“Dad, which picture do you think I should color?” the eight year old asked. “The one with the hearts or the one with the flowers?”
“Definitely the one with the hearts” I responded.
“I think I want to do the one with the flowers.”
“I don’t know — what do YOU think she does with them?”
“Hmm — maybe. Or maybe she makes strings for Christmas trees out of teeth instead of popcorn!”
AM I getting too caught up in the moment? It is after all her FIRST TOP tooth and only her 4th to date — poor kid waited through the entire first grade and most of second before she lost even ONE tooth. You think I’m not gonna participate? What kind of mother would I be?
“I think she decorates her house with them . . .”
(Yeah, I agree. That image is best left up to the imagination . . .)
Last night as I was tucking Hanna into her cozy bed, I reached up to turn off her lamp and reminded her to turn off the DS Lite she was playing. She sighed a deep sigh, rolled over onto her side and said in the darkness, “Mom, sometimes I just have to have a BIG SIGH when I think about all the things I have to do just to make it through . . .” her voice trailed off into the quiet and my heart lept into my throat.
For an eight-year-old, Hanna certainly *does* have a lot on her plate. She does multiple blood sugar tests and shots each day, counts her carbs at every meal and tries to pay attention to whether she is feeling “low” or “high” at any given time in between. There is a lot of work on all our parts that goes into making it through every single day. However, we rarely discuss how these things affect her daily routine — around here it’s just part of life, pretty much like taking a multi-vitamin or wearing contact lenses. In the 4 years post-diagnosis, Hanna has had maybe 3 meltdowns about this routine. Three. So I hesitated briefly, knowing that what I said at this point would mean the difference between tears or giggles. I decided it was too deep to be left alone, even for eight.
“What do you mean, sweets?” I tried to keep my tone light as I perched on the side of her bed in the darkness. (Me and the 500 webkinz.)
“Well, it’s just that when my game doesn’t save, I have to start all over again. I have to fight the dragon again, and then there’s all the other levels — it’s just, it’s really hard.”
(Thank-you God for nice dark bedrooms.)
“I’m really sorry, baby — I’m sure you’ll do just fine tomorrow.” (deep breath, deep breath — NO laughing!)
And she will. She always does.
Because even though there will always be new dragons to fight, for now, the only ones that concern Hanna are the ones on her DS Lite. Which tells me we are doing something right. And that all is as it should be in the world of this 8 year old.
CAUTION: The following food is highly addictive. Taste at your own risk. If you can’t help yourself, be sure not to purchase more than you can safely consume in a single sitting. Do not share unless it is completely unavoidable and then plan to diet for 6 years as penance.
From the WS website: “Our brittle is an irresistible twist on the classic American confection. Toasted pumpkin seeds and microbrewed California ale give it delicious character, enriched with a hint of traditional pumpkin pie spices and Indonesian vanilla. The all-natural brittle is handmade in small batches by master candymakers, then cooled on a marble confectionery table, where it achieves a rich golden color and satisfying crunch. Dusted with sugar and cinnamon, it will make a memorable gift for the candy lover. 11 oz. A Williams-Sonoma exclusive.”
So where is the warning label? Uh huh, yeah. I think there is room for a lawsuit here.
Ah, women. Being a man, I am constantly reminded that I have a lot to learn about women in general. But I want to examine an incident that occurred today that takes us far beyond the typical male humor scenarios that we all know and appreciate about the fairer sex.
Tonight I had the privelege of talking through the emotions. Being the kind and sensitive man that I am, I asked questions – and listened, intently – striving to understand, not just nod my head in agreement as I had to talk her down from the emotional precipice.
“So what has you so upset?” I asked.
“Sometimes I feel like I just can’t hold it together” she replied.
“Well, what do you think would help you hold it all together, do you need to talk, or do you just need time to yourself?”
“No…” she replied.
“Well, sweetheart, what is it that you think you need?” I asked again.
“Dessert” she responded. “Dessert is the only thing that helps me hold it together when I can’t hold it together”, she stated emphatically.
“Really, what kind?”.
