Have a happy and merry one, friends. I love you like crazy cakes! You save my life all the time. Thanks for it.
Have a happy and merry one, friends. I love you like crazy cakes! You save my life all the time. Thanks for it.
We’ve been reading a great book with T called Daddy Christmas and Hanukkah Mama, about being in an interfaith family. I highly recommend it. It gave me the idea of eating latkes for Christmas breakfast (yum). The book has actually inspired me to try to come up with some tradition blending of our own, and we’ve been having a blast sprinkling Hanukkah gelt in the Christmas stockings and going on a hunt for the latke food truck on our way to see Santa.
We’ve also been going to church lately. We’ve been hopping around, trying out a few different churches, seeing if there’s a place we feel we fit in- weird, interfaith, transracial, looking-kind-of-like-a-boho-biker-gang family that we are. Strangely, finding a church we like is more important to Hanukkah Mama than it is to Daddy Christmas. I loved the rituals and traditions of temple growing up and I feel compelled to offer my son a similar experience. It doesn’t really matter to me whether it’s temple or church, it just matters that it feels like home and gives him a shared experience of the sacred. My belief in the importance of offering T a racially diverse community whenever possible leads me to lean toward church.
I had a very personal and present relationship with God as a child. I think that relationship made me good at being alone. I always had this other thing- a light behind me, a hand to steady me- that kept me from being lonely. Some people naturally gravitate toward a dialogue with God. Some people don’t need it, don’t want it, don’t believe it. I’ve always been able to see it from both sides and they both make sense to me. But me, I have the God impulse. I don’t expect to necessarily ever find a satisfactory answer, but I’ve resigned myself to the search anyway.
Scott, on the other hand, couldn’t stand church as a kid. Church was the place that he got stuffed into a suit and made to sit still to make his grandfather happy. It was a place of discomfort and obligation. But he’s being a champ about the whole church thing. We’ve been having a nice time getting up on Sundays and getting a little bit dressed up (which T loves to do- he’s a dapper little dude by nature), going to church and then going out to brunch with friends. It’s becoming a sweet ritual in our week.
It’s not enough for me to talk to God in my bedroom alone; I want to share the experience. And I’m just gonna say it- it’s all the same thing. Temple, church- whatever. It’s a place to feel a part of the human race in a way that transcends the constant brain chatter, a place to stand together and sing together and remember that we belong to each other.
Happy holidays from Hanukkah Mama, Daddy Christmas and T, just T, who gets to be whatever he wants to be!
You could hear a cracking sound last week, as if the world’s largest tree had just been split down the middle by lightning. The sound of collective heartbreak.
There are far smarter and more knowledgeable people than I talking about gun control and mental health care issues right now. I think it’s obvious where I stand on both. Yes. Yes, gun control. Yes, health care. Yes. Please.
My two favorite parenting-related posts on the tragedy are Kristen Howerton’s Five Things to Consider Before Talking to Your Kids About Today’s Tragedy and Claire Bidwell Smith’s Holding Them To My Bones.
I do feel compelled to comment in greater depth on the issue of trauma. How do we respond to trauma and the resultant fear, both as individuals and as a collective? Do we build a higher fence around our homes and our hearts? Do we vow to be the one with the biggest stick next time, so that no one will ever make us feel this afraid again?
This is a literal question in terms of gun control, but it is also a spiritual dilemma that I believe is becoming more and more urgent for us as a society. Every day our soldiers return from war, PTSD sending shock waves through their lives and relationships. Children flood the social service system, manifesting the emotional scars of abuse and neglect. And, as is on all of our minds, the children who survived that Sandy Hook bloodbath will have to eventually learn how to wake up again in the morning and live- hopefully lives in which they can love and trust and feel safe. We are faced with the frustrating and elusive task of healing wounds you can’t see.
