Feeler

Last night was a challenging night to put it mildly. Big feelings and not enough sleep combined to make the atmosphere electric. So today when someone made small talk with me by asking how my kids are doing, I barely mustered a deflated “well, Poppy is three years old and she’s very very three right now.”  

I don’t do small talk well. I know the appropriate response is “they’re doing great, thanks for asking!” but I as it turns out, I am not appropriate. If you ask me how I am, I’m not going to say, “I’m fine, how are you?” I’m going to say, “I’m super jazzed because I saw a beautiful heron on my drive in this morning,” or “I’m feeling kind of down because I’ve lost touch with friends I thought would be my forever people,” or “I’m pissed because my favourite radio station fired my favourite hosts and now I have to boycott the station that plays the best music,” or “I’m scared that I’m not doing enough. Every day. Am I wasting my time?” I am a feeler - and sharer - of the feelings. (I literally felt all those things this morning in the span of about 30 minutes. Feeling feelings is my super power but damn, it is exhausting.)

Yesterday I was driving Poppy to daycare when I heard her start to sob. I asked her what was wrong (we’d just been saying good morning to the buses and everything was fine) and she told me she was sad because of something that had happened a week ago. In the moment it wasn’t significant, her little buddy had accidentally bonked her with his toy and it startled her. But a week later, she needed to talk about it and have a little cry to process her feelings. I have never felt closer or more similar to my daughter (or more sympathetic to my husband for that matter) than in that moment. 

Enjoy These Moments

It is 10pm on a school night and both of my kids are currently awake and crying because they’re “not tired” and “it’s still light outside” and I would like to bottle this feeling up so whenever someone tells me to “enjoy these moments, they go by so quickly” instead of awkwardly acquiescing, I can use it to instantly summon my rage and shut that shit down.

I love my kids with every fibre of my being but I need them to stop making noises at me and go to sleep. Hashtag: too blessed to be stressed *cry face emoji* (help)

 

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Smile

Poppy tripped and fell teeth-first into a wooden coffee table on Easter weekend. It was pretty terrible. Tears, blood, swelling, but thankfully her teeth remained intact (ish) (baby gal already had some chips from a couple bathtub incidents). We were lucky and the table absorbed a lot of the impact. 

We saw a doctor and her regular dentist after it happened, and both recommended that we see a pediatric dental specialist to rule out any damage above the gum line. I was skeptical. Poppy’s seen her dentist since before she turned one (my babies got their first teeth early) but she has yet to have an actual exam. We go and talk to the dentist, we sit in the chair, we hold some of the tools, we refuse to open our mouth, and then we get to choose a prize from the treasure chest. I don’t remember the process being as agonizing with Grady, but I can’t argue with the results. Grady is a kid who is completely comfortable in the dentist chair and I’m fairly certain it’s being we invested so much time in making the dentist a fun and relaxing place to be. 

The specialist called last week to confirm Poppy’s appointment and I voiced my concern. I wanted to give them a heads up that we would be following Poppy’s lead and I wouldn’t force her to endure an exam if she wasn’t willing. If I was concerned about anything specific, it would be a different story, but she seems to have healed well and her teeth are not wiggly, out of place, or discoloured. I didn’t consider this appointment the same as when Grady needed stitches or Poppy needed an Epi-Pen administered; in those cases I absolutely held my babies down as they fought for freedom. It had to be done. But this didn’t feel like that so I informed the specialist.   

They were receptive to what I was saying, but reassured me that their office is set up to cater to kids, they deal with kids all day long, they’re pros, they have their tricks and hacks to get kids excited and cooperative, etc. And the whole time I was very Jennifer-Lawrence-OK-gif but what else could I do but try to prepare them the best I could and then sit back and let them work?

Our appointment was today. Poppy was impressed with the office (there was a kid-sized pirate ship in the waiting room!)  but when it came to the actual exam, she wasn’t having it. The staff was amazing, and they tried so hard to make her comfortable, but in the end we didn’t get much done. The dentist did end up getting a look at her teeth but the dentist also got her finger bitten when she didn’t stop when Poppy told her to stop. I would have loved to be proven wrong, and walk out with a set of X-rays and a detailed exam, but in the end all I had was the knowledge that I know my kid really well. 

Moon Magic

I like to mark the full moon by reflecting on the previous weeks and setting intentions for the coming weeks. I know it’s typically more of a new moon activity but I’m a visual beast and I connect better with the full moon. 

This morning I was in a bit of a tizz as I packed school bags and lunches and got kids in their shoes and car seats etc. At one point Poppy grabbed my face and yelled, “HILLARY, DON’T BE MAD.”  And I wasn’t mad, I was just stressed out and trying to do 87 things in four minutes, but it’s stuck with me all day. Partly because it’s hilarious but also because it’s made me realize how wound up I get when I think I’m going to be late or when my brain is going in too many directions. 

I’m not going to set a bunch of intentions or goals tonight. I’m going to set one: slow down. Slow down with the kids, with Shawn, with myself. Take a breath. Do one thing at a time. Give people my full attention. Sit down when I eat instead of shovelling food into my mouth while I help kids get dressed and sign permissions slips. Slow down my speech, think about what I want to say, say it kindly. Be with the people I’m with. 

What’s your full moon magic?