I’m afraid that I’ve given an inaccurate portrayal of our household life. Because I’ve chosen to write about all the escapades and explosions (loud bangs, smashed fingers, and wagon-smashed cars make the best stories, you know), you probably think that our house, or the people in it, are in constant motion.
But that's not true. We do have quiet times, and not just during the (blessed and gloriously beautiful) quiet time that is imposed every day after lunch by a weary mama. Believe it or not, the kids sometimes lapse into moments of silence all of their own volition.
No, really! They do!
Once upon a dark morning, the girls curled up in the downstairs study to read and listen to books on tape. They requested toast with jelly, and I, in hopes that the moment would stretch, obliged. It was nice. An all-too-infrequent moment of sisterly comradery.
See, there I go, tainting a pretty picture with my negative comment. Why couldn’t I have left well enough alone? If I had, then you would’ve believed that my girls are the best of friends, amen. Truth telling is such a wet rag.
Let’s pretend I never said anything. Just enjoy the sweet silence with me. Ahhh.
Sweetsie is getting hooked on books on tapes. Right now she’s immersed in Hank the Cowdog. She curls up on a bed, on a chair, on the floor, cranks up the tape player to ear-splitting decibels and lollygags for hours.
Even with the door shut, the roar of the tape is enough to give me a headache. To make matters worse, the player goes kind of slow, dragging the story out in a warbly, sick-o sort of way. And with every revolution of the turny thing, it squeaks. Sqeeeeeak. Squeeeeak. Squeeeeak.
Did I just crash the peaceful party again? Did I?
Soon after I took that picture I went into her room to move the floor mattress (Sweetsie’s bed) to our room. My grandparents were coming for a visit and would be staying in her room. I did not want them tripping over the mattress in the dead of night and breaking a hip.
As soon as I sashayed into the room (advance warning was given but warnings hold no merit when it comes to my youngest daughter and her moods) and laid hands on the mattress, Sweetsie promptly commenced to wailing, shrieking, sobbing, screaming, etc. She flopped around on the floor, executing theatrics that would make your blood run cold (or hot, if you’re the mama). After twenty minutes (I removed the tape player so we didn’t have two noise machines going at the same time), she suddenly stood up, sniffed, and started to help make the bed.
And here is the Baby Nickel, napping.
He doesn’t usually sleep during rest time, but every once in a great while, the sandman triumphs. When the sandman triumphs, it is a complete and total victory—it is nearly impossible to wake the kiddo up.
I give him about an hour to sleep and then I start in motion a long string of actions intended to raise him up. I open the door. We yell. Yo-Yo plays the piano.
None of it works. He will not wake up until he is ready. It’s as simple as that.
When this happened last week, I decided to take advantage of his rare tranquility. I sat by his head and snapped pictures. I focused on his eyes, his hair, his shirt sleeve. The camera was practically in his ear, but even so, it took a good fifty shutter schlicks before he stirred. He stretched. He puckered his lips.
He rolled over.
And then he smiled.
And then he fell back asleep.
And we did it all over again.
So see, my life isn’t all chaos and craziness.
It’s just mostly all chaos and craziness.
Most of the time, sights such as these assail my sensitive senses.
But would I be able to fully appreciate the quiet moments without the occasional catsuit-clad and red shoe-and-helmet sportin' young'un?
Um....yes, I actually think I could.
But that is, apparently, beside the point.
Endeavoring to be more appreciative,
The Mother of all (my) Crazies
This same time, years previous: classic cheesecake, love, the Tooth Fairy