"Our life is frittered away by detail...simplify, simplify." - Henry David Thoreau

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Monday, September 27, 2010

Still at their beck and call

When the boys were little I was literally at their beck and call. For years I never seemed to be able to enter REM sleep because their was always a diaper to change or worse, an entire sleeper to be peeled off a cranky baby or a bucket needed beside a nauseous toddler or wet sheets to be changed. During the day it was constant diaper changes, non stop nursing, meal prep and clean up. One day morphed into the next until slowly we came out the other end of babydom and entered preschool world. Now I had a few hours with everyone off at school, time flew by in a haze of errands run without a stroller and quick uninterrupted conversations with friends. The nights were less hectic, I found myself waking up in the morning thinking that something must be wrong, no one had called out for me.

And so now we have moved all too quickly out of those early school years into the era of pre-teen angst and a whole new round of becking and calling. I have more time without them but now it's not as easy to make plans with friends because inevitably someone will need to be taken to the arena or picked up from dry land training or so-and-so wants to sleep over and can we go rent a movie or go to the theatre to meet the gang? It is never ending. I used to call the lists and schedules I left for whichever set of grandparent was babysitting for a few days "The Care & Feeding of the Brothers Grimm" but now it's less care and feeding and more "Chauffeuring and Digital Monitoring"

There's homework and the dreaded school projects. There's hockey practise and football tryouts. And now there's facebook and MSN monitoring. Our eldest doesn't have a cell phone yet and isn't really lobbying for one (although Number Two Son is) but I am starting to think it might not be a bad idea so I don't have to turn up at the arena only to be told he's going home with so-and-so or arriving at school to find no one there because they have all made plans and I'm not in them.

I'm not complaining, I just don't do change very well. Every transition I find myself clinging to the old days of making meals with one in the high chair, one on the floor with all the tupperware out of the cupboard and one playing with Play Doh on the counter. Now it's rushing to get a meal on the table before practise, watching which website they are surfing out of the corner of one eye while I squint with the other to read another permission form for yet another sporting activity. Change is good, change is inevitable but I still don't have to like it.

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