My dears, I have been out and about for the past few days, leaving me tired and exhausted at the end of the day instead of chipper and full of cheer, ready to write something that I daily pray is even mildly entertaining. We have also had an extended heat wave here in Glinda-land, which has tried the patience of even the most optimistic of my loved ones. Oh yeah, and out-of-town relatives coming in to visit, which will always be more attractive to me than sitting at the computer.
So, to make a long story short, sorry about the unexplained and unanticipated absence.
I suppose though, that many of you are beginning to gear up for the start of the new school year and are just as busy as me.
One of the things that I don’t miss from our formal schooling days are the damned supply lists that the school would email two weeks before the beginning of the semester.
I was buying everything from Kleenex to dry erase markers and everything in between.
Of course, it is technically not legal to send this list out, as public schools are supposed to provide students with everything except perhaps writing utensils. Is it better to have the families pay for it than the teachers? I guess so, except that I am sure there are some people who cannot afford everything on the list, which totals to about twenty-five items.
In my state, the idea that the state would actually pay for all needed supplies is a large joke which would have every parent doubling over with laughter. Hysterical laughter, most likely, but laughter all the same.
Does your school send out a list as well?
When I recently accompanied my son and a friend to our local county fair, I got a glimpse of my future for the next few years.
You see, my presence at the fair with them turned out to be that of a wet rag, a damper on all the fun they could be having if it wasn’t for grumpy old mom pointing out that they had run out of money for games, or that no, it wasn’t worth walking across the entire fairgrounds just to eat some chocolate covered-bacon.
But yet, I was also a necessary evil, as I was also playing the role of chauffeur, line stander, and ATM. But my son pretty much tried to act like I wasn’t really there most of the time, which is good, really. I mean, if he was holding my hand and begging me to ride the bumper cars with him, it would probably be some kind of red flag.
On the other hand, I’ve got my toddler, as needy as all get-out. She is an affectionate child, so I am often the recipient of hugs and kisses and sometimes elbows in the stomach, it all depends on just how affectionate she is feeling at the moment. She is still of course dependent upon me for a great many things, although she is much more independent overall than her brother was at this age.
It’s just really odd for me to have one child figuratively pushing me away as he gets older and tries to find his own footing in the world, and at the same time have this greedy little time-suck known as a toddler to deal with all in the same day.
Motherhood is hard, y’all.
90% of you do not agree with the rather heavy-handed tactics planned by New York City to promote breastfeeding to new moms. While I think we can all agree that it would be ideal if everybody could breastfeed, the harsh reality is that no, not every single mother can breastfeed. Whether it be due to health conditions, failure to latch properly, failure to produce enough milk, or simply having to go back to work, breastfeeding is difficult for many. To assume all mothers should breastfeed exclusively is to not live in reality.
Today I’m sort of excited about this.
Because I have a nine year old and a two year old, this summer we have often found ourselves spending countless hours seeking family activites that will be fun for everyone.
This is a lot harder than it sounds.
Usually my husband and I will talk about it the night before, and all will hinge on how the two year old sleeps. Or doesn’t.
If things are going reasonably well when we all wake up in the morning, my husband and I will again debate the merits of the chosen activity, by which I mean we discuss the length of the car trip to get there, the price of admission, will there be something there to interest almost all parties.
Twice in the last week we decided to take some fairly involved trips with a specific pricey destination.
Bad, bad idea.
When at the aquarium, my daughter could have cared less about ANY of the varied animals. She didn’t even care when a lorikeet landed right on my shoulder, right there for her to observe. She was momentarily entranced by the luminous jellyfish, but her interest in that waned sooner rather than later. She was upset when we decided to move back inside the aquarium after spending quite a bit of time in an outdoor play area. She was upset when I stood in line for us to touch some starfish, and she was upset when I left the line.
Let me also tell you that she was upset when everyone took turns with bathroom breaks, and as I was trying to physically contain a screeching, bucking child who was crying “Ouch, ouch!” even though nothing was hurting her whatsoever, a male passerby clucked his tongue and said, “Oh, poor thing.’
Um, hi, you mean me, right?
But in short, she acted like a typical two year old.
Of course I knew going into the trips that we could encounter problems, but we really wanted to see how much our daughter could handle.
Turns out, not too much.
Next time we will just have to split up, with one of us taking the older child to the “event” and the other one just taking the toddler to a park.
Just think of the money we’ll save!