Today you are six

My Maxy-Moose, today you are six.

You false-started into the world a few days before 11/18/2008, sending me to Labor and Delivery not once but twice.  On the 17th, I dropped your brother off at Grammy and Papa’s and had a light dinner and chatted through contractions that felt like they were starting to mean business. They kicked into gear as the sun went down, and I labored alone on the green couch, clutching your daddy’s iPod and timing contractions with an app that felt very futuristic.

In the middle of the night, they were three minutes apart and I woke up your dad and he drove me to the hospital. It only took a few hours for you to arrive. I remember resting on my left side and clutching the rail tightly and knowing exactly when it was time to roll onto my back and push. Your dad helped catch you, and it was peaceful even though it hurt. I reached for you and held you and nuzzled your sticky face while you nursed. You were always an easy nursling, even from that first moment we met.

Baby boy, you’ve always been my cuddle bug. You still purse your lips and “sucky face” when you’re sleepy and cuddling. You still carry around the blankies that I used as rags when I nursed you.

You make adorable noises when you’re making believe. You talk to yourself. You talk to everyone. You talk all the time. But you’re shy when you realize people are watching. My birthday wish for you, joyous little boy, is that you move through life without the brakes of self-consciousness. Don’t be shy, precious boy.

And always let me give you kisses.

And never cut your hair.

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On failure

I didn’t write last night because I sat down with my kids and watched Willow and folded so much laundry it no-shit took me the entire movie to finish. And I didn’t even have time to put it away. When I went to bed at the same time the kids did, I thought, “I didn’t post today. I failed.”

Then I thought about how absolutely bullshitty it is to place that much weight on an arbitrary challenge. I’ve blogged more this month than I have in two years, so it’s a success. I spend loads of time writing for others’ gain and very little time writing for the simple joy of expressing myself. This challenge has been challenging, and it’s been very good to have that extra boost that makes me write even when I don’t feel like it. But I’m not going to beat myself up — as strong as that instinct is — just because I wasn’t 100% consistent.

When I sit down and force myself to put words on the page, they’re not always pretty words. But it’s a satisfying feeling, like nailing a particularly stubborn blackhead or riding a bicycle that had gathered dust for too long. I can still do this. And maybe if I do it enough I’ll form a habit and maybe if I form a habit I’ll get back to my fiction and finish my novel and write more novels or short stories or anything that’s for me.

This is going to be a hard week. I might write or I might not, but my mind will be whirring one way or another.

(I HATE PACKING.)

(But I like unpacking?)

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A towel with sleeves

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My soon-to-be 6-year-old hates getting out of the tub because he doesn't like to be cold. I dry him as fast as I can, but he still freaks out. The other day he saw a Critter book with Critter in a robe. "HE HAS A TOWEL WITH SLEEVES!" Ever since then, … [Continue reading]

Second son

zelda

It took me a while to catch on the fact that Moose is pretty smart. Growing up alongside a brother who began talking at 10 months old and mastered full, adult-like sentences before 2 means being plain old smart doesn't get noticed. I felt like a dick … [Continue reading]

Princess hair

hair

I'm pretty vain about my hair. After cutting it very very short about three and a half (?) years ago, I've been growing it out. At first, it was because my then-husband said he didn't like it. I immediately decided to grow it out, hoping that would … [Continue reading]

Nails

I've been growing my nails out since August of 2013. That's also when I quit coffee and started working out, and I keep swearing it was just a few months ago. But it's well over a year ago now. Working out hasn't been as consistent as I'd like. I'm … [Continue reading]