Friday, May 29, 2009

a cephalopod moment

I really hate complaining about the sleep patterns of children. I despise it. So I won't do it. Yet, probably in reading that, you are realizing that I likely have a reason for saying it. That in itself turns that fact that I say I don't want to complain about sleep patterns into a complaint about sleep patterns.

As my lack of complaint turns itself wholly into a complaint, I must wonder if it is the content of the complaint that irritates me, or the simple matter of there being a complaint. If the former, well then I'm in the clear, for I've shared no content. If the latter, well then I've just gone and bitten myself in the tail, haven't I.

Sometimes when I get in a thought spiral, I imagine myself circling in it so tight, logarithmically, that the thought itself develops a thick, hard, shell and encases me protectively like a nautilus.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

splish, splash

as i was bathing today, girl bathing her fairy doll in the sink, boy exploring liquid dynamics with my tub water, i found myself thinking about the babycenter message board. all of you baby bearers know babycenter, i'm sure. you dads might think of it with a groan, and you parents to be... oh, just you wait...

yes, even with baby number two, i fell victim to the community. i knew a lot more this time, and i felt i was more of a resource than the first time.

this time around, as the babes from the May birth club were entering their first few weeks of existence, i remember a particularly entertaining thread. well. probably frustrating for the poster, but entertaining for me.

the question posed:


baby is clingy. maybe rarely, or never sleeps off of mom. can't be put down for ten minutes without weeping, and well it's simply against mommy instinct to let the baby cry for very long.

as i recalled this thread and watched my children separately, and together, drenching and defiling my tiny bathroom, i considered... it's amazing the things you need to relearn after having a baby. things you took for granted become seemingly impossible. the act of relearning can make it feel as though time is slowing right down.

yet, time passes. you get advice. you get creative.

before you know it you're just rolling along wondering how and why something like taking a bath was ever so sacred in the first place.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

The Geography of Politics

The five year old just asked me if 'Al-Obama' is where Barack Obama lives.

I think I'm already getting calls from her teacher, and she doesn't start school until August.

Monday, May 18, 2009


we can do so very much sometimes. we can run long distances or lift heavy things or persevere through hardships or carry harsh emotional burdens. we can feel so sure and so capable, then in a single moment, simply trip and fall- over something, or nothing- and suddenly be rendered helpless. so helpless that two or three close people can not even fulfill your needs. where two minutes ago, you could sustain a household, now a small fleet must sustain you. it can all change in a moment, in a second.

saturday morning, mother woke and went to do one of her favourite things- shop at garage sales. she fell. she wasn't riding a horse or a motorcycle. she wasn't skydiving or bungee jumping. she wasn't rock climbing or skiing. she was just walking. and she tripped- and smashed her nose, broke her wrist and broke her leg. trying to move just half an inch is enough to send her screaming now. standing to even hobble is out of the question. she requires at least one surgery and hospital care.

sadly, there is irony. barely 14 hours prior, she was on the phone with me, reprimanding a decision i had made to travel to the northeast for over a week. "you have children to take care of! you can't go traveling around the world getting yourself hurt! your children need you!" i hollered at her that i would not live my life paranoid that something bad might happen to me.

then this simple, silly thing breaks her.

it might almost seem like i'm gloating, but please- that is so far from my mind. this awful accident is a small justification to me that anything can happen anywhere as much as it is a pure horror to me that this has happened to my mother- who can likely not see yet her path to recovery.

so try to be safe. try to be smart and careful, but most of all try to stretch yourself today to do as much as you are capable of doing. live fully, and try so hard to realize it as you're doing it. you're fragile too.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


So, I think the baby boy said his first word last week while we were out to dinner with my parents in Georgia. We were at Red Robin- an appropriate enough place for a first word, I suppose.

Earlier in the week, we'd been mocking each other. He would give me an evil, "HA... Ha... HA..." laugh. I would respond in kind. He would echo.

So at Red Robin, I handed him a big, fat, hot french fry. I looked him square in the eye and said, "it's HOT!"

He looked straight at me and said, "HO-!" (no, not like Santa, like 'HOT' without the 'T' sound)

That's right. He was talking about me. You might think he was just starting his mock laughter with me again. You might even think he was echoing my observation that, indeed, the french fry was hot. But you'd be wrong. I saw it in his eye. What he meant was, "No, Mom... YOU'RE HOT!"

I know, son... I know....