Years ago, Jay and I played a video game called The Sims. In The Sims, you control a little virtual person, or people, and you tell them when to eat, sleep, go to work, watch TV, buy furniture, etc. Sometimes your little Sim people will get the opportunity to adopt a baby. I adopted Sim babies all the time, but I could never figure out how to get them to stop crying. Inevitably, a tiny Sim social worker would show up at the Sim house and take my baby away. Every dang time.
Finally, I figured out that if I stopped allowing my Sim adults to sleep -- keeping them awake until they collapsed into little heaps on the floor -- I'd get to keep the baby, and he/she would grow up into an official child. I quit playing shortly after that, because I felt I'd finally conquered the biggest obstacle in the video game. Then I had an actual baby and realized real life baby-care worked EXACTLY LIKE IT DID IN THE SIMS. I probably realized this while lying in a little heap on the floor. Memories of those months are a little fuzzy.
There are still some days I expect a tiny Sim social worker to come after my real baby. For example, WCB just started saying "bear", but it comes out "beer." What if we're at the grocery store or the mall or the library someday, and WCB begins clamoring for her beer? What if I absent-mindedly say, "You can have your beer when you get home"? I imagine a team of tiny social workers tackling me from behind.
That's not all. This morning, WCB discovered she could fit into Garland's kitty carrier. She climbed in and happily shut the door behind her. There was my child, spending part of her morning in a cage, playing with cat toys.
I think I hear tiny social worker footsteps on the driveway.