Love, in the form of a light bulb.

For you parents out there, and in particular, you parents with many children (like myself) there will come a time (if it has not already happened) that one of your children (in my case #3 of 5) finally comes to the realization that they are  loved less then their siblings.

About a week back, while trying to calm #3 of 5 down from a particularly "difficult evening", I sat down with him in an attempt to understand what was bothering him.  For those of you who follow me on Facebook, it was Jan. 27th - when my status read.. 

David put "Disintegration" by The Cure in for an "agitated" #3 of 5 to help mellow him out a bit. Now, I am listening to it myself...."

While sitting and talking to him, he put me in my place with a shared a recent realization that he had made.  He realized that I did not love him as much as our other children. 

? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?

Curiously, I asked him what made him feel that way. 

light outHis reply...  "Because when the light bulbs go out in the other kid's rooms, you change them right away.  The light bulb in my room has been out for a long time now, and you STILL have not changed it."

Is that the best you got little man?  Come on, I could do WAY better then that!!  Let's be honest here... It's only been out for a couple of weeks.

A couple of weeks?? 

Just what kind of monster father am I??

Wait.... Did he just say I love him less because I did not change his LIGHT BULB as quickly as I may (or may not have) with his siblings??

light onTrying hard to fight off the giggle that was welling up inside me, I did my best to justify why I had indeed not changed HIS bulb as quickly as I may have with the other rooms.  While it was true that the rest of the kid's ceiling light fixtures' bulbs do get replaced faster than his, it "may have" something to do with the desk lamp that is in his room that is not in any of the other rooms.  The desk lamp that lights his room as well as his ceiling light...

Let me clear up one other excuse tidbit of info before going on. 

Hardware Store lesson #4538. 

Light bulbs have different sized bases.  Mogul, Standard and Candelabra are among the most common.  Recently, there has been more interest in the lesser known "intermediate" base. 

The ceiling fan installed in #3 of 5's bedroom has a receptacle for a lesser known "intermediate" base light bulbs.  (Had I known it at the time, I would have purchased a different fan).  

I had a slightly harder time finding the bulb.  Attempt #1 was Target (my mistake).  The only thing I could find was a outrageously expensive "appliance bulb" for microwave ovens.  That bulb lasted for a few days before burning out.

bulbsToday, I broke down, and made a special run to Home Depot to see if I could buy my son's love back find the appropriately sized light bulb.  (What I should have done in the first place).

When #3 of 5 came home - I took him to his room, turned on his light, and "asked his permission" to love him as much as the rest of the kids again...  Having all but forgotten his "difficult evening" and the statement he made, I had to remind him how I did not love him as much as the other kids.  He suddenly remembered, and we had quite the chuckle out of it.

But the story does not stop there.  Oh, no.   

I then took him upstairs, and showed him the selection of bulbs I purchased JUST FOR HIS LIGHT!  I reminded him that NONE of the other kids have a stash of special light bulbs JUST FOR THEM!! 

I asked him if this now meant I love him more than the others....     


  1. We only have 1 child so far. So I tell her she is the best, most loved and my favorite of all our children.

  2. It's something about that middle child. Some times they do inadvertently get the shaft. They always bring it to attention too.

  3. All that we do and as hard as we try, the things that kids latch on to!! Another reminder how important the little things can be.

  4. Yooooooooooooooooooou light up my life
    Yooooooooooooou give me hope
    To carry on
    You light up my days
    and fill my nights with song

  5. I don't know how it works in your big family, but in CareerMom's it's:
    Squeaky wheel gets the greasin'!

  6. So it does just take one Dad to screw in a lightbulb. It sure is difficult to spread yourself equally all the time. But, as long as you spread yourself, it will eventually even out.

  7. David,
    I am happy that there is again love in your home and in #3's room, but I am somewhat disappointed by your choice of bulbs. Incandescent? Not very green, from someone who espouses the Green Party Line whenever he gets the chance!



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