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To Enable or Not To Enable...
Mar 11 2011 12:47PM

Ok, so my kid is forgetful. VERY forgetful and while it frustrates the heck out of my husband, I take it easier on him b/c he is EXACTLY like me.

I am extreeeeeemely forgetful and always has been... Sure, I've learned to cope with it and learn strategies to become LESS absent-minded, but I'm an adult... Aidan is just a kid.

So last night, we're cuddled up in bed (Eric has been working nights so I let Aidan sleep in my bed when he does b/c 1. I get nervous when he's not in the apt...
2. Aidan still wants to sleep in mommy's bed from time to time and I KNOW that's not going to last much longer.

It's about 10pm and we finished our long talk about school, and his crush, and his philosophies about how playing Call of Duty will help him become a Marine one day...

I mention taking him to the library the next day to get him some new books to read (we make him read 45 minutes every night - wknds included)

when ALL OF A SUDDEN he gasps, sits straight up and says:

"OH NO... I forgot, I have to bring in a book to school tomorrow about a State."

Immediately I find myself feeling the fury and flashbacks of the last time this happen came into view... Trekking all the way to the Brooklyn Central Public Library on Sunday, January 2nd b/c Aidan forgot to tell me ALL THROUGHOUT CHRISTMAS BREAK that he was supposed to bring a biography book to school upon return. The reason for the trek was:
a. The Brooklyn Central Library is one of the ONLY Brooklyn Public Library that has Sunday Hours. turned out that the Brooklyn Central Library was CLOSED in observance of New Years and will reopen on Monday. Lucky for Aidan, I was able to contact his father who googled the nearest Barnes & Noble which was in Park Slope. Very close to where we were.

Now, for any of you who know Park Slope know that parking is a itch with a capital "B" and we were JUST hit with a major snowstorm the week before to which the DSNY forgot about Brooklyn, so to say parking spots were FEW and FAR between is an understatement.

OK- the flashback has passed.

Part of me wanted to teach him a lesson- He knew about this "book on a state" since Wednesday, he should face the jury and get in trouble for not bringing one in. Apparently, his teacher is very strict on deadlines & forgetting assignments (and I don't blame him.)

I should have let Aidan learn this lesson... and here is where my weakness lies.
(yes it's true- as perfect as I seem, I do however possess a few flaws Chat Icon )
I remember what that feels like... I remember the anxiety one gets on a Sunday night when you remember you had an assignment due. I remember frantically calling over to the McNeill house across the street (hoping to GOD they were home) b/c THEY had a set of Encyclopedias... I remember that panic & fear and guilt knowing... "I did it again..."

So I caved. Googled B&N...b/c forget a public library being open at this god awful hour... (actually the Central Library JUST closed at 10.)

The B&N on Court St. in Downtown BK was open to 11...

Then I look outside. It's POURING so hard the rain is coming to you vertically & horizontally like those fancy showers you see on cribs.

Again- parking in that part of BK is a female dog... so I google how long it would take by bus and PLEASE is there a bus that would go from Greenpoint to Downtown without much walking? (actually the G train did- but then a 7 block walk.) Nope- bus takes 51 minutes + a .8 mile walk.

In the car we go. It's 10:15pm... The heavens were looking down on me b/c heck the BQE was absolutely CLEAR and I guess everyone in Brooklyn was avoiding the rain b/c we found a metered spot right away (don't have to pay after 7pm - SCORE!)


Too many kids in the class picked NY so the teacher limited the amount he would accept.

We both wanted to cry and hung our heads in defeat about to leave the store when I passed by the Travel section.

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you never know, right?

guides...guides...guides... the best places to see when in Colorado.... San Francisco walking tours... Cheap Eats in Michigan...

and there it was:

"A Kid's Guide to Washington D.C."

HEY! Washington D.C. is it's own STATE! It's a STATE!!!

Sold! And the money is coming out of the money Mommy owes Aidan... (I rarely have cash on me at home...)

So, Aidan is $14.00 down in his X-Box 360 fund, mommy feels like a superhero... and the little guy will not get in trouble at school.

I got about 1000 "I love you moms.." on the way home and I feel tad sh*tty for enabling him... I know sooner or later he's going to have to REALLY FALL.

I just couldn't do it this time. I did, however, inform him that I will be serving him with a list of demands for the following month to make up for this... and NEXT time this happens, he will be punished with NO VIDEO games b/c there will be NO CHANCE IN HECK he would forget again.

On the ride home we discussed possible strategies to better help him on his "disability"

Like perhaps writing due dates for assignments other than nightly homework on the white board in the kitchen, etc.

The heavens were good to me again b/c I was able to find a parking spot on my street that wasn't more than a block away from my apt....

good night and good luck.

Comments (1)

This is my box.
May 19 2009 11:28AM

...... weirdos. Chat Icon I wouldn't go THERE... Chat Icon

Boxes help carve out the space in which an art object exists. This limited context restricts issues to the space within the box, thereby providing distance for the creator and making the problem more manageable. The box also unifies several different sides. This works with the interior/ exterior polarity to enhance the use of the box visually and metaphorically unite opposites. Planning ahead helps in problem solving abilities, tests ideas and in making judgments.

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I'm an energetic person so my box is a brightly colored blue..I like things neat & orderly so all sides of the box are the same color...The little bits of paper vary in size and glued on top of each other because I find myself to be a colorful person, with many layers which is why I glued different colors onto each square or rectangle. Although I like things to be neat & orderly, I have what you called 'organized chaos' in my life, which is why the colors of the little squares vary in color dramatically.

