Thursday, December 10, 2009

Getting It

Atop a wobbly stool I sit, one knee tucked under the counter, fingers stumbling across keys.

This is my escape. If I had the fortitude to do so, I would climb in and nestle against the steady hum of hard parts and slick wires.

I get it.

I do. Today my son and I debated the heroic traits of a cowboy and an astronaut. Maybe debate is too strong a word. He ran around the house with my old Woody doll (though my husband prefers "action figure") while calling him Buzz. I corrected him. A few times. I say debate. Call it what you will.

My daughter sang an aria. Her voice carried through the house, over the "Buzz" and the whir of the dishwasher. She punctuated her aria with shouts of agony attributed to two tiny buds forming on her tender pink gums. I spent an hour rubbing her gums while humming "You are my sunshine" and listening to Elmo drone on about going to the doctor.

I did brush my teeth. Granted it was after a lunch of stale crackers and celery sticks, brushed they are. My bicuspids do not keep time (though my incisors are rather annoyed at my tardiness from time to time).

The rhythm of my life is filled with the constant beat of fulfilling wants and needs. None of which are my own.

I'm OK with that.


I don't hate Facebook. Not really. It is like a sad little friend longing for attention. How can you hate the pitiful soul that wears too much blush and thinks stirrups are in? She spouts pithy statements about her life because in truth she longs for depth. She stares at the sink full of bowls of crusted oatmeal and mystery food, at the floor covered in Thanksgiving grime, the TV screen filled with purple dinosaurs and talking one-eyed monsters. She turns to the pulsing screen and faded keys for consolation when all she gets is a nod and a grunt from the fleshy figure that walks through the door mumbling about "me time."

Her fancy cookies, trips to Paris, and brilliant children are the flesh and bone of her existence. Facebook (Twitter, blogging . . . ) gives it life.

I get it. I do.

We all do what we must. Who am I to judge? Who am I to roll my eyes at photos of grinning children over a plate of iced gingerbread cookies with the Eifel Tower as the backdrop?

So maybe I'll roll my eyes a little. Just a little. And then I'll come up with my very own pithy statement.


Today I cut out little felt circles. I placed them on a larger piece of felt, stacking them atop one another to fashion a snowman. "What you do, mama?"JR asked.

"I'm making a snowman for you." I held up the pieces for him to inspect. He palmed them, feeling their softness between his palm and forefinger.

"It is a snowman, JR. We'll make real snowmen when the snow falls from the sky." The curious tilt of his head tells me he gets it. Images of snowsuits, sleds, and me and JR making snow angels crowd my thoughts.


"Yes, baby?" I am filled with anticipation.

He drops the small felt circles to the floor.

"Buzz." He picks up Woody and pulls his string. "There's a snake in my boots!"

"Honey, that's Woody." I gently correct him.


I pick up the circles and wonder how hard it would be to make a felt Woody. Or Buzz.


I lure him into the kitchen with the promise of strawberries and marshmallows. I toss marshmallows up and catch them in my mouth. He thinks it is the most amazing thing he's ever seen (his laughter is evidence). His little sister sits in her bouncer, amused at the squeals of her big brother. Their whoops and giggles fill the room. In only a few moments I find that I can "trip" and "fall" and JR is in near hysterics. His little sister can barely contain her glee. Larry. Curly. Moe. I'm all three to the delight of my children.

Walt Whitman once mused, "I am satisfied - I see, dance, laugh, sing."

I get it.

I do.

I totally do.


Unknown said...

Now I know why my wife was always pleading for adult company.

Kat said...

It is both wonderful and wonderfully blah all at the same time, huh? ;)
I am currently going on day number three without shower. I'm just sayin'.
The husbands will NEVER understand. But oh well.
Someday I will be going back to Paris and London. Just not today. Today I've got to get Joey to school on time in freezing cold temps. ;)

And life is good. :)

Karen said...

Another Woody fan! J has awesome taste. :)

Flea said...

I almost miss those days. My oldest were barely three and four when the youngest was born. Seven consecutive years of diapers. That I don't miss. Being their world? Making them smile and laugh effortlessly? That I miss.

The nice thing about teens, though, is that now they make me laugh. I can see the wheels turning, that they're working to do it, but it happens. I find I like my children nearly grown almost as much as when they were little. It's a good thing.

Tara R. said...

From my nearly empty nest, those days are wonderful memories.

Lisa @ Boondock Ramblings said...

I get it's wonderful, isn't it?

My son is so into superheroes and that worries me a little at times, but he cracks me up running around the house saying "I Ironman!" and then when I try to call him by name he says "No! I not Jonathan!I Ironman!" said...

Oh honey. You always make such beautiful pictures with words...

I know that you and your children will honestly treasure these glimpses into their childhoods, once they're all grown up...

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

Your joy is contagious.

Mozi Esme said...

Loved this post. It's wonderful to be a hero in their eyes by doing something as simple as catching marshmallows. And then there are the moments when you bust your butt and no one notices or cares, let alone appreciates. You've captured momhood well...

Momo Fali said...

I loved this. I really loved this. I could feel the felt in my hands.

Karen MEG said...

I have yet to get to Paris with the husband AND the baby that I was carrying (who was the reason I decided not to go when the stars aligned)...that was 10 years ago. Maybe if I wait long enough HE'LL be the one taking me?

Cherish these moments, and I know you are, L...they don't last forever, the kiddos do grow up FAST, and they don't look back.

My baby girl turns 5 in a week and it feels like a bit of a blur. I'm glad that she still likes felt :).

Sage Ravenwood said...

I often used to think I lost me, in those years of giving my daughter all my undivided attention. Now that she is grown and contemplating a family of her own. I get it. She gave me all the little parts of me - I didn't know I had. Loved this post. (Hugs)Indigo

I quit FB once and went back and I still don't see the allure. (Indy)

Kristen said...

I get it too. My favorite part was your statement "The rhythm of my life is filled with the constant beat of fulfilling wants and needs. None of which are my own."

Amen sister.

Once again loving your words!

And yes, isn't fb annoying most of the time. I swear it is like people watching at a restuarant.

Burgh Baby said...

Girl, you can write. Really write. I love that about you!

Secret Agent Mama said...

I miss you! I hope you know that you are one of my favorites EVER! I love you, too.

flutter said...

I love it when you pop up in my reader. love you

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