Sunday, September 14, 2008

Do Not Feel Sympathy For My Children

By all accounts, this has been what officials would term a "rough week." It all started a week from this past Friday with the beginning of my semester, which means I'm back on the working schlub/dad/husband/student schedule which, if you're not familiar, is a rather tight one. Sitting in class last Friday and Saturday, my brain felt as if its little brain-legs were mired in swamp water, making it impossible for them to run fast enough to keep up with the pace of the information zinging past. Consider me mentally gut-checked.

Monday, the boys attended their first day of actual day care, actual in this case referring to an entity outside of familial relations. See, when The Ash went back to work a few months ago, we placed the little fellows in the care of their grandparents. T'was an arrangement that seemed agreeable to all of us at the time, but alas, we finally reached the point where we had to concede that it simply wasn't working out for any of the parties involved. So we found a nice little place whose philosophies we agree with, whose facilities seem conducive to learning, and whose tuition will not require me to deliver pizza in the evenings or sell drugs on the weekends. As nice as the place seems to us, it must appear as the Gates of Hell through the eyes of my eldest son, for he has resisted going there with every ounce of resistant strength he could muster. Which of course makes our mornings that much more awesome. He's denied, he's debated, he's even attempted escape on foot.

Now I know, I know, it sucks to be two years old and tossed into daycare. But what I need to ask from you now, good people, is that you take all of that sympathy that you might be feeling for my children and direct it towards me. And maybe some for my wife too. For you see, my kids get plenty of sympathy and loving nourishment from the many people in their lives. And it's not as if they read the nice comments and emails that you leave on this blog. In fact, I'll let you in on a secret: I haven't even told them I have a blog. I'm still trying to figure out how I'll drop that bit of knowledge on their fuzzy little heads. So yeah, your sympathy would be much better spent on me than on the younguns. You understand.

Where was I? Oh right, the daycare defense mechanisms. Yeah, when denial, debate, and escape failed to achieve the desired effect, Henry went all Potter on me by summoning his toddler magic to make himself sick. "Sorry pops, I'm sick...can't go to daycare today. Too bad." I knew there were some my-kid-is-sick days to be had in my future, but I didn't think they'd come in the first week.

As it turned out, both boys were sick as little dogs, which meant they got to stay home Thursday and Friday. Devious move, little Holmes.

Oh yeah, and my Mom stayed in Houston to greet Ike. I asked her to come stay with us, but she opted to sandbag her house and put her furniture up on blocks. It's impossible to get old people to do anything. She's allright and her house is still standing. I guess maybe you can send some sympathy her way too.

Today, I went to one of my favorite coffee shops to bang out some homework, and I ended up doing all kinds of eavesdropping on the table next to me. In my defense, these two women were talking rather loud. I would've had to put on headphones to drown them out, but then I wouldn't have been able to listen to their conversation. They were both lamenting the difficulties that they've been having with their teenage sons. One of them is apparently mother to some kind of musical genius, and the other day he came home and announced that he's going to become a shaman. "Like a medicine man?" asked the other bewildered mother. There was little elaboration on how he intends to go about achieving this goal, but it sounded like a serious concern. I started to laugh, but then I remembered that teenage boys are in my future as well. How would I react to a shaman son? Would I too cry about it at the corner coffee shop? Hard to say at this point.

The boys are both feeling better, so tomorrow it's back to day care. But don't feel too bad for the little buggers. They're gonna be just fine.


Julie said...

Here's your sympathy. But more importantly, I want to throw some admiration and words of encouragement your way. I can only imagine how difficult it is to be having to make your child do something they hate with such intensity. It would probably be sooo much easier to give up. But you guys are sticking with it, and that's what being a parent is all about. Sometimes we really do know what's best for the little munchkins.
I bet that in a few weeks, Henry will totally be digging on day care. I'll send thoughts of sanity your way until that day arrives!

Whit said...

A Shaman? That's awesome!