Monday, November 15, 2010

Bye bye binkie

Trip to the dentist today revealed Charlie's teeth and bite are officially taking a hit from the pacifier. Booo...

Never could get Charlie to call it his binkie or any other such cute name. He calls it his "wire". Appropriate I think, considering it's attached to him at all times (if he has his say in the matter).

I know he'll survive, but I'm not sure I will. This was the last remnant of babyhood he had left.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Trafficking Nail Polish Remover

There have been days in my life where everything went wrong, I ran out of gas, burned a hole in my favorite shirt, spent three hours driving somewhere only to find it closed... whatever. Then I became a mom, and almost every day is like that.

Last night Jamie got up at 1:30 with a splinter in his foot that I misdiagnosed and paid for by 5 am. Charlie kept throwing his covers on the floor only to wake up a shivering little mass of tears. I'm so good at navigating the space between my bedroom and theirs that I can do it without putting on my glasses or turning on any lights...that is unless the dog decides to plant himself somewhere in the middle, in which case the floor gets a german shepherd/blind girl sandwich. The funny thing is, almost every night is like that. Charlie sleepwalks into a closet door... Jamie wakes up thirsty (and by the sound of it, will die any moment of dehydration)... Jamie is convinced we're all going to eat breakfast without him... Jamie is convinced he can't sleep without the dog... I'm pretty sure it's been a good 5.5 years since I last slept through the night.

But it's not that motherhood is difficult and exhausting, it's more like your body morphs and adjusts and you have loftier goals. Because all those bad days? Really not that bad. I try to think of it like a CEO. If a pizza delivery kid had to run Google for a day, it would probably be the worst day in his life, at the very least it would be the most challenging day of his life. But if you're a real CEO, then you wanted that job, it's what you'd been working towards your whole life. So all those lives you have the capability of ruining? All the Stress? All that money you have to answer for? It's really just your new normal.

So when I got caught shoplifting at Target for stealing finger nail polish remover, I reminded myself it was not an unusual day. This was my idea of fun. I could have been on the phone like Jim, talking to cranky doctors and working out contracts. Instead I was profusely apologizing to a Target employee for my son who had tried to be helpful by bagging up our purchases...prematurely. Curses on reusable shopping bags. They sit in shopping carts tempting small fingers to fill them. I walked away from the experience, only to discover two more (very small) unpaid items in my bags, which I then had to confess and pay for. I got in even bigger trouble the second time, and they certainly didn't congratulate me on my responsible values.

Today I brought home a forty dollar bottle of champagne I did not want, but yet somehow bought anyway. I'm not sure what happened. Costco is one of those places with checkout counters where you go one way and your cart goes the other way. Not a good situation when you have two tap dancing monkeys in the cart. They escaped, I of course was a whole counter away (not close enough to enact a successful death stare), and acrobatics ensued. There was more employee angst, and suddenly I ended up at my car with a receipt for way more than I thought I'd spent. Some people would never make a mistake like that, they probably have a policy against signing receipts without looking at them. However I am not one of those people.

Which brings me to supermoms. They don't exist. Everyone complains bitterly about the hapless supermom, but it's so far past cliche these days it needs to be stricken from the English language. Supermom is made of glass and stuffed with straw. We only set her up when we want to rant about someone but can't name names. We do it (I think) to make ourselves feel better, which is what I'm doing now. I just compared my life to a CEO, and yet I've stooped so far below what a good mom should be, I don't even know what she looks like anymore.

But I did buy an unopened Psalty record today at the thriftstore for a dollar. That makes me happy. It makes Jamie and Charlie happy too. It's been a long time since I rocked out to "Arky, Arky".

Oh, and I lost Charlie somewhere in a McDonalds playplace. Those twisty, plastic maze things swallow children whole.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

The year of the bees...

So many things I want to write down to remember. Like Jamie can read now, Charlie has finally made it out of the zero percentile for height and he says "peep-a-peet" for "trick-or-treat". Jamie did not inherit my sense of direction, as he quite regularly tells me things like "are we going to take the 15 or the 125 to Great Grandma's house?", he also works as a mini navigation system if I'm off in la la land. I get annoyed because driving used to be the only time I could think for a few minutes without being interrupted, but those days are gone.

Mostly though, this has been the year of the bees. If bugs were chess pieces. Spiders would be rooks because they can only move laterally. House flies and ants would be pawns and bees would be the queen, because they move every which direction and have an uncanny ability to check mate. Last year we had whole nests of bees and I lived in holy fear they would sting us...of course, we never got stung. This year there is nary a bee around. A few in the garden, a few flying here and there but nothing out of the ordinary. My poor children however, have had the worst luck. Jamie got stung in the foot, and it swelled up so bad it looked like someone blew up a latex glove and painted it purpley red. Last week he was playing outside and a bee flew up his boxers and stung him right in the nether regions. I sort of panicked, not knowing if private parts needed different treatment for stings than other areas, so I called his ped. Turns out abnormal swelling and itching are the biggest symptoms of a sting in that area. All week I've had to explain to concerned looking parents that Jamie really isn't doing what it looked like he was doing. Thankfully everyone was more than understanding and it healed up just in time for Charlie to get stung in the neck on Monday. It looked like a jungle native nailed him with a poison dart to the carotid artery. Such a pleasant picture for one's baby. It got him out of his scheduled immunizations that day though, so I guess there was a silver lining from Charlie's perspective. I sympathize with his pain, as I personally would rather take a whole platter of vaccinations over a bee sting.

I almost feel like banning the outdoors as I'm pretty sure we must have blinking signs over our heads saying "sting me...sting me.". Although yesterday I caught Charlie trying to catch a bee with his bare hand, so that may have something to do with it as well. Our trusty dog is an ever present help in times of trouble as Barnabas views bees as a tasty delicacy. He snaps them right out of the air and eats them with grace and panache. I need to clone him though, as he has a hard time being near all three of us at the same time.

I took Charlie's two year old portraits finally. You'd never guess it was the same location as Jamie's. Amazing how the landscape can change so fast. Charlie's such a funny looking little chap. I tell Jim he has as many moods as a pms'ing girl...until I'm actually around a pms'ing girl and then it's manifestly obvious he isn't nearly as bad as I think he is.