It's not often that I crack open a Dr. Seuss book without starting to rhyme every other word as I do so. My rhymes are typically horrible, but something about the structure of these books just puts me in the mood to try. Another feeling I feel as I read — empathy. I feel for some of these characters. I get them. There are just some Dr. Seuss characters that every mom can relate to.
Some of these characters are parents themselves, like Pop in Hop on Pop, and have completely relatable stories that moms can see themselves in. Others, like Mr. Brown in Mr. Brown Can Moo! Can You? may not be parents (that we know of), but they have qualities that moms can look at and say, "Yep. Been there, done that." What mom hasn't made a trillion animal noises that sound utterly ridiculous to anyone other than their kid? I've been there for sure.
I love a good Seuss book at bedtime, and if the rhymes weren't already a good enough reason to read them all, it is worth noting that seeing Dr. Seuss' lovable characters in this relatable light as I read with my kids makes the experience even more enjoyable.
1. The Grinch
Oh, that mischievous grin of the Grinch in How The Grinch Stole Christmas, how it warms my mom heart right up. There are definitely days where moms of tantrum-ing toddlers wish they could pack Christmas right up and steal it all away as their kid flails and screams about not getting every single present they asked for. How dare they ruin your Christmas! Then again, moms can also relate to the Grinch's change of heart as he realizes the true meaning of the Christmas season.
2. The Lorax
He "speaks for the trees, for the trees have no tongues" and every mom can relate to the plight of explaining herself over and over (and over) again to kids just like the Lorax does to the boy in the story. In the end, the boy listens, but not before an entire forest is destroyed. Much like your house as your child wreaks havoc by splattering bits of food and play dough all over your freshly mopped floor after you warn them a million times not to. The power struggle is real.
3. The 'Green Eggs And Ham' Narrator
When Sam-I-Am attempts to persuade the narrator of the book Green Eggs and Ham to try his delicious meal, the narrator persistently declines. Moms can relate to this Seuss character's incessant refusal — "No, I do not want to build another set of microscopic LEGOs. Not in a car. Not on a train. Not ever again if I can help it because we play all day every day and I'm tired, so go do it yourself." You get the idea.
4. David Donald Doo
In Dr. Seuss's ABC book, David Donald Doo can be seen snoozing in his bed, dreaming of a dozen doughnuts (and a duck-dog, too). As a mom, I frequently dream of devouring delicious doughnuts without a child in sight so that I don't have to share. Moms that dream of duck-dogs though are probably experiencing hallucinations due to the lack of sleep from being up all night with a baby. It happens. Dr. Seuss must have known moms would totally get David Donald Doo's dreams.
5. Pop in "Hop On Pop"
"Day. Play. We play all day. Night. Fight. We fight all night." Oh, mama, this is one Dr. Seuss book that moms can completely relate to. The kids play all day and fight all night, then they hop relentlessly on poor Pop until he practically begs them to stop. I see so much of my own kids in the kids in Hop On Pop, and I can definitely understand why Pop wants them to leave him the heck alone after all of their antics.
6. Mr. Brown
Mr. Brown in Mr. Brown Can Moo! Can You? can make just about any noise Dr. Seuss can imagine. "He can go like a cork... pop, pop, pop. He can go like horse feet klopp, klopp, klopp." Mr. Brown almost never makes a normal sound, much like moms of babies and toddlers who feel like they never say anything in normal adult language because they babble with their babes all day. It's all "dibble dibble dibble dopp" and a bunch of other baby gibberish that makes me want to drink copious amounts of wine to drown out all of the baby talk.
7. The "Great Day For Up" Narrator
After explaining that everyone and everything is up and ready for an exciting day, the narrator in Great Day For Up ends the tale by saying, "Except for me. Please go away. No up. I'm sleeping in today." This is the dream. My dream. The dream of tired moms everywhere — to be left alone as I sleep in. When given the opportunity, this tired mom says no up, indeed.
8. The Cat In The Hat
With boundless energy and so much sass, the Cat In The Hat character is one moms can definitely relate to. Moms who spend hours on end trying to entertain kids must do so with a bravado that the Cat In The Hat embodies. After all, pulling tricks out of hats and staving boredom for kids who are stuck inside on a rainy day is basically a rite of passage for moms.
9. Juggling Jott
The tiny, but mighty Juggling Jott from the Dr. Seuss book If I Ran The Circus possesses a skill that moms can relate to — the ability to juggle many things at once. Multitasking is something moms do on the regular. Just this morning, I simultaneously replied to emails on my phone while packing school lunches, feeding the dog, and answering my son's 15 questions about his class party tomorrow. If a Juggling Jott can keep 22 question marks, 44 commas, and one dot up in the air, moms can manage juggling our daily routines like a boss.
In One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish, Dr. Seuss gives moms a relatable character in Ned. Ned can't get comfortable in his bed. His feet stick out of one end, but when he tries to adjust, his head sticks out of the other end. Then, a host of other animal characters join him in his uncomfortable bed. A crowded bed and a restless night's sleep? Sounds just like when my kid crawls into my bed just as I am trying to get settled in. He then proceeds to kick me in the face after falling asleep in my now over-crowded bed. Poor Ned. I feel for you.