would have just been left alone except that Deanie lost her cell phone and the stories of how that might have happened were many and varied (you’d think they would have at least compared their stories, yes?).  But no.  Breezy goes back to school and I decide to turn to the good old stand-by rule of ‘give them enough rope and they’l l hang themselves.’  Now, so far what we have are two red flag warnings and a multitude of stories so filled with holes that they couldn’t even resemble swiss cheese.  What’s a mother to do?  What I had put together in my mind’s eye is that Deanie and friend-I-didn’t-particularly-care-for had planned on doing something, perhaps, like drinking.   Why else would she have been throwing up in boytoy’s car after the concert in Wendy’s parking lot—Breezy said it was because Deanie had gotten a stomach bug while they were out (Really?  Because I’ve never really heard of a stomach bug that only lasted 4 hours or less but, oh well…ROPE.) and that her cell phone must have dropped out while she was throwing up in the parking lot.  But they were looking in boytoy’s car for the phone.  Next story, Deanie had thrown up in the car and they had to stop and clean it out.  What?  Wait…more ROPE.
Life continued for a few weeks- everyone back in school, normal activities, mom’s mind still stewing…and then, Breezy comes back home.  And opportunity?  It presented itself.  Breezy and I were talking about this and that and suddenly, there it was:

Breezy:  “Did Deanie find her cell or get another one?”
ME:  “No, she didn’t find it.  Dad is deciding about another one.”
Breezy:  “Well, is he going to let her have one?”
Me:  “I hope so.  I like being able to keep up with y’all and knowing that you can call for help if need be.”
Breezy:  “Dad should get her another one.”
Me:  “Well, it would have been best had she not decided to drink and lose it to begin with.”
Breezy:  “Who told you!?”
Me:  “You just did.”
Ah, yes.  Patience can be a mother’s friend.             

Recognizing red flag alerts has been relatively easy.  However, listening to my inner voice, my Women’s Intuition, has not always been a strength of mine.  Or, maybe it had not really kicked in until I started having children.  But once it came out and knocked me in the head with a 2x4 with obvious evidential support, I’ve stood at attention to it ever since. 

During our very early years of marriage, Hubs and I lived in a small hovel of a structure behind his parents’ landscape nursery.  Attached to the left side of the hovel was an old greenhouse no longer in use.  There was a door off the house that opened into the greenhouse but it had been sealed off years ago.  We only had Breezy at this time and, one Saturday, I had the uncontrollable urge to rearrange her room.  It was going to be a busy day filled with errands, shopping, and lunch out.  But my intuition was nagging me like crazy!  So, before doing anything else that day, I let my intuition lead me into Breezy’s room where it insisted that I rearrange the furniture.  Since I ‘had’ to rearrange furniture anyway, the idea to flip her mattress came flooding into my mind.  I removed the sheets and, as soon as I lifted up one corner of the bed there, right there, on the box spring was a small, coiled up snake.  No matter whether it was a harmless snake or not because I HATE THOSE THINGS.  To me a snake is a snake is a snake.  Oh it was horrible as that nasty thing hit the floor and slithered its way around the room!  I threw the trash can on top of it, ran out of the room and slammed to door behind me.  OMG!  I HATE THOSE THINGS!  I called Hubs who came immediately and searched EVERY WHERE for that #@$% snake.  It was nowhere to be found.  Hubs had me describe it to him and he said it was probably a garden snake.  WTH does ‘probably’ mean?  He searched and searched some more while I took Breezy to my mother’s for a couple of days so he could make sure that darn thing was not in the house.  All turned out fine.  The snake never reappeared.  We moved into a small, but cozy, house with no greenhouse attached to the side.   

There have been numerous instances of these intuitive moments through the years.  And, any time that I had the urge to put it off or ignore it, the snake incident would pop up in my mind and I would immediately stand at attention.  I have also found intuition handy when it comes to picking teams to win big games- the Super Bowl and filling out March Madness brackets for example.  Oh, no.  Not for money.  And I'm not always right.  It's just for the pure satisfaction of getting it right while Hubs, and now BestSonInLawEVER, get it wrong. 



