Monthly Archives: April 2014

Terrible two’s and Not Quite Two

Can terrible two’s start early?  I’m going to answer that for myself.  Yes.  Yes, they can.  I don’t know if they’re so terrible though when they’re so stinkin’ cute.  Exhausting.  Yet cute.  How do they learn so early to do the exact opposite of what you tell them?

“Ava, get down from there.  You can’t stand on that.”

What’s that you say?  Climb higher?  Climb faster?  Try and climb things as soon as you turn around?  Announce that I’ve climbed something by yelling DOWN MAMA!  DOWN! 

“Ava, Please don’t hit Max.  Be nice.”

Ok mama.  Pull Max’s hair and tail?  Slap his back?  Kick his bone away from him?  Give punches to his ribcage and roundhouses to his snout?

“Ava, please don’t crumple those cards.”

Ok.  I’ll just crumple, tear, and shred them instead while I chomp on them with my new teeth.

“Ava, you should be nice to your baby doll.”

Alright, mama.  But I’m just going to throw her down the stairs a few more times and then against the wall a couple more times too.

“Ava, you can’t feed Max your dinner.”

Ok, but I’m just going to give him three more bites and then I’ll dump my plate on his back.

“Ava, you can’t throw books at people.”

Ok mama.  I’m sorry.  But I’m just going to throw one more when you’re not looking so it hits you right under the eye.

No matter what new waters we’re treading on here it’s fun, it’s a learning experience, and there’s no doubt about it.  Kids are smart.  Even at a year and a half.

But at the end of the night when she snuggles up on my lap and we read together and she wraps her little arms around my neck and gives kisses while whispering mama, all is forgiven.

 

Thoughtful Reminders

One morning last week I checked my mailbox at work and found a super wonderful handwritten letter from my “work wife”.  This letter was so thoughtful and such a great way to start my day.  It was a reminder on how great our friendship is, it was a reminder of how we appreciate each other, and it was a reminder on how things have certainly changed in our lives.

While this letter was such a wonderful surprise it was also something of a reminder of things that I’ve gone through in the past.  But this time it was in a good way.  There were definitely some rough days a few years back and coming to work wasn’t always easy.  Especially when you needed to have a smile on your face and be that support for all the wonderful little gems in your classroom.

What did make it easier though was the support system I had waiting for me.  Morning meetings in my classroom to be sure I was ready to start my day, pop-ins with a smile and a  “how are you today,” cards and notes in mailbox, helping with morning routines from running late at appointments, little trinkets of care that I still carry with me till this day and, of course, Friday 4 o’clock club.  Sometimes it’s just these little things that mean the most to people, and it’s these little things that can get you through some of the worst of times.

So while these days were dark for a little while it was a reminder of how wonderful things have turned out and how the things we go through in our lives mold us into the people we become.  It’s a reminder that having good people in your life is important.

Grandmas

My grandma was very special to me.  She’s someone I have great memories with.  I always looked forward to a special weekend spent sleeping at her house.  We’d play rummy all night long, walk to the store multiple times a day, cook, shop, and sometimes we’d just spend the weekend talking and reading.  It was always special and memorable.

Sometimes she’d act as that buffer between my mom and me.  She’d always tell my mom why it would be okay for me to go here or there or why I shouldn’t be in trouble for certain things.  I’m sure my mom just loved this.

Then there came the news that she was sick.  It was cancer and it didn’t look good.  She never lost who she was through it all.  She came to live with us and we’d spend many nights sitting up late and talking.  I’d run to the used book store for her bag of books.  She could finish a book a day.  We even went shopping for her wigs and hats.  There were days where it felt like everything might be okay and there were some days that were not good at all.  I remember coming home and seeing her smoking.  Smoking!  With cancer!  Mad is not the word.  I felt betrayed.  I remember her talking to me about the inevitable.  That it was going to happen and there was nothing we could do to stop it.  I just couldn’t understand.  It felt like she was giving up.  A week later she was in the hospital.  We knew what was coming.  I was still so upset with her, but I knew what I had to do.  There was no way I could possibly not go and see her.  We spent almost the whole day together.  Visiting hours were long over, and it was time to go.  I held on as tight as I could to her frail body and told her how much I loved her and one day my daughter would be just as lucky to have as wonderful a grandmother as her.

Early the next morning I got the phone call.  It’s like we both knew that whole day that it would be the last.  I’m sure glad I made the decision to go see her.  One thing I do know is true.  My daughter certainly does have a grandma as wonderful as she was to me.

Why do I Care?

Why do I care so much?

How could you not care?

Do you know what they go home to each day?

Do you know what their told each day?  IF their even told anything at all?

Do they have to be afraid to go home?

Do they have to worry about heat and electricity?

Do they have something clean to wear?

Do they eat three meals a day?

Do they have to prepare their own meals?

Do they sleep on a bed?

Do they have to help their siblings with their homework before they do theirs?

Do they always have to study, read, and write alone?

Do they have time to play with friends?

Do they have to wake themselves and their siblings for school?

Do they even have time to be a kid?

Doesn’t sound like it to me.

So why do I care?

How could I not care?