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Monday, April 29, 2013

Successes

Me:  How was your day today, Charlie?

Charlie:  Well, I painted with Lori.  And I didn't put rocks up my nose.

Sounds like a successful day in the life of a toddler.  Personally, I wish that my definition of a successful day involved having the impulse control not to stick inorganic material into my nasal cavities.

Hell, most days I consider myself a success if I don't have a panic attack over something.  Elizabeth lipped off to me?  OMG, she is going to rebel and start using bath salts and get pregnant with a crack baby.   Alexis didn't want to eat dinner?  She is going to become anorexic and die from related heart disease.  The dog threw up?  He has heartworm and is going to die and then Charlie is going to lose her mind and become a serial killer.  So on, and so forth.  A constant battle against my crazy.  Against the forces that exist only in my own mind that tell me I am not good enough, smart enough, thin enough, professional enough, woman enough, strong enough.  Sometimes they even tell me I am not crazy enough.  What are you complaining for?  There are people who are hallucinating about demons from hell raping them anally and you are stressed over not being able to control your thoughts and anxiety and depression?

My successes in life are ones that people frequently point to when they want to highlight individual success in an attempt to downplay systemic oppression.  (Incidentally, there is no quicker way to bring out my crazy than to try to do exactly that.  Or to force me to listen to anything sung by Katy Perry.  Either/or.)  I was a teen mom.  I not only graduated from high school, I graduated a year early in the top ten of my class (again, despite the best efforts of my high school to get me to quietly drop out).  I graduated from college with honors.   I got my Master's degree, then my independent counseling license.  I am a homeowner with buttloads of debt.  I live a solidly middle class lifestyle.  I survived having to bury a child and miscarrying multiple other ones.  I successfully advocated for my own health and got potentially life saving treatment.

All of those things, however, don't matter if I can't function. If I can't enjoy life.  So I take my medications.  I constantly challenge myself; my irrational thoughts.  I actively seek out fun and laughter.  I surround myself with contentment and things and people I enjoy.  I seek out the absurd and look for the humor.  I cherish the perspective that comes from the innocence of my children precisely because it gets taken away all to quickly.

So yes, Charlie...it was a good day.  Keep on not inserting rocks where they don't belong.  Mama is proud of you.  But mostly, I am proud that I was able to tell you that rocks don't belong there, and that I am still here to hear about your painting.

I survived.  That is my success.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Rocks

Conversation with Charlie today:

Me:  Charlie, was that a ROCK that just fell out of your nose?

Charlie:  Yes.

Me:  What the...Charlie, rocks don't belong in your nose.

Charlie (genuinely surprised):  No?  Rocks don't go in my nose?

Me:  No Charlie.  Rocks go on the floor.  Or your hands; you can hold them in your hands.

Charlie:  No rocks in my nose?  Rocks don't belong in my nose? Or my mouth?

Me:  No rocks in your nose or your mouth.  Or your ears for that matter.

Charlie:  Rocks go on the floor or your hands ONLY.  Not your ears.  Not your nose.  Not your mouth.

Me:  That's right.

Charlie:  OK, Mama.


Notice how when she is doing something she isn't supposed to she calls me Mama, not Mom?  Children sure do have a knack for doing shit like that.  It is probably some kind of defense bred into them through generations of survival of the fittest.  Otherwise human parents would be abandoning their young left and right.

Really, Charlie?  A fucking rock?  I thought it was bad enough when you climbed on the stove to eat Alexis's birthday cake.  Or when you decided to learn to crawl up the stairs before you walked.  Or when you charmed the socks off of my OB during your C-section when the first thing he saw when he cut into my uterus was you making a kissy face at him.  You were all duck face before it became a popular Facebook meme.

I sure hope that means that you will be a good leader, like presidential material, vs a bad leader like Branch Davidian cult leader.  Honestly, some days it is only that hope that keeps me plugging away with you.

Glad I could clear up the confusion regarding the proper placement of rocks for you, though...

Monday, April 1, 2013

Toddler

I was contemplating today Charlie's tyrannical reign over our household.  It is so not fair what the little assholes that we refer to as toddlers get away with on a day to day basis.  So, seeing as how I have little else to do with my time because I sure as hell am not going to spend it doing things like laundry or housework or anything productive, really,  I started to think about how life as an adult would be if we were to act like toddlers.  Examples:

Returning from a bathroom break to a full staff meeting:

Me:  I WENT POOPY!!!!

Boss:  Did you wipe?  And wash your hands?

Me:  I used soap!


Charles gives me my dinner, my absolute favorite meal:

Me:  I don't like that.

Charles:  OK, then, don't eat it (goes to take the plate away)

Me:  I WANT THAT!  GIVE ME MY FOOD!  (arches back, bangs head on back of chair, then tips it over in a fit of rage.  I then expect to be comforted because of the injuries that I caused myself by not eating food that I love.)


Reading a blog on the Internet:

Charles:  OK, time to go to work, honey.  Put the computer away.

Me:  NO! (Runs to the other room and hides)

Charles:  You can either come with me or I'll carry you!  (Heads towards me and picks me up.  I instantly go limp and increase my weight magically and against all known laws of physics by about ten fold while shrieking like a demon from hell.)


Nap time:

Charles:  OK, time for nappy.  Let's go night night.

Me:  NO!  I NOT TIRED!  (while yawning and rubbing my eyes)

Charles tucks me into bed.

Me (five minutes later):  I HAVE TO GO POTTY!

Brings me to bathroom.  25 minutes later:

Charles:  Did you go?  No?  OK, you are playing.  Time for nappy.

Me:  I HAVE TO GO POTTY!  (Goes instantly limp; carried upstairs kicking and screaming.)

37 seconds later:  Sound asleep.


Seriously, it sounds so ridiculous when it is an adult acting like that.  Why do we let those little tyrants rule us like this?  If you ask me, they are way smarter than we are with that whole "My cognitive capabilities are not developed yet" thing.  In my next life, I want to remain a toddler forever.  I will happily trade being an adult for being forced to take a nap as the worst thing to ever happen to me.