Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Hello, SuperNanny?

Just spent several days in meltdown-land with the four year old, and I'm really looking for a map or an arrow or a guide or a big freakin' neon sign or something to point me out of this minefield. We seem to have crossed more firmly into the realm of Daniel wanting to do everything himself. I love the independence he is showing, and I certainly do admire his persistence. If only I could do something about his frustration level.

It could be anything that sets it off. Getting his socks on, the building blocks that won't go together, wanting dessert when he hasn't eaten his meal yet (and of course being told no!). And woe betide me if I offer help, or even just directions. Trying to move things along by say, implying that if the socks and shoes are not on then you can't meet your friend Marisa at the library just transfers the storm. Instead of wailing about the socks I get wailing about NOOO! I WANT TO GOOOO!

Other responses run the gamut of ignoring him (made all the more difficult when the aforementioned wailing involves much clutching of Mommy's legs) to picking him up and removing him bodily from a situation. Or in the case of being at home, plunking him in his room and shutting the door for a time out.

Maybe it's a school adjustment? He's been a champ at preschool, and I've talked to some folks who have suggested that some kids expend so much energy being "on" and "good" at school that they do a bit of a fall-apart when they get home in a safe environment. I'm not sure yet. I just want to get back to some cheery interaction with my kid.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

A Full Day

Finally got in for Daniel's four-year appointment a bit belatedly. I wasn't really realizing that we would be getting three shots today. You'd think I'd be a wee bit immune what with all the pokes kids get but his pain still drives me immediately to tears.

On the flip side, I'm still tickled at my little chatterbox telling the doctor all about school and his teacher Miss Katie and firetrucks and I like the red ones and the green ones - the green ones are the airport fire trucks, you know. And then he held up the toy dinosaur that he had brought with him and proclaimed that there are no more dinosaurs - They're all stinked!

Shots wiped the both of us out a bit, and so it was only after a nap that we hit the park to enjoy the glorious Fall day. A little boy around Daniel's age popped up and said What's your name? Daniel.

What's your name? Matt.

Let's play together! And the two proceeded to chase around and around the playground for the rest of the afternoon. Loving my little social butterfly!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Remembering - and onward...

Things were a whirl yesterday. Like so many, September 11th gives me pause. A flashbulb moment, we all have recollections of what we were doing that day.

I was an executive assistant at a B2B publishing company outside of Boston. My early-bird routine had become established once I had married in 2000 and moved westerly. Getting on the road early eased my commute, gave me some time in the office without distraction and enabled me to get a bit of a jump on my demanding boss. Thus I was already at work as events began to unfold. Time has blurred things just a bit, and I don't recall the first indications of something wrong. I remember hopping on the Internet, moving from news site to news site trying to get updates. Staying on the line with the terrified wife of one of our sales reps - she knew her husband was traveling that day, but did not know his itinerary. The relief as we tracked him down. The hush in the office. Thinking of colleagues in New York. Someone had pulled a TV into the atrium so that anyone who stopped in could keep up with any televised news. The shock of realizing that two gentlemen who had dinner with my boss the evening before had lost their lives on Flight 11.

I struggle to find a balance. I have many moments where I want to go on a "media diet" of sorts. Forgo any news of the economy, of 9/11, of the thefts and murders and horrible things that go on in the world. Balance. To never forget, and yet to not have the awfulness that is out there pull me down like quicksand.

It is eight years later, and my world is different in so many ways. I am a stay at home Mom of a beautiful little boy. And this year on September 11th he ventured out to his first day of preschool. I choose to look at the world with the same hope and excitement I saw on my little boy's face yesterday.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

All in an 8 Gallon Tank

Condo living limits our available space, options - and often even a desire to have a pet. Daniel got a fish tank for his birthday from Grandma and Grandpa. Setting it up has felt a bit like an exercise in how to do everything wrong. Put the fish in too soon, whoops - we're supposed to have a heater? Two out of four fish croaked by the first morning.

Lucky for me we haven't had them long enough for any real attachments to develop... Had the two remaining guppies for a week or two, and while I've been trying very hard not to overfeed them I couldn't help but think they were acting strangely. Steeling myself to find them belly-up in the near future I went to feed them the other day. Only to find a mini-cloud of nine little fish babies buzzing around the tank! I pointed them out to Daniel, but when I went to peek at the tank after lunch the whole lot of itty-bitties were gone. Apparently they were yummy? Ack!

Daniel puzzled over things when my parents lost their dog Sophie. We even had our own (imaginary) dog named Sophie who came to hang out with us for awhile. I'm just grateful to have skimmed over the hard questions on this one so far... but the guppies are still acting strangely.