  1. LOL They do indeed have "the radar". Just recently I was at a lunch with friends (and I turned my cell phone OFF...wild as I am!) and when my daughter called me during that time - from college - and I didn't answer or return her call in what she deemed an appropriate amount of time she called her Dad at work and they she got MAD at me. LOL She didn't need anything, just wanted to chat...heavens forbid MOM not be available!!! LOL

    Oh my goodness....a snack (well, that would have been it for me in that house) LOL I don't care either whether they are harmless or NOT. Bleck!

  2. Great story! Funny how mother's have that intiuition. It drove my youngest son nuts! lol

  3. Bella- Isn't that the truth?! It's that way here too--no matter that one is married, one lives in DC, two are in college, I am supposed to be at their beck and call to this day! LOL

    Eva- Thanks! Hey, part of the appeal is that it does drive them nuts, right? LOL

  4. I loved this post. Oh, so TRUE. My intuition has given me a great Leg Up many of times.

    Years ago, when we lived on a farm, the kids were at school and I was cleaning the house. I went in the boy's room and saw a rubber snake on the floor and started laughing because the boys had played a trick on me. I bent down to pick the snake up and IT MOVED!
    Oh my Goodness..Now what was I going to do! I could not stay in the house with a snake and their Dad was on the road for three weeks.
    I went into the kitchen, got my spaghetti tongs, picked that sucker up and threw it outside!

  5. Shawn, I am so impressed! Tbere is no way I could have done that. We would have had to leave!

  6. Nothing like a woman's intuition. I just wish everyone else in the family would realize that we're always would save so much time. LOL

  7. Great post and full of so much truth! Like a few weeks ago when my mom radar told me that my empty nest had been secretly un-empty while I was at work! My newlywed son had been there doing their laundry because the apartment laundry room is creepy.

  8. So MUCH in this post! You have a great way of writing about the radars, be it Kid or hubby. Soooo true, those! Loved reading this!

  9. My son used to look real close to the back of my head. One day I asked what he was doing and he said he was looking for those other eyes back there. It was the best. He still remembers it too. Great post! Good job on the room / snake incident. Always go with your gut I say.

  10. Phew, that was a long post! But so very true. My mum, sadly no longer with us, always seemed to know what I was doing, even when we were in separate rooms. It never failed to amaze me. Grandchildren certainly have the radar as well. When they are having their nap, as soon as I go to sit down and look at a magazine, I hear this little voice coming down the stairs, saying "grandma, grandma"! I've learnt now to sit down as soon as they go up for their nap.

  11. Excellent point Cranberry!

    Brenda Susan- my college girls come home to do the same thing.

    Betty- Thank you so much!

    Barb- I agree- the gut does not lie!

    This-Oh goodie--I get to look forward to this with grandchildren as well? LOL I know it was long- and I really tried to shorten it! Maybe I'm becoming one of my long winded friends!

    Gail- Thank you!

  12. Funny stuff young one, and so true. I enjoyed it very much.

    I also sell jamming equipment on Amazon that works on both pesky kids and hubs radar. It just came out but is a big seller. Go figure.

  13. You hit is spot on. They all have a build in radar to keep me on my toes, but I've been freaking them out with having eyes on the back of my head for few years now in return.

  14. I agree. We have radar! I am glad though, when my worries are unfounded. Eew! I hate snakes.

  15. Oh, so true. I would love it when I knew something that was going on and they couldn't figure out how I knew things!

  16. Love it, love it!!! Thanks for sharing and writing such a great post.
    I hope you had a great weekend. Take care and God Bless!!

  17. Love the story of the phone! Classic! My teens were always surprised that I could stay a step ahead of them. They never figured out that anything they thought of--I had already done!

  18. LOL You made me laugh so hard! Because it's TRUE! Nothing is funnier than the TRUTH! And you hit it spot-on. Kids are stupid. I can say that with utmost certainty because being not quite 30, I am still considered one. LOL


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