Sunday, January 19, 2014

In Which Mommy Gives Dancer TMI

I walked into my room, expecting to see Dancer and Diva laying my clean laundry out on the bed for me to fold and put away. What I did not expect to see was Dancer with her arm through the front hole of her daddy's clean boxers all the way up to her elbow - complete with a very perplexed look on her face.

I stood there dumbstruck.

Mommy, why do all of Daddy's boxers have holes in them? she asked me.

At this point, having collected myself sufficiently, I took a deep breath and thought...You've totally got this, girl. Just be matter of fact about it....and brief.

Well, I said, boys have penises...just like your brother...and they stand up to pee. The hole is so they can pull it out and use the bathroom. Then they just....tuck it back in.

Dancer's eyes grew increasingly rounded during this explanation and as I wound down she looked at me - slightly horrified - and said,

No, Mom. I meant why do all of Daddy's boxers GET holes in them. 

At that point I decided discretion was the better part of valor and walked away. 


Thursday, January 9, 2014

Too Long Gone

I can always tell when I haven't been either reading or writing. It's like my head gets so full of half formed thoughts and frustration and tired that I can't accomplish anything. Because reading is where I fill myself up - with ideas and joy and knowledge. I cry and laugh at books the way some people do at movies. It's my relaxation and catharsis all in one. And writing...well, writing is my way of ordering what's been going on in my life and in my head and heart.

Neither has been happening. Reading? Who has time to read? The days start early and end late. Three kids - it's less than some people and more than others - but overall, kids are just hard. There are other words you can throw in there: blessings, joy, happy, special, maternal, rainbows, unicorns, gum drop raindrops. But really, raising little people is hard.

And writing? The last few weeks might have been depressing for my more faithful followers.

Because the holidays were bittersweet. Great! And Blessed! But bittersweet. Watching Little Bit look around somewhat bewildered at all the lights and paper and TOYS caused a pang. Somewhere in the vicinity of my heart. I watched him and thought, they should be here. The gap that is always there between Diva and Little Bit seemed larger and emptier somehow with the Christmas tree in the corner.

Then I watched him take his first steps. He let go of his daddy and took one....two....plop! right into my lap. After watching him travel back and forth, wearing out his little legs and resembling nothing so much as a tiny drunk, I could - just for a minute - see them there with us. They should be here.

When I heard of someone's baby dying over New Year's, I wept for them. When I heard another family lost their child, I wished I had some comfort to offer. I listened to a friend rage against her child's illness.

It all piles up. Until it feels like my heart is in my throat. Until my eyes ache with the tears I don't have time to cry.

Joy and Sorrow can and do coexist quite peacefully. That, at least, is a lesson I've learned. Admitting to the Sorrow doesn't negate my joy. It just means that life, real life, is full of both.