Monday, April 11, 2011
For Posterity's Sake: Week in Review 116
Last week, Audrey donned her safety goggles before heading out the door to draw pictures with chalk. Safety first. She never told me why she felt she needed the goggles, but I suppose we each prepare in our own ways. This morning, I prepared for the day by retrieving the calendar from a desk drawer to double-check our schedule. What happened next was atypical at best. I began counting days - the number we have left until our due date, to be precise. I don't know what got into me. I won't post the number here. Denial is a procrastinator's best friend. A more practical person might have marched herself straight to the garage to clean out the car and see if that third car seat will indeed fit across the back row (okay, a more practical person would have probably done that months ago). I loaded the kids up and went to the gym, instead. Like I said, we all prepare in our own ways. I do have a mental running list of tasks to accomplish this week - preparations for the events to come. But, what I've found is this: no matter how much we prepare, each of us comes into being and learns to be in his or her own perfect time.
Our cases in point, from the week past:
(I apologize in advance for including this first story. All I can say in defense of myself is that it made me laugh). On Monday, the kids and I were gathered inside and just outside of my bathroom in varying states of readiness. Audrey had popped into the water closet and shut the door. A few minutes later, I hear, "Eww, I smell poop!" As the mom of two little ones and a dog, my first thought was, great, where? As if reading my mind, she responded, "From me, going in the potty." I breathed a sigh of relief. Nathan, playing right outside the bathroom with his sister's dollhouse (a gift from her Grammy, complete with buttons that make noises like a doorbell, washing machine, and toilet) had other ideas in mind. He followed her comment with a toilet flush as if indicating that, perhaps, a courtesy flush were in order to protect the noses of the rest of us.
Tuesday, Audrey was continuing work on an elephant picture she'd been drawing for a couple days. Its details were extensive: a spray of water coming out of the elephant's trunk, a source of water from which the elephant had drawn the water being sprayed, grass, and clouds. She added some worms, rain, a butterfly, and a baby elephant. Then, she pointed to a small pink outline drawn in the grass, "and here is a dead foot. Are you surprised?"
"Where is the rest of the body?" I asked.
"God already took it up." (Naturally).
Wednesday morning, Audrey asked for toast. The toaster's lever sprang up with a bing. "It hatched!" she said.
That afternoon during lunch, Nathan kept trying to pull his bib off. Unable to master the task, he began laughing at himself and his failed efforts. I just love a baby who has mastered self-deprecating humor.
Preschool mornings are always a bit rushed at our house. The kids wake up wanting to play with one another rather than get dressed. Audrey wants to talk or work on projects rather than eat. Thursday was no exception. In a feeble attempt to get Audrey, who was more interested in telling me a story, to eat breakfast, I said, "I'm not talking to you anymore until you're finished eating and we're in the car."
"Okay. I still love you, though."
Thursday evening, Jason was getting Nathan ready for bed. I told Audrey where to find a diaper and pajamas and asked her to take them upstairs to her dad. "Thank you, big girl helper," I said.
"Thank you, big mama helper for trying to tell me what to do."
Friday morning, Audrey asked if she could help get Nate ready. I told her she could try to take his pajamas off of him. She began with the shirt. She kept pushing his sleeves up toward his elbows rather than pulling them down and off. Realizing her tactic wasn't working, she stopped to regroup. She paused for a minute, in thought. Then, she began pulling at her own shirt as she would to take it off, realized her mistake and used her newly-gained knowledge to get her brother's shirt off.
A few minutes later, she told me she wanted two Audreys. She's mentioned wanting a sister several times since discovering she's having another brother. I assumed this was another attempt at telling me how much she wished for a sister. "Do you want a sister or another Audrey?"
"Would she be a baby or be four."
"Four." Upon further questioning, I discovered that she would also look and act just like Audrey. This could be one interesting play date.
Nathan had a new skill of his own to show off Friday evening. As it turns out, he can now blow his nose, which he demonstrated by pulling out and blowing his nose into each bib in the kitchen bib drawer.
Oh yes, each little one comes into his own or learns to be in her own good time. And no amount of time, no matter how well-prepared she might think (or hope) she is, is enough to prepare a mama to watch it all unfold before her, which might just be one of adulthood's great gifts. That, and a self-cleaning car. Where do I get my hands on one of those?