Frenetic Kinetic

The Circle of Baths

One of Raphael’s favorite pastimes is taking a bath. Day or night, friends visiting or not, when the mood strikes, he starts stripping down and heading for the tub.

Today was our first day back at homeschooling after a two week break, so when Raphael finished his work, peered around the room for a moment, then declared he’d like a bath, I was happy to oblige. Tre and Max were elbow deep in the work of avoiding their work, and I was busy with constructive parenting moves such as threatening to eat their livers. So.

Raphael trucked off to the bathroom to shuck his clothing. There is a strict order to these things, you know. He will go to the bathroom alone, remove his clothes, and inform me when I am permitted to join him. Then, ONLY AFTER HE HAS CLIMBED INTO THE TUB, I may start the water. He shimmies up the wall, his hands planted on the side of the tub, his feet gripping the tiles, watching the incoming water with horror, until I assure him it’s ok, it’s not cold, and then he eases down and touches it with his toe. Deep sigh of relief, and he hunkers down in the water.

Today, after he had settled down into the tub, I asked if he’d like some bubbles in his bath. I always offer, and he almost always refuses, which is a source of some pain to me. I associate bubble baths with happiness, and I seem to be thwarted in my sincere efforts to give my children a happy, bubble-berry scented childhood. Max doesn’t use bubble bath, since he tends to break out in rashes. Tre doesn’t take baths anymore, but has morphed into a bizarrely self-cleaning child. “Go take a shower,” I say, and fifteen minutes later he’s standing there, with freshly shampooed hair, smelling like soap and lotion and durn near godliness. (Lest you think he’s a well-groomed child by nature, I did discover the other day that he’d been wearing the same pair of socks for nearly a week. The smell…good Lord, the smell...)

Anyhow, Raphael generally prefers his water unadulterated by bubbles, so IMAGINE MY JOY when I offered him bubble bath and he cocked his head at me and replied,

“Ok. Yes. Yes, I do want bubbles.”

I poured thick globs of purple Scooby-Do bubble mix in the water, exclaiming over the resultant mounds of foam. Raphi slid back and forth in the water, then reached over the side for a dinosaur toy (Allosaurus, Mama. It’s not called Long Neck). He plunged the toy in the water, then lifted it up. Bubbles clung to its surface, and Raphael paused, mid-roar. He batted at the bubbles.

“I just KNEW I should have chosen no bubbles,” he muttered.

Makes me wonder, will he be disappointed some day, years from now, when his child dearly wishes for bubble baths? WILL THE CYCLE NEVER END?

After his bath he emerged, slick-haired and wrapped in a fuzzy blue bathrobe. He padded into the kitchen and smiled at me.

“Hi, Mama. I’m done.”

“I see that. Did you have a good bath?”


“Did you like the bubbles?”



“Are you going to have bubbles NEXT time?”

He gave me a somber look.

“No Mama. So don’t ask.”



"No, Mama. Don't ask?" *ROFL* Well, now. It's nice to know that he knows EXACTLY what he, isn't it? *still laughing*


I have become very passionate about lavendar bubble bath. It can really make a difference in how quickly they go down at night, I've found.


I second what David said. At least he knows what he wants. :)


Silly Mama.

I've decided that since I can't seem to stop MY boy from growing up, I shall launch a campaign to keep Raphi little. Okay? :)


Raphael sounds just like my Gabriel, what with the climbing walls to avoid the water scenario. And when I turn on the hand held shower head, to rinse the shampoo from his hair? The child climbs the shower curtain to get away from me.

Maybe it's something in the angelic names?

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