The reason why I made the pattern of the squares within squares a little skewed is because although I seem to always have to have control, (a personality trait I am desperately working on,) sometimes I am not able to have it and things may fall to the side a bit. Of course I recognize that this is OK, but I can’t help but feel a little out of control when it does happen. The pattern goes around the entire four walls of the exterior of the box. Organized, yet slightly 'off' The way I seem on the outside.

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The inside of the box tells a different story...I stuffed it with black and dark blue tissue paper and I sprinkled little bits of paper everywhere because as neat and organized and in (almost) control I am, on the inside, I consider myself an absolute mess compared to how I *want* to be.

I’m still trying to figure out where my life is going and it has been an overwhelming and frustrating process. While I am working out those ‘kinks,’ people would never know it because I am able to ‘suck it up’ and do what I have to do to get by. (The organized little squares.) I cope. It’s the best I can do, and so far it has worked for me, though I can’t help but feel like I’m putting on a facade.

In art therapy, the use of boxes provides a useful way to create a visual record of the client's attempt to integrate the opposing parts of the self, a frequent and significant therapeutic goal.

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for you
May 13 2009 10:41PM

If only I could bottle up all the feelings inside & lock them away so I can remember what your hair looks like right after you had a bath & I comb it to the side…

I would. The only way I know how is to let the tears swell up so when I close my eyes they are released onto my cheeks. It is sometimes therapeutic and I need this form of expression,

Your cheeks are just the right plumpness for kissing & I can tell the exact moment that you fall asleep by the way you breathe. As much as I struggle each night for that moment, I want to wake you up so I can kiss you more.

In between slumber & awake you sigh

"that’s enough kisses mommy."

It can never be enough.

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And so it begins...
Feb 17 2009 2:06PM

The internet life... For my son.

He is off from school today and the poor little guy is stuck with me in my office for about 8 hours so I allowed him to purchase a month of 'club penguin' with his OWN money. (Which he has been BEGGING me for, for months...)

He's been working pretty hard and I made him sign a contract that he will eat his vegetables without giving me any GUFF... etc etc.

I also allowed him the SPECIAL opportunity to actually talk to people as long as he promised not to disclose any information about himself. This privileged is only available today while I can monitor his usage. Normally, they can say a set of sentences to each other like 'hey what's up' and 'how are you'

Well... He's already had 'drama' in cyber-world.

Apparently for the last hour or so he's been paling around with a "Katie" character... playing games and such. Exchanging little heart icons etc etc. (He told me they're in love in the Penguin world and are thinking about marriage)

Well, apparently while gallivanting around the Disney inspired cyber home, "Code Pink" said hello to my son and "Katie" told her to 'Get lost.' My son, being an equal opportunity penguin told 'Katie' that it made him sad.

What did 'Katie' do? What anyone would do online. COMPLETELY MISCONSTRUE THE CONTEXT and peaced out... ANd, to add insult to injury... she SO TOOK MY SON OFF HER FRIENDS LIST.

Aidan sat dazed and confused and pronounced... I just lost my best friend...

Within moments, "Code Pink" sent little Casanova an invitation to meet her in "The Lounge"and now the two of them just sent each other little heart icons. She is now his new best friend and he has placed "Katie" on his 'ignore list'

Chat Icon Chat Icon Chat Icon Chat Icon Chat Icon Chat Icon Chat Icon Chat Icon

Is this the precursor to online sex chats? Cause I need to know.

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Raising The Next Generation of Men
Sep 5 2008 10:20AM

Let's face it.. These days, kids ARE growing up faster.

In some ways, it's simply part of a kid's natural journey toward independence. But child development experts say that physical and behavioral changes that would have been typical of teenagers decades ago are now common among "tweens" — kids ages 8 to 12.

Some of them are going on "dates" and talking on their own cell phones. They listen to sexually charged pop music, play mature-rated video games and spend time gossiping on MySpace. And more girls are wearing makeup and clothing that some consider beyond their years.

I'm doing my part in raising a respectful gentleman... Here is an example of how:

Whenever I pick up lil' man A from my neighbor's apartment, I am bombarded with 3 little bouncy midgets tugging on my legs begging me if they can come over to my house.

'SUUUUUUUUUUURE!' is my response as they cheer with joy. (and yes-- that is the EXACT reaction I got from Eric when I took him home the first time we met.) [tangent] yes, the love of my life, and I...were a one night stand that turned into a rest of my life stand... so don't knock it gals[/tangent]

I figure, my neighbor is kind enough to help a sistah out & watch her most precious angel every day after school, let me give her some alone time. I also figure, they cancel each other out and keep each other occupied so I can cook dinner, or clean etc etc. (who am I kidding-- it's so I can lay on the couch for a little bit)

Except it was a Friday night and Lil man & I ALWAYS order a pizza.

So lil' man is sitting next to Christina, and older woman, (she was seven, he six...) but small like a peanut. The child has the face of an angel.

I'm sitting directly across from them, reading the newspaper and paying no mind while i eat, when I hear my son address her:

'Hey Christina, know what? My mommy took me to see the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe play on Christmas Eve....'

[takes a bite of his pizza]

'And there was this girl in the play..'
[pauses. takes another bite of his pizza]

'and she was so beautiful...'
[takes a sip of his soda]

Christina, hasn't even LOOKED at him... She's listening, but just paying attention to her pizza.

'She looked just like you Christina...' he says in a small voice.
[takes a bite of pizza]

'Her eyes were beautiful..'

'and her hair was beautiful..'

'just like yours...'
[takes a sip of soda]

'She was so beautiful...'
[shaking his head, looking at his pizza]

Christina STILL hasn't really acknowledged what Aidan was saying to her but she knew he was talking to her. As for myself, it was so hard for me to hide that I was listening, for I wanted to jump up & snuggle him to death for being so adorable. But I decided not to bring any attention to it because now that Aidan is a little older, he easily gets embarrassed.

Later that night