I have had many people look at me skeptically when I discuss the impact of early childhood trauma or the devastating effects of PTSD. I think people have a hard time considering a slippery, invisible emotional problem, with very few black and white answers. It is hard to sit with the pain of others. It is hard to be a witness to the suffering of our fellow humans, especially children, and not know how to address it. But denying the existence of the wounds won’t make them go away, won’t absolve us of the responsibility to heal them.
Trauma treatment is a more complicated subject than I can get into in this internet-attention-span-friendly post, but I can tell you that none of the treatments, none, involve arming people with a bigger stick. Trauma victims are deeply afraid in places to which the conscious mind doesn’t even have access. You can’t treat fear with more fear. You have to go at it with love. With conscious, patient, and fearless love.
If you’re interested in healing modalities for early childhood trauma, Heather T. Forbes and Bryan Post are two of my touchstones. And for my money, Christine Moers at Welcome to My Brain is the sanest, coolest trauma mama around. I also love Pets for Vets.
I wish healing for all your invisible hurts. I wish light for you, in these dark winter days.
An essay about my visit to Auschwitz-Birkenau is on The Rumpus today.
It took me a long time to write the essay. I started it twelve different ways and nothing I wrote seemed to express my experience with any degree of emotional truth. But sometimes when words aren’t enough, we have to write them anyway. Because silence isn’t the answer either.
Happy Hanukkah. It’s a holiday about bringing light into the year’s darkest days. I wish light and love to you all tonight.
I’m at the Krakow Airport, after a trip more beautiful and sad and cold than I expected. I’m eating a bagel (they’re all the rage here), staring at an empty tarmac and hoping that my delayed flight will get me to Munich on time to make my connection.
Krakow brings to mind the kind of old Europe that reminds me of my great-grandmother. A large part of my family comes from the eastern part of Galicia (the southern part of Poland). The town we’re from is now in the Ukraine, but at one time it was all the same country. The food here smells like my house did during the holidays. The Jewish history of the city is palpable and tragic and you can feel it wherever you go, even in the souvenir markets. The deep Antisemitism that existed in Poland before the war has, in many cases, been replaced by a kind of nostalgia for the decimated culture. There are lots of “Jewish style” restaurants and Kazimierz (the old Jewish quarter) is now the vibrant, trendy area of town, with tons of pubs and galleries. The markets are filled with carved wooden figurines of Jews in traditional garb, like the ones pictured above. I wasn’t sure how to feel about them.
I felt particularly moved by the old temple and the cemetery at Remu, built in 1553. It was ancient and intrepid and quiet. Even the building itself felt like a survivor.
I went to Shabbat services at the bright and modern Galicia Jewish Museum. I happened to be walking by and heard the music and it sounded great, with a Klezmer type of feel, so I went in. There was a large group of tourists there and it was a lively service. It definitely feels that there’s an effort to keep some Jewish soul of the place alive. I asked someone how many local Jews generally attended and he said about twenty. The entire Jewish population of Krakow now is around 500. Before the war it was 60,000.
I surprised myself by attending services, as I don’t usually go at home. A lot was surprising about the trip. It was meant to be a work trip- promotion for the Polish translation of my memoir- not some rootsy back-to-my-origins pilgrimage. Yet after services, I found myself saying to a guy from Hungary, “Something drew my back here.” I don’t know why I put it that way. It’s not as if I had ever been there before.
My trip to Auschwitz is another story and I need a moment to sit with it before I blog about it. It left me feeling like one of those cartoon characters that got an anvil dropped on its head. I’m still half-flattened. It’s going to take me a minute to rearrange myself and figure out how to put words to my experience.
Now Israel is bombing Gaza and my head is spinning with sadness about all of it, all of it. I’m grateful for my trip. And I can’t wait to get home.
Here I am getting ready to be interviewed on the Polish talk show Rosmovy W Toku (Talk is in Progress). I had hoped that they’d give me that dramatic eye makeup I’ve come to associate with Slavic femme fatales, but they did a disappointingly tasteful job.
