It's just me and the rascals today. My parents, who occupy the guest suite, are still up North visiting and spreading joy. My brother Ben (who I keep calling Seth because Ben will always be that little blonde boy to me which Seth is now) is off to his drawing class in Raleigh. Dr. Gooch is off earning money to support my habit of child-rearing and home-making. It's just me and the rascals today. I made the mistake of blowing bubbles outside over the chalk drawings before breakfast and nearly fainted. Then we all came in and had toast from some wonderful bread gifted to us by our friend Heidi last night and I felt better. Then I sent the three oldest off to the tire swing. This was me:
"Please don't fight. Don't push either or go too fast. Wait for each other. Be nice. Just be nice and good. Please. Promise that you will, please." Okay! Slam.
Every child knows that a nod or grunt in agreement to these terms is just a ticket to freedom. Agree with mom and she'll let you go. And no child knows that behind the mind of these terms is two broken bones (one fresh out of its cast), potential screams, contention, bickering, and hurt feelings.
Every mother knows that deep down inside she just wants each child to make its own good decisions free and clear from the persuasion of percolating parents crouching in the wings. And yet we persist in making them "for and in behalf". Every child is confused by this. Just a touch more evidence of our insanity.
This is what you'll have for dinner,
what you'll wear and say and do today.
This is where you'll go this morning,
eat and sleep and pray this way.
But please be independent,
Think your own deep thoughts,
Be your own self daily
But eat these tater tots.
Yesterday Avery, the first rascal ever to put herself down for a nap. Free and clear.