Precious (...yeah, we'll go with that) Moments

So I'm one of those people who vacillates between "OMG THIS WILL NEVER END FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE JUST SHUT. UP. FOR. FIVE. EFFING. SECONDS" and "THEY'RE GOING TO BE TOO BIG FOR THIS NEXT WEEK *sob* WHY CAN'T THEY STAY THIS LITTLE FOREVER".  Otherwise known as "insane". 

This week has been the epitome of all of the above.  Make Something Monday was constructing a box fort.  It was awesome.  There were hours upon glorious hours of happy, cooperative, imaginative play happening.  It was one of those stick-with-you-forever kind of days that will hang around with a beautiful, golden haze and revisit you when you're sitting on the porch fifty years down the road thinking about life and apple pie and the meaning of it all. 


Nobody says you have to be "mommy and daddy" while playing house.
Take a Trip Tuesday was a trek to the zoo.  Also awesome.  Curious questions, imitations of animal noises, much extremely loud speculation about all aspects of animal anatomy.  SO CLOSE to being another banner day.

This panda represents my energy level.

And yet.  Being the masochist that I am, even though it's that time of the month right now, I forged ahead with the zoo plan.  This meant frequent restroom stops.  With company.  In the same stall.  The 6-year-old has seen this show before and if he doesn't fully grasp the whole "expelling a horror show of a nest for a baby that mom's body isn't going to use" concept, he's at least learned to stop asking.  The 4-year-old, however...nope.  In a very crowded bathroom, he demanded VERY alta voce, "WHY IS THERE BLOOD IN YOUR BITS?!  DO YOU HAVE A BOOBOO?  CAN I SEE?"  By my estimation, at least 75 women in the greater Washington, D.C., area learned a significant amount of detail about my menstruation that day. 


Walking Wednesday just didn't happen, at least in the geocache sense.  We'd stayed the night with my family in the D.C. area and were going to try and see the Lincoln Memorial, but the weather wasn't great and I really wasn't interested in trying to deal with the whole finding-a-bathroom-on-exceedingly-short-notice issue on the wide open expanse of the National Mall.  (Oh, PS, sorry to anyone who doesn't care to hear about any of these personal details, but pretty much all women have to deal with this and none of us choose to have to deal with it, so, company, join misery in sucking it up.) 


Instead, we visited the Udvar-Hazy Center, which is like an annex of the National Air and Space Museum located out near Dulles, and which has LOTS of restrooms, god love 'em.  We've been many times before and it's always a hit, so I knew that even with me running on empty we'd have a positive experience and head home on a high note.  Which we did.  Kind of.

See, there was this story time thing.  A retired principal from the area, very nice lady, had told us to gather under one of the helicopters at a certain time and she'd read a book to us and we'd do an activity and talk about helicopters.  Sounded great.  The boys were on board.  We arrived on time, sat ourselves down...and then the 4-year-old, who apparently was COMPLETELY DONE after 1.5 full days of amazing behavior, began to slowly roll around the floor mat like a log, chanting "chop chop chop" a la Thomas the Tank Engine's Harold the Helicopter in the middle of this woman talking.

Horrified, I made my way around to his side and scooped him into my lap, the better for hissing threats into his ear.  While I was putting out that fire, the 6-year-old had apparently raised his hand and was called on by the lady.

"What book do you have?" he asked.  She showed him a book about a little girl engineer who designs flying machines.  "Huh.  Okay, but do you have anything by Brad Meltzer?"  Who is, apparently, the only author my son will acknowledge for public readings.  My arms were not long enough to poke him, so I death-glared in his direction to try to convey you will listen to whatever book she is going to read and you will like it and we can discuss other books later.  I'm not sure if you've ever tried to send telepathic messages to your children, but they have EXTREMELY effective firewalls.

Twenty minutes later, after the 6-year-old corrected the poor story lady volunteer 18 times about the mechanical workings of helicopters versus airplanes and also she was skipping words, why didn't she just read all the words, and the 4-year-old managed to end up with his face under my ass and his feet in my lap (but I didn't care, because at least that way he was quiet), it was finally over and I could make a run for it, dragging the two of them behind me because THAT WAS NOT A LIFETIME MEMORY MOMENT AT ALL IN ANY WAY.

Thoughtful Thursday was a recoup day.  I had (...have) some house cleaning to do and it was a rainy, overcast day, so I was hoping everyone would be kind of low key and play in their play room or watch a cartoon or, you know, ANYTHING resembling being a member of the human race who understands appropriate social interaction.  BUT NO.  Thursday it all hit the fan.  Good behavior was completely exhausted and the kids devolved into feral howler monkeys.  After a record high number of time outs, they went from turning on each other to turning on themselves so our thoughtfulness project became "caring for ourselves", during which there was much eye-rolling on the 6-year-old's part and much WTF-ing on the 4-year-old's part ("I don't get it, Mom, I'm awesome.").  But in the end, I felt I'd made a clear breakthrough and a tangible tool for the 6-year-old to use during low self esteem moments.

I managed not to laugh directly in his face when he said "clean" as a self-descriptor.  At least I'm a better mom than *that*.

Life was SO GOOD.  For five minutes.  And then feral howler monkeys again.  I booted them out into the yard, crossed my fingers the neighbor wouldn't call CPS for all the screaming, and did more laundry.

AND THEN DADDY CAME HOME AND THEY BATTED THEIR EYELASHES AND ASKED HIM SWEETLY ABOUT HIS DAY AND ISN'T THAT JUST GREAT THAT IS JUST SO GREAT

So today I've abandoned all hope.  We did our Free Book Friday, didn't burn down the library (or the theater where the summer reading program was hosting a kids' author), ate lunch instead of one another, and now if I can just change the sheets and think up a novel's worth of apologies to my mother-in-law for when she arrives this weekend and our house still looks like a gorilla with epilepsy just left, I'll call it good.  And if I can sneak into the shower and eat a chocolate bar, I'll let that be the moment I hang onto for this day.


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1 comment:

  1. I'd upgrade to the king size Reese's Peanut Butter Cup sleeve, it were me. I am running to research the proper terminology for raptor genitalia for when the boys come for a visit. When barraged for knowledge by a 4- and a 6-year-old, one should be prepared to come correct.

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