Right now, a second cup of tea is brewing. The morning seems to call for it. Just in from picking blueberries with Kiddo and digging out lots of mallow~ their tiny pink flowers so cute but turning into those little green buttons which then become invading seeds. I used to have a pretty pink Lavatera plant, a member of the mallow family; loved it and killed it the way I have many plants, too much transplanting. Sadly, I was not always as kind and thoughtful toward the plants as I am now. (Although I killed a plant I moved at the wrong time in July, so my impatience still has its casualties.)
Inside now, Kiddo has a project going which involves Legos, Alene's Tacky Glue and a Sharpie marker. As these are his toys, I'm fine with it. We've had a lot of fun going on these days: found objects constructions; forts with multiple chambers, a library and a glowing 'bone pit'; trips to the Children's Museum; outdoor romps. Joe has just come in, jarring me from the writing as he tells me that the plums on our tree are being attacked by some sort of critter. We'll have to put bird block over the tree... work in the garden is rarely ever complete. I still have raspberry canes to prune (the old ones from spring) and others to brace up, so the fruit stays off the ground. It seems like only yesterday the summer batch of these golden berries were just winding up and now more are ready to pop.
Its been a while since my last post and this summer has most certainly clicked along at a quick pace. What about that book I mentioned in my last post "All Joy, No Fun"? I stopped reading it, mainly because when Kiddo wanted to know what it was about, it sort of hit me that reading that sort of book in front of him was a bit like saying "Eff You for Making My Life Hard" in a passive-aggressive sort of way. I mean, this might seem silly but he didn't ask to be born; if being a parent isn't easy, that's my problem. Somehow, it seemed akin to reading "Dealing with your Overbearing Mother" in front of that overbearing mother-- to put it politely, just a bit much.
So, ditched the book. Also decided to stop reading anything heavy in the fiction section; after two books about cancer (both written by funny lady authors, but still, again, two? A bit much.) Switched over the Carl Hiassen novel, one of those 'reporter finds himself in a debacle with gonzo characters in Florida because don't you know, Florida is chock-full of crazy?" that I love so much. It's total brain candy.
Unlike the other reading I've been doing, which is focused on parent infant psychoanalysis. (I'm sure I'm botching this up as I write this...) A very kind woman invited me to explore this in a discussion group, which I was hep for as I think this is interesting to study... and then I did a really stupid thing last weekend which I'm actively regretting: I messed up my ear. See, went swimming, had a bunch of water in the ear, went after it with a q-tip (that's the big no no right there, please learn from my mistake and use one of these methods for clearing your ear instead) and then tried one of the recommended methods of using a hair dryer to get the water out. When that didn't work, Mama called the doctor and the doctor looked and said "That's what you get for using a Q-Tip in your head".... namely, the problem was that I had pushed a gob of earwax into my inner ear and then, with the hair dryer (remember that hairdryer from two rows up?) I effectively hot glue-gunned my eardrum in a lovely wax casing. Doctor sent me off with prescriptions for an antibiotic ear drop, Sudafed for the pressure in my ear (because it does cause discomfort) and instructions to buy Debrox to loosen the wax up. Which is funny to me because that's what we used for Gus Kitty's ears when they got gross. I have a follow up in three weeks when the doctor will then use water to release the eardrum from its amber casing.
In case you were wondering... yes, I feel like an idiot. And in conjunction with feeling like an idiot, it is hard to read abstract stuff right now. So, the psychoanalysis readings are fascinating, but I am moving through them at at pace of a distracted, narcoleptic tortoise. It's embarrassing. The medication seems to have two effects: either my brain feels dull (esp with the white noise coming from inside the encased eardrum, it's a bit like living with a seashell cupped to one ear constantly) or the Sudafed makes it hard for me to just sit and concentrate, because oooh, shiny object over there! and I'm pulled away for fort makings or a frustrated moment or housework or dealing with playdate conflict even though having friends over is supposed to be easier for us (one of those words might qualify for air quotes, as it were, not sure if it's the 'supposed' or the 'easier').
"Doubly idiotic, sometimes we are." That's my inner Yoda talking. Days have swept by with bike rides, friends, more bike rides, more Legos, a few scrapes and bumps, and then, making new friendships as well. This summer I'm enjoying other moms more and finding new women I have a lot in common with. I've found that going to the park with other teacher moms is wonderful: there is no having to explain sight-lines, we keep all of the kids in our attention and are still able to chat. Problem-solving is simpler because we all have similar backgrounds and are on the same page when it comes to social coaching. Expectations are fairly similar as well. It makes things so much easier. I am truly enjoying the ladies in my life these days.
Well, that's the short update. We have had a great summer, Kiddo's made huge strides in getting comfortable in water; we'll still continue swimming lessons, and now he's able to shampoo his head and shower independently, which is huge for us. I think the judo lessons are giving him confidence in so many areas and this is one which we are seeing significant growth in. We are proud of him and proud of ourselves for having faith, waiting, giving him the time he needs. Next year we'll likely put him into a week-long parks and rec fishing camp. I see his mind just blossoming with ideas, more interests outside the scope of what he liked even a few months ago. He's taking more chances (and pressing boundaries, which comes with that development, so we're having to be thoughtful as parents in this area) and I think, as a whole, we are doing well~ aside from my repeated entreaties to 'talk into my good ear'.
The inconveniences are temporary. We keep learning and growing and I have to say, even on the hard days, I do like this family thing. Even when the guys are being a bit much, I wouldn't trade it for anything.