“Ice cream, chocolate cake, just.. dessert.”
“My dear… you are your mother’s daughter.” I told my six year old.
What does this mean for me? Does this mean I can no longer technically refer to him as “my baby?” I certainly hope I won’t be breaking any cultural morays by doing so because I’m afraid there’s no way to give up that habit at this point. And why start now anyway? People have long thought I was missing a few bricks by referring to him as my baby ever since he was out of diapers.
I guess my first incident with this terminology occured 2 years ago (I remember the date, but it’s not like I’m scarred or anything) when a decorator stopped by to inspect the flooring fix her crew had installed and upon hearing me remark about “the baby” looked at Spencer, looked around and then asked with WAY too much confusion (I mean, really people, who is that confused? Seriously!) “Wait, where is the baby?” I guess she was simply expressing genuine concern that I had perhaps either a.) misplaced him or b.) misspoken out of some secret longing to have another baby. WHAT?? Wash your mouth out! (I was totally horrified.) All I could manage were some wild arm gestures in the general direction of my then 3 year old son while attempting to articulate that there, (THERE, darnit) . . . is my baby!
The thing is, despite my protestations, he continues to grow up and there’s nothing I can do (or would do) to stop him! But I really do have to wonder if it’s not a latent result of some of the company he keeps.
(I mean really, who came up with this disturbing mantra anyway? C’mon Disney! Stop filling our young son’s mind with these sorts of ideas!)
And to make matters even more emotional (yes, yes, it really is possible, just ask my husband) our sweet boy just entered the room with a beautiful stem of yellow (his favorite color for the past 5 years) flowering weeds — “here Mom, I found these flowers for you. It’s for you because your rock [last week’s gift] broke.”
MELT! MELT!! I tell you!!
It’s a good thing I’ve got a full year to come to terms with the thought of him turning 6.
*GASPING FOR AIR*
A while back I read a great little article on how to make people wonder… one of the suggestions was to finish every sentence with the words ‘in accordance with prophecy’. It stuck with me, and while I haven’t had to employ it frequently (as I find people are constantly in a state of confused wonder), I have found another ‘-ism’ that works well at the end of just about every sentence.. (in accordance with prophecy).
It also comes in handy for replacing the old phrase used when there was nothing left to say (especially in the south) of “I’m just saying is all…”. Yes, now there appears to be a new front runner (in accordance with prophecy. I’m just saying is all..).
“Because that’s how we roll”.
Thanks to the not-so-southern-belle for bringing it to light for our entire family to enjoy, because that’s how we roll.
When asked what she wanted for our anniversary, my wife answered a ‘Wii’. I was taken aback at the clever suggestion for ‘steel’ (hey – it has ‘metal’ parts in it), and knowing her fondness for video games in general was almost prompted to ask ‘ who are you and what have you done with my wife?’. Then I learned of the Wii fit – the real reason behind the interest.
I never realized exercise could be fun. Sure there are the games that make you exercise and all that, but I am talking about ‘Free Step’ – one in particular where you simply step off and on until you either physically collapse from exhaustion, or sweat so profusely that you have to leave to grab a towel.
Because I am sure this will be the first of several posts about the wonders of the Wii Fit (including some legal ideas on how to sue Nintendo for the lack of warning labels provided), I wanted to start on an uplifting note.
Free step allows you to do whatever else you want to with your TV while you step. Watch it, shout at it, or – and this is my favorite – play your Xbox 360. And what better way to exercise than to play Assassin’s Creed? I realize it doesn’t have the same flair for the dramatic as a Richard Simmons video might, but there is nothing quite like storming the castle walls as your Wii remote tells you “1500 steps! Keep up with me!”.
Here I am, Wii stepping my way to my next assignment, losing pounds in the process…
Oh sure – you laugh now – but let’s see you hit 40 hours in under a month and get a gold piggie bank.
I never thought I would actually be able to say that I am in favor of McCain for President. I certainly was never in favor of Obama, but after reading the Rick Warren interviews with both candidates this past weekend, I am taking a second look. . .
If you are interested – check out the full transcript online.