Monday, September 17, 2012

Parental Empowerment

Often during my childhood, my mom was the one on parental duty from dawn until dusk.  I'm not sure what Grammy put in her coffee back in those days, but I remember her being ever patient and in control of us four "ducklings" (as a shoe store lady once called us as we trailed behind her obediently; J and I were much too old to overhear that and were immediately disgusted with ourselves).  This parenting solo thing that my mom did so well was one of my biggest fears about becoming a parent myself.  Confident co-parent?  Yes, indeedy!  Primary caregiver?  No problem.  But give the kids dinner and herd the tired and cranky rabble to bed all by myself?!  Can I pass?  Call my lifeline?  Even with just the Nugget, it always felt daunting.  But little by little, I'd manage.  Hubby would have a rare night out, a business trip, a work dinner.  Sometimes I'd call in reinforcements, other times I'd try to tough it out.  It was/is never easy, but always empowering to know you can indeed the reins all day and everyone will survive.  (My hat is ever off to military spouses who do this for months, years at a time.)  This week, our second Ergo arrived courtesy of eBay, and while Hubby hosted a work dinner, I strapped both those tired wailings babes to my body, and we kept calm and carried on.  We took advantage of the cool evening to sit outside on the front stoop for a Nugget's bedtime story.

The view from above when I rock the double Ergo.  I admit, it makes me feel like a warrior mama!
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Spork is in the phase where he speaks and enunciates confidently....just not exactly in English.  The Nugget calls it speaking Sporkish or Sporkese.  We are very slow studies in Sporkish, but here's what we've gleaned so far.

Sporkish to English
Ort!....Look at this!
Baba....Dog (interestingly he used to say doggie, I think he is trying to pronounce her name now)
Meh-Meh....Milk

Spork is a quick study, he wants to be able to imitate us exactly.  He seriously presses buttons on the toy microwave, babbles out loud when he flips through a book on his own, flings the Nugget's swim bag over his shoulder.
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I've just come to terms with Tater being able to crawl, and now she's pulling up to stand.  Today she let go my arm for a millisecond before she toppled.  


To quote Ferris Bueller, "Life moves pretty fast.  If you don't stop and look around once in awhile, you could miss it."  I guess that's why I'm letting the dishes fester in the sink to type this; it's my way of slowing down, pausing and rewinding the little moments so I can savor them again, because I may have had to gulp them down in real time so I could save a baby's fingers from the sit-n-spin.
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And this one....his smile, his door-holding skills, his ability to comfort a crying sibling and wrap his long skinny arms tight around me for a hug....he is a laugh come to life (except in the early mornings before school, when he's more like a grizzly awakened from hibernation).  Some gems from the Nugget this week.

(Opening and closing his sandwich bun)
"Look, I am some talking bread.  Hello."
(I may be at fault for this, but I am happy to take the credit for this sort of weirdness.)

"When Ms. K told a joke, all the friends started chuckling, then giggling, then we were laughing out loud!"

(Daddy stood behind the Nugget and applied sunscreen)
"Wow, Daddy, that's advanced."

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