Once I had the earpiece fitted so I could hear my interpreter, I walked out onto the set and was surprised to find that there was a studio audience. The host, Ewa Drzyzga, the “Polish Oprah,” had a warm, casual manner, dressed in jeans and sitting next to me on a couch. The lag that occurs with translation is interesting. It interrupts the usual rhythm of conversation and you’re forced to just sit there and pause as you try to stay poised and maintain eye contact, in front of four cameras and an unreadable audience. I made it through the interview and the producers seemed happy. It went by fast and almost seemed like some kind of David Lynchian dream. I kept the eye makeup for the rest of the day.
In the picture with me is me with my new buddy Teresa Fortis, a Swiss woman who wrote a book called Lockruf Saudia (originally in German, unfortunately not translated into English yet), about her years living in Saudi Arabia and working for Saudi Airlines in the 80s. Along with the segment producer who brought us over, we wound up having a couple of lovely dinners that lasted late into the evening, as if we’d known each other for years. Fast intimacies are one of my favorite things about international travel. Another favorite thing is, I believe, one of life’s great pleasures- a meal eaten alone in a foreign city.
At a café overlooking Market Square in Krakow, I ate (sorry, mom) the best potato pancakes I’ve ever had in my life, while the other patrons drank vodka and talked passionately- about what I have no idea. Because I don’t understand a word of Polish, the language was just music weaving through the air around me
In these moments, I achieve a deep kind of noticing, a sensation of settling into myself. They almost always happen when I’m traveling alone. I wonder if there’s somehow a way to bring experiences like this home. They don’t take long. They just take a genuine detachment from the to-do list. They take a certain internal silence. I have tried meditating a million different ways and never seem to stick to it, never seem to get the peace I’m looking for. Instead, I achieve it over a perfect potato pancake, looking out over the flower market’s wild splashes of color against the grey day, the people hurrying by in dark coats, leaning into the wind.
How’s this for surreal (Dali’s got nothin’ on me)…
Two weeks ago I was trick-or-treating on our tree-lined street in sunny Los Angeles (dressed like a cave family with a pet triceratops):
Today I was freezing my tush off at the haunting, beautiful memorial at Plac Bohhaterow Getta (Ghetto Heroes Square) in Krakow, the site where the Jews of the Krakow Ghetto were corralled before deportation to the concentration camps during the Second World War.
Krakow architects Piotr Lewicki and Kazimierz Latak created the memorial, comprised of 70 empty bronze chairs, representing the discarded possessions left behind after the liquidation of the ghetto.
I experience these things differently now, as a mother. I stood in the square and kept thinking of the mothers who hid their babies in their backpacks, in their suitcases. The mothers who were separated from their children. The mothers who stayed with their children and died with them. I could go on with the ghastly thoughts that nearly made me lose my borscht, but I won’t. I don’t think I need to- you parents out there are with me, I know you are. I said a prayer for the mothers who stood there before me under circumstances so horrific as to be unimaginable, and for the mothers in the world today still suffering similar atrocities. I went back to the hotel and wrote a letter to T. I do this sometimes, when I have something I really want to tell him that’s not developmentally appropriate. I keep the letters in a folder to give to him when the time seems right.
Tomorrow I’m taping an interview for a talk show called Rozmowy W Toku, talking about the Polish translation of my memoir. How amazing that I get to be here to experience this beautiful city that carries, among many other things, this terrible scar on the face of the world. How remarkable to stand and witness all the healing that’s grown up around it.
Stay tuned for more dispatches from Poland…
Kristen Howerton, Deborah Swisher and I got together with our clans one Sunday and made a little video about the #$%@ that gets said to us every day at the mall, the playground, heck, on our front yards! Being in a transracial family is a very visible way to walk through the world. I look at dumb remarks as a chance to advocate for adoption and to educate people who are usually well-intentioned, but insensitive. This video is in that same spirit. Plus, we had a blast making it. Hope you enjoy it. If you do, please circulate it!
I ache for the landscape of the Mojave desert, even when I’m standing in the middle of it. Whenever I’m here, there’s a constant hovering awareness that I’m going to have to leave and it seems to manifest as a free-floating sense of longing. I guess it’s the price I pay for having found a little corner of this planet where I can see myself living as an old woman, in some fantasy Georgia O’Keefe-esque existence.
We had six people out here in Joshua Tree for the weekend, all of us helping to shoot the video for Scott’s song “Pretty,” (yes, like my book) which he’ll be releasing soon. That’s a pic of DJ Mendel directing, Kaz Phillips-Safer shooting and Anais Bjork supplying the gorgeousness. T and I were production assistants: making coffee runs, doling out sunblock and, most importantly, digging for fossils. Because no video shoot is complete without a paleontologist on set.
Overall it was a fun adventure, but T was frankly a real pain all weekend. Change is hard for him and he gets tremendously anxious in unfamiliar environments. He refused to let daddy out of his sight for even a second, so we wound up just baking in the sun on set for hours instead of going to Pioneertown to see the cowboys. He also refused to go to sleep, which is annoying, but more importantly it makes me feel sad for him. He’s just a little boy; I want to world to be less scary. I want him to feel safer and not like he has to control everything. I also want to be two inches taller and speak fluent French, but that ain’t gonna make it true.
After we were done with the video, Scott took T home and left me alone up here for a couple of days to get some uninterrupted work done on my book proposal (I know- he’s pretty much awesome). It’s wildly gorgeous and the wind is rattling the windows. The stars are so low that I’m wearing them as barrettes. I’m eating cereal for dinner because I can. I love the freedom and solitude and yet I miss my little boy something fierce.
It occurred to me last night as I was sitting in the hot tub and watching the sun set over the desert, that if I could travel back in time twenty years and whisper in my teenage ear: You’re going to be an author and have a wonderful husband and a firebrand, amazing child and you’re going to get to travel a lot and one night you’re going to find yourself alone in a hot tub in the desert, looking up at a glowing pink sky, I would have thought, That’s a pretty f-ing cool life. But I forget about that and from the inside, it gets to just be a big anxiety stew, with scattered moments of gratitude and joy. From the inside, it always feels like aching for something even as I’m standing right in the middle of it. It’s important to have the moments when you say- this is all right. In fact, it’s all I ever wanted.
I wanted to post an update on the school saga, because many of you have been following our arduous pre-school journey and I don’t want to deprive you of the big payoff…
Two years, three schools and many tears later, Tariku is ROCKING pre-school, at long last. I’m speculating that a couple of factors are coming into play to make this attempt successful when the others have been disastrous. First, I think he wasn’t ready to be separated from us quite as early as most of his friends. He’s been a bit late developmentally with a lot of things and in spite of all the parenting methodologies we try, he’s just ready when he’s ready. For example, we stood on our heads with the potty training until I was convinced he was going to wind up wearing Depends, until one day he decided he was going in the potty because his friend Dashiell did. That was it. We’ve had maybe three accidents since.
Tariku is enormously social and is now able to understand that certain behaviors of his were making it hard for him to be around other kids for very long. His desire to have friends has been the best motivation for him to work on the hard stuff- impulse control and emotional regulation.
The other big factor is that we found the right school. In our case, finding the best fit for him meant me being willing to be wrong about my initial instincts. I generally gravitate toward the most unorthodox and progressive institutions, but it turns out that in T’s case, he functions much better in a more structured and traditional environment. He feels safer when he knows who is in charge and exactly what is going to happen. Too much self-direction makes him spin out. We found a structured school that is aware of his issues and is committed to working with him rather than jumping to kick him out for the slightest transgression.
It’s not like we’ve seen miracles, but we’ve seen great progress and healing. The smile on his face when we’re climbing the stairs to his classroom makes my whole day. I could cry when we walk in the door and the other kids shout his name and run up to him. My kid had friends! Friends he doesn’t bite! Lots of them!
Best of all, I’m no longer spending my whole morning sure that I’m about to receive a call to come pick him up. He’s settling in to this school thing and so am I. I’m not sure who’s more thrilled about it.
I don’t have time for a hobby, and I REALLY don’t have time for an obsession. Yet, obsessions happen.
I have always wanted to tango. I love tango music and I remember looking up classes in New York back in the early nineties. But it wasn’t until a few weeks ago that I actually tried it for the first time. On impulse, I texted my saucy tanguera friend Jamie Rose (author of the awesome book Shut up and Dance) and said: I want to dance. A mere few days later I was taking a private lesson at a dance studio in Koreatown (that’s a pic of me dancing with my teacher Moti Buchboot).
It felt like no less than a dream come true for a moment, to finally be dancing the elegant moves I’ve only ever attempted in my fantasies. For about fifteen minutes I was convinced I was a tango prodigy… then it got really hard. Since then it’s only gotten more challenging, more frustrating and paradoxically more satisfying.
Let me clarify that Scott is not my tango partner. I’m flying solo. He couldn’t be more supportive, but he’d rather stick pins under his eyelids than spend hours a week partner dancing. It’s not his thing. Let’s just say that Scott is to tango dancing as I am to Rush music. Still, he knows that if I’m doing something that makes me feel happy and sexy, it can only benefit him in the long run.
My neighbor Suzanne told me that I was demented, trying to make time for tango as a busy working mom. I don’t think it’s any more demented than, say, scrapbooking. It seems valid to prioritize being present in my body and dancing to music that resonates with my soul. If it means we go out to dinner yet another night a week because I don’t have time to cook, so be it. My kid barely eats my cooking anyway. If it means my house is a wreck, nothing new there.
I also think that it’s a fantastic spiritual exercise to be a beginner at anything. To learn to love yourself through the stage of really sucking at something new. And to do an activity that forces you to connect to yourself and to other humans on this planet.
In short, I’m hooked.
Here are my first pair of Comme Il Fauts- the Jimmy Choo of tango shoes. SO worth the shin splints. Tango!
Religion is the hardest thing for me to blog about. I can write about sex no problem. I revel in the cathartic aspect of admitting all manner of embarrassing mom foibles. And yet when it comes to religion, I feel out on a limb. It’s still something that’s unsettled in my life and I have the unusual (for me) desire to please everyone. I want my atheist friends to think I’m smart like them. I want my Jewish friends to bat Yiddish colloquialisms around with me. I want my Christian friends to know I’m down with Jesus. I could go on…
I grew up in a world in which religion was a simple thing. My family and everyone around us was steeped in the Jewish ethnicity- its foods and prayers and customs and expressions. Neither of my parents lived more than twenty minutes from where they grew up. Holidays were crowded with family and the house always smelled delicious.
And then I moved three thousand miles away and married a Christian guy. And even before that, I was a religious seeker, struggling to find a spiritual community that made sense to me. I’ve felt close a few times- a Zen dojo in New York, a hippie temple in San Francisco, a Pentecostal church in East L.A… but in the end something always stuck in my craw and I eventually drifted away.
This comes up for me now because I just sailed through the High Holidays yet again without formally acknowledging them in any way. I did have a quiet personal moment, but I didn’t share in any kind of community.
I think my craving for some structured spirituality would just stay an intermittent yearning in my life if it weren’t for the fact that Judaism was so important to me as a child. I wonder if I’m slighting my own kid by not giving him a religious community. I don’t have a good answer, but I’m conscious of the question and I’m open to a solution that makes sense for our family. T’s new school has an Episcopal affiliation and he’s been really enjoying chapel, so that’s going to have to be enough for now.
When I think of being in an interfaith marriage, I remember the time Scott and I visited our friend Yoshi in Kyoto (that’s the three of us pictured above). I was having trouble telling the Buddhist temples from the Shinto shrines. Yoshi told me that there was no reason to draw hard and fast lines between Buddhism and Shintoism, because most Japanese people practice some mix of the two, with a dose of ancestor worship mixed in.
I told him that it seems like cheating. Like you should have to choose. It’s like calling yourself Jewish and praying to Jesus when you feel like it. And then praying to your dead grandmother when you feel like it. You can’t cover all your bases. Those just aren’t the rules.
He just looked at me, confused, and asked, “You don’t pray to your dead grandmother when you feel like it?”
Yes. I actually do. All the time. Lord knows she was opinionated enough in her lifetime, maybe one day she’ll weigh in with a clear answer. Until then, I guess I’m going with the Japanese model.
Stevie Wonder is T’s newest obsession and this is his favorite song.
One of the great things about having kids is that you get to re-discover artists like Stevie Wonder. I got emotional hearing Scott tell T about Stevie Wonder’s disability- how it helped make him a great musician by forcing him to listen more closely to the world than most people do. T is talking about the senses in school this week, so it was a perfect teaching moment.
Added bonus: there are few cuter things than tiny boys with big afros jumping around singing, “BABY, everything is alright. Uptight! Outtasight!”
Here’s my newest Huffpo blog, but ya’ll get the exclusive pic to go with it. Yup, that’s her…
As a child, I was fixated on mirrors. Time and time again, my parents would catch me in some elaborate, solo musical production performed for an audience of one on the back of my bedroom door. Not only was mirror gazing a solitary indulgence, it was also a public compulsion. I remember being mocked by my Hebrew school classmates when they busted me transfixed by my own reflection in the long windows of the temple gift shop, like a Jewish mini-Narcissus.
Until recently, when confronted with memories of my embarrassing pastime, I’ve always reached the obvious conclusion: I was hopelessly vain. Worse yet, I was hardly physically exceptional enough to justify such fascination. So I wasn’t just vain, but delusional to boot.
But mirrors are more than just a place to check your makeup or your air guitar technique. In myths and fairytales, mirrors are often a mystical thing- half of this world and half of another. Mirrors play an integral role in Snow White, The Snow Queen, Beauty and the Beast, Through the Looking Glass and the myth of Narcissus, among others. Perseus kills Medusa by using a mirror. Mirrors can provide portents of future events, can hold malevolent spells, can even be a portal to other worlds.
Lately, I’ve begun to see my fascination with mirrors as the result of an impulse more fundamental than vanity. Mermaids traditionally carry mirrors as a symbol of their duality. As an adopted child, I, too, lived in the borderlands between two worlds. I didn’t grow up physically resembling my family and didn’t see much of a correspondence, physical or otherwise, between myself and the disturbingly homogenous population of the conservative town in which we lived. I secretly harbored suspicions that I had been dropped into northern New Jersey by sadistic aliens. Or perhaps I had been abandoned by a princess who couldn’t raise me because of an evil spell- the very sort of princess who might have a magic mirror.
We all live on a shifting frontier between truth and fiction. Memories are a collaboration between past and present. The events of our lives are shaped by the dreams, fantasies and beliefs that circle them and vice versa. For adopted children, this hazy boundary between life and narrative takes on an added dimension of urgency, because in some ways we are forced to self-invent from the gate. The inability to easily concretize an identity can lead to feeling disconnected. It can drive you to stare at your own face for too long- to wonder who exactly you are and where you came from. But it can also awaken the narrative possibilities within you. The loss created by adoption leaves a gap, a void. If you are a certain kind of person, you learn to fill that void with story.
