Monday, May 11, 2009

Peter Strikes Again

My son does nothing halfway. He is destined for greatness--

or for prison.

Tom and I are on a weeklong sugar fast for his soul, that it might be the former.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Top Ten Signs You Have More Than One Child

10) You wish you'd photographed your breasts to remember them before kids.

9) Your wildest fantasy is a solo trip to the grocery store.

8) The baby gets a monthly bath.

7) Your instructions for the sitter are verbal, and you know she is capable of finding the pajamas.

6) If no one's crying, it's a good enough pic for the Christmas card.

5) You have more pictures on the computer than the baby book.

4) I forgot. And so do you.

3) You no longer talk smack about the parents you see on Supernanny.

2) You've been caught throwing artwork away.

1) You have a celebratory dinner when the hpt is negative.

Monday, May 4, 2009

The Invisible Mother

When a homeschooling mom walks out on her family, that's news. Even if it happened 6 years ago. And so, amongst the internet discussion, I happened upon her blog.

Whatever one thinks of her decisions, I couldn't help but identify with this post on the invisible mother. After all, I live for affirmation. I could hardly wait for the parent-teacher conferences as a child, because I wanted to hear the scoop back from my mom on how great I was doing.

As a mother, things are tougher. My three-year-old simply isn't going to say, "Mama, the quesadillas tonight were delectable. Amazing that they turned out so well, since you were teaching me how to play Memory as you flipped them. And the way you cleaned the kitchen? Absolutely efficient."

And my husband, God bless him, just isn't the overly effusive sort himself.

What once bothered me most, though, in moments of self-pity, wasn't the lack of expressed gratitude. It was knowing that my husband did not see, and would probably never see, every last detail of my day's work. After a marital "discussion", I remember wishing that we had a video camera in the house, broadcasting the differences between my Sunday morning versus his. Surely, then, he would get it!

Yet he won't ever fully get it, any more than I will ever fully get what he does in a day.

We're not in the same shoes-- and if I let my happiness rest on his ability to imagine himself in mine, I'm going to be a very sad woman. (My husband is incredibly left-brained. He doesn't imagine, period.)

I've not let this bother me much lately, though. A turning point came when I realized that, while it's not my spouse or my kids, I do have someone who sees me. He sees every last tear, frustration, and joy. He sees every triumph and failure. He saw Hagar, the mistreated slave, crying desperately in the desert. He is El Roi, the God Who Sees.

He sees the juggling, he sees the dropped plates, but most importantly, he bids to me stop the performance, and find my rest in Him.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Growing Pains

A solid month without blogging? Clearly, I've been busy.

Peter's had a radical makeover. It started April 13th. I'd set aside the entire week to potty train, but we ended up only needing four hours. I guess that's the advantage of waiting until it's a no brainer. He could practically change his own diaper.

A few days later, he wore his first polo shirt. He still wears some smocked-insert tees, but it's time we worked in the real big boy stuff as well. Then, to top it off, he got a haircut which removed the last strands of white blond from his hair (he's now ash).

By the end of the week, I hardly recognized the boy coasting around the cul de sac on his bright red strider bike.

I've had to adjust. I find myself staring at him, studying his features, trying to see the baby I had a year ago... six months ago... Is it you? Is it really you? Did we do too much at once? I wonder if other mothers have this experience and, as he makes other transitions, if I will feel it this acutely.

Charlotte, meanwhile, will be six months tomorrow. It's going so quickly... I want her to stay a tub of taut flub forever, so warm and limber in my arms. I kiss her feet, her toes, her belly. I let her chew my fingers as she digs her nails into my cheek. "Kishhhhh, kishhhhhh," we say to each other, a word that she made up.

She's sprouting her first tooth, with another one just on the surface beside it.

How different things will be in a year.