The Fantastic Ramp Also Known As One of My Strangest Parenting Failures

After school every day, my kids run over to an office with a ramp in front of it. I have tried bribing, pleading, demanding, and faking my own death to get them to walk directly to our car. These parenting ideas worked so well that now I park my car near the ramp to save us the walk back.  I also congratulate myself daily on teaching my children that unyielding determination and a mother who’s not strong enough to lift two children at once, will take a person far in life.

This ramp-tastic field trip has been going on for over a year, but lately, it’s occurred to me that this office’s receptionist and any patients, who have midday appointments, watch my children stare longingly into the reception area like they’ve never seen a television or a couch.

Wow. Your television is so shiny.

These strangers then listen to my kids run up and down the ramp demanding that I try to kiss them. Or they just see a mom puckering her lips while her children shriek and run away.

Hide from the kiss of death!

An whomever is in charge of cleaning the glass windows gets to wipe off tiny hand prints smeared must wonder WTH? The office has been closed for a week.

BOING! hand print. BOING! hand print.

Finally, the receptionist and her co-workers stare while one of my children cries hysterically from either falling down, having to leave the AMAZING RAMP or deciding that the kissing game DOES NOT INCLUDE KISSING MY HAND!

Obviously, we have never been inside the building because me, the strange mom whose kids climb on a stone ramp and stand against a glass door before they’re willing to go home with me., would like to keep her dignity by never having to make eye contact with any living person who has ever entered that building.

Have a ramp-tastic day!

Alex Iwashyna

Alex Iwashyna went from a B.A. in philosophy to an M.D. to a SAHM, poet and writer by 30. She spends most of her writing time on LateEnough.com, a humor blog (except when it's serious) about her husband fighting zombies, awkward attempts at friendship, and dancing like everyone is watching. She also has a soft spot for culture, politics, and rude Southern people who offend her Yankee sensibilities. She parents 2 elementary-aged children, 1 foster baby, 3 cats, and 1 puppy, who are all Southern but not rude. Yet.

22 thoughts on “The Fantastic Ramp Also Known As One of My Strangest Parenting Failures

      1. Laughing. Ramps are also for swinging on, climbing on, and running on with Grandma watching while other grow ups wait for food to come.

  1. In moments like these I think, “Meh, this is Richmond. People are offended when I’m not wearing plaid and boat shoes.”

    And then I go on about my day.

    Oh and if I was that receptionist? I’d probably delight in the break in my day. 🙂

  2. Well, one day part of one of our adventures (w/ Matt) was spending a half hour riding up and down in a glass elevator in the Omni. Met lots of interesting folks, some of whom said they had done the same thing with their kids.

  3. My guess is that it makes their day and they probably mention the time and seeing/not seeing the kids. How fun to know you probably make someone’s day every day! And yahoo for little traditions.

  4. We used to have to go to a tree, a specific tree, every day after school last year. This year its behind a fence. Oh, the tragedy!

    It hurts no one (except for the scraped knees), it’s entertaining to your kids. Seems a win win to me.

  5. Our toddler (recently 2) has his favorite things to do in our Honda Odyssey. None include getting in his seat. At least not until he sits in the “back seat”, which means he wants to sit on the fabric part of the seat, beside his car seat, in the back seat. Also… “drive a car” is yelled on nearly every trip after he once had the chance to sit in the drivers seat while we were parked.

  6. Every church I have belonged to has had an interior ramp to help move along different half floor levels. These ramps have invariably been the favorite place for children your children’s ages and younger to play. Very entertaining for the adults to watch although the parents look a little stressed sometimes. 😉

  7. We have a similar ramp located outside my daughter’s school. When I’m in a hurry I know to park on the opposite side of the school and walk alllll the way around so as to avoid the cursed ramp. Yes, walking three times the distance is faster than dealing with the ramp.

    In conclusion: your kids are lucky they have such a patient mom.

  8. I love that kids can find immense happiness playing on the most mundane things… except I can feel your pain. In one way, I rejoice that my kids are creative and can make anything fun, and in another I just want to get going and not endure the stares of parents that would never let their kids act that way in public.
    Although, when someone smiles at me with that knowing smile, while my kids are running down ramps or swinging on bike ramps… it always makes my day.

  9. I can imagine the inconvenience you are feeling. But I think they are cute and it is amusing that they are having an amazing time playing in the ramp as long as you are not feeling stressed already. It is just great that your kids have tons of energy and going in the playground can be good for them.

  10. OMG, one of the first days we ran into you at school, I noticed your kids running up that ramp before they got into the car. I actually thought to myself, “Wow, that’s so cool that she and her husband just let their kids have a minute to run before they get into the car. I am so uptight, always hurrying my kids into the car and never letting them do stuff like that on a whim.” Therein began my belief that you are cooler than I am. But now… I have new sympathy for you knowing that it happens every day! I still think you might be cooler than I am, though.

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