The Kids and I

Lately I have been feeling a certain way about how comprehensively my kids have taken over my life. Nothing has come to symbolized this as how many times I have to reheat my cup of tea, sometimes even before my first sip. Pour the water…“Daddy.” Add the honey… “Daddy?” Lift the cup to my lips…”Daddy!” Sometimes I just want to be like “WHAT!!??” But I take a deep breath, put the cup down and tend to their needs. When I return, my hot tea is iced. I hate ice tea!

This afternoon, the baby gets her lunch. Then she is off to nap with mommy. Sundays are homework days for the boy. He gets help with ellipsis, (his “word of the week”). And some addition and subtraction. Too easy for him. Before he runs back to his computer games, I find him more exercises to do. He breezes through them well. I don’t like him on the screen that much, but I don’t want to be unnecessarily mean. I let him return to his games.

The oldest wants to be a chef. Today she wants to treat us to some cookies. When the cookies come out a little too hard and little too burnt, I explain the science behind rack position and heat in the oven. She is disappointed, and wants another crack at it. I remind her it’s not going to be perfect every time; sometime you have to make do with what you’ve got. Now time for some math; some more exercises on the fractions she struggles with at school and with the cookie recipe earlier.
I manage to stuff some bread and avocado into my mouth. When I am done with my lunch, she is done with her work…with few misunderstandings. I explain her mistakes to her and ask her to redo the two last questions by herself. I don’t let them get away with just “yeah” when I ask “Do you understand?” I always make them prove it by solving a similar problem or two.

While she works on figuring out how close 1 2/4 is to 2, I take my laptop, a pen, a draft of a short story I am currently working on, a DVD of the recent “Men in Black” installment and start for the family room in the basement looking forward to some me time.

One step down the stairs, the boy calls me, “Daddy come let me show you something.” But before “something” the computer stalls, need Shockwave player. I cannot install from his account. So I log off and back in as an administrator. There I was—standing with all my “me time” play things in one hand, clicking through the installation with the other, thinking by the time this is done, the youngest will be up and that’s it, me time done!

I install Shockwave, log out of the admin account, back to his account and help him locate the football game once more. He clicks play and waits anxiously for the download to complete. After the game loads and the field appears, his face lights up, “Thank you! This never worked for me before. Thank you, Dad!” he says one more time, grabs my arm and kisses it.

Me time? They are my me time. They give my life creases, give it hidden corners full of pleasant surprises. Sometimes in the thick of it, you forget the joy you get from their laughter; all you can think about is your aching muscles. But….My kids give the best hugs! After a long day at work, when I walk into the house to their screams of “hi daddy!”, my two year old wrapping herself around my legs before I reach down to pick her up in a hug….long day? What long day? These days are short and go by quickly. My oldest just attended her sixth grade dance. Soon it’d be prom, soon it’d be college, soon they’d be gone. And it would be a lonely flight down the stairs with a cup of tea that would have long lost its honey.

Written by IBé in: About Me | Tags:

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