My birth mother recently came to visit, graciously agreeing to participate in a series of oral histories I’m recording. I had met her briefly once before, but hadn’t seen her in nearly fifteen years. I picked her up curbside at the airport and as I hopped out of my car to hug her, the late afternoon sun glanced off her eyes and the resemblance struck me nearly breathless for a moment. Her eyes were the same shape and unusual muddy green color as my own. A bit lighter, maybe. A bit more careworn, certainly. But still, the similarity startled me. It occurred to me that this sense of recognition is what most people experience every day of their life. As a result, perhaps they don’t feel compelled to look quite as hard in the mirror.
This search for reflections in the world around us is an essential impulse. It’s an impulse that isn’t only answered by our families but by music, art, books, lovers, friends. And by stories.
In my adult life, I don’t look in the mirror as much as I used to. What the mirror never gave me, I found in narrative. My hunger for connection inspired me to tell stories. I am grateful for it every night as I lie down with my own son, who is also adopted, and spin him tales in which he is a warrior, a prince, a hero. For now, he can take any one of these reflections and choose for himself a truth. And one day I hope he will tell me a story about who he is, and it will be far better and truer than any story I could invent for him.
Scott and I had a date night last week and went to see Red at the Dorothy Chandler. The show was perfectly acted and beautifully designed and the writing was neat as a pin- there wasn’t a loose thread or a messy edge or a busted seam in sight. Plus, it was about Mark Rothko, whom I love. And somehow, I couldn’t have cared less about it. It didn’t get a hook in me anywhere. I didn’t feel a thing. It was a fun night out, but that was about it.
As we left the theater, there was free Japanese Ondo/Bon dancing in the courtyard, with a live band. Bon dancing happens in concentric circles and there was a dance floor especially laid out for it, like a little race track around the fountain. It’s a folk dance originally designed to welcome ancestral spirits, and it looks kind of like the electric slide, done with fans in a circle.
There were old women in kimonos and little girls in shorts and flip flops and people of all ages and races. Some knew what they were doing and some were clearly just walking by and grabbed a fan. I was riveted. So was Scott. Something about the diversity of the dancers and their general joy and lack of self-consciousness was truly moving. Of course I hopped in and got my Bon on for a minute- just try to stop me from dancing in the streets. We left totally exhilarated.
You’ll always get your theater eventually, if you keep looking.
Until now, I’ve been one of those grouchy East Coasters guilty of bemoaning the lack of seasons in Los Angeles. But it’s not true. One only needs to hunt for the perfect back-to-school lunchbox to feel the curtain closing on summer. Yet again, my child awakens me to the subtleties of the world around me. To the sweetness of the last figs off the tree, the delicious exhaustion of late beach afternoons, the sadness of the shortening days.
Yesterday, T started planning for our Christmas tree. He wants a big one this year. No, a big one. No, I mean a BIG one. I explained that we had to make it through fall first.
And in the grand tradition of fall….say a little prayer because we’re trying a new school. I don’t want to say too much about it until we have a toehold, but I’m hopeful that this one is going to work out. I’ve been hopeful before and I’ve been dead wrong, but I’ll persist in being hopeful because T is changing so much every day. He’s able to understand now why his friends are in school and he’s not. He’s working hard on his emotional regulation and his impulse control because he badly wants to be around other kids his age. We start next week. I’ll have the updates from the trenches.
Also- holy shit….baseball season. I’m a mom in the bleachers at baseball practice. Do you ever have moments when it washes over you? This isn’t a dollhouse you’re living in; this isn’t a script you’re writing; this isn’t a game- you are someone’s MOTHER. Baseball practice does that to me. Suck it up and make some snacks, cause you’re deep in it now, mom.
And how did I, who only ever attended pep-rallies for the sake of irony, wind up with the kid with the most team spirit ever? He smiles when he runs laps. He cheers when his teammates hit the ball. He cheers when they strike out. He cheers when they’re warming up. He cheers when they catch the ball. He cheers when they drop it. He makes me proud with that enormous heart of his. Every minute of every day.