Are You Kidding Me?!

Are You Kidding Me?!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Beep! Beep! Bedtime.

Conversations with my 7-year-old.

My little one is getting ready for bed. We take his pajamas, throw them in the hamper, and get new ones out. They have race cars all over them. Of course they do because, if you’re shopping for a little boy it’s always cars, trucks, sports, or dinosaurs—none of which my 7-year-old likes.

“Ugh! Those are ugly! I can’t stand race cars!”
Just an FYI...these are NOT my son's jammies.
I wouldn't do that to him.

“Um…they’re pajamas. No one will see them.”

“I’LL see them! They’re awful!”

“Are they comfortable?”

He looks down and doesn’t answer. I think he might actually cry. Ah…to be seven again.

I’ve never liked the car, truck, dino thing either, really. And I’ve never made this poor kid leave the house in a shirt with a race car or t-rex on it. But these are pajamas. 

I honestly don’t know what to say so I try to make light of the situation and poke him in the tummy saying, “Beep”.

He looks up at me and says, “Oh, nice. Thank you so much for rubbing salt in the wound.”

I am ashamed.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Gimme a Break

So the kids are home for February break. "Winter Break."

Déjà vu. (Literarally: having the strong sensation that an event or experience currently being experienced has been experienced in the past.) Thanks, wikipedia, you always come through for me in a big way.

Anyway, not that I don't just adore having the kids running around "playing" (stomping and shouting and bumping into things and crying) but didn't they just have a break? Like a few weeks ago? For the winter holidays? Another "Winter Break"? I believe they're getting a "Spring Break" soon, too. Give me a break.

Everyone is complaining about the snow. OH! The dreaded snow! Too much snow! Too many snow days! My kids will be going to school until July!

Here's a thought...get rid of the superfluous February break and they can have as many snow days as they need without extending the school year too far. I'm sure this has already been suggested somewhere by someone but I haven't heard it. And if it was, why didn't the schools do away with this ridiculous vacation?

Whatever. The kids are home. Again. Yay.

Monday, February 10, 2014


As I mentioned in this previous blog post, my 7-year-old son loves dancing. I thought it would be much more accepted now than it actually is. People like to pretend that it is. Dance academies like to advertise that it is. But, it’s not. Not by parents, peers, or dance schools—at least not the ones I’ve dealt with.

I don’t want him to lose this love. I don’t want him to question whether he should be doing this. For one thing, he is damn good at it. For another, he enjoys it. I want both my kids to feel comfortable and self-confident. I want them to feel "safe" doing whatever it is that makes them happy.

Just for fun, I like to show him cool actors and famous people (boys) who can dance. This is one of his favorites. And mine, too. Silly? Yes. Scrubs is a comedy. But that guy has had some serious training.

Incidentally, this video has helped my 9-year-old soccer, basketball, baseball, football fan to think dancing is cool.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

A letter to a friend (or Choosing your path)

There comes a time in everyone’s life when they must take their past and put it there—

in the past. 

Easier said than done, sometimes. Your past experiences shape you. But the fact remains that those who have been mistreated must decide, at a certain point, who it is they want to be. And if that person who they want to be is important enough to them, they will fight to become that someone. Someone they can be proud of. 

I was writing a letter to a friend of mine, as a simple, kind gesture, and it turned into this. A message to all the survivors out there who have lived a difficult life, made mistakes, acted on bad decisions, and let the weight of their past pull them under until they either hit bottom and bruised themselves or someone reached in and pulled them out.

Those of you who stand tall and strong although you still struggle, you are heroes. If you have chosen the more difficult path of self-love, generosity, kindness, and empathy, you are a champion. 

The great thing about this is that you can decide at sixteen or sixty and you have still won. If you falter, you stand up straight again. There is a chance no one noticed. There is a chance no one cares. Because you continue to respect yourself and those around you. Because these people know it is so much easier to walk the other path but that you have chosen this arduous one.   

So, to my friend who this letter was for, and to all my other friends and family who have chosen to become someone they are proud to be, I would like to take this opportunity, as small as it may be, to use a tiny virtual corner of the world to honor you. 

You are extraordinary.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Invisibility Cloak

What a spectacular high it is to be appreciated and thanked for doing your job. There’s employee of the week, employee of the month, and employee of the year. You get respect, raises, and recognition.

Isn’t that splendid?

Let’s compare that to say, oh I don’t know, being a mom. Go ahead. Guffaw. You know where I’m going with this. I have two children—good kids with nice manners. They have been brought up in a home where they have learned that they are lucky. Consequently, they are thoughtful and generous individuals. They gladly give up gaming time to help package up hats and scarves for our local homeless shelter. They spend time shopping for groceries to give to local food pantries. They donate their books and toys to kids at safe houses. They say please and thank you.

And yet.

Here I am. Standing in the hallway as my two lovely little children blow by me in a whirlwind of energy to get to the table. The one full of food that I set out for them. Or ignore me as they retreat to the basement to play their new Wii game. The one that I bought them. Or don’t look up from their book as I walk out of my room in the morning, heading into the kitchen to make their breakfast. Not so much as a “good morning” never mind a “thank you so much for making my breakfast”.

There is something quite special about being invisible. I always wanted a super power when I was little. I thought it would be so cool. I thought about which one I would choose and, though it was a tough decision, I usually wound up picking flying or being invisible. I haven’t been able to get those childhood wings to work yet but, man, I sure did get the invisibility that I wanted so badly.

Be careful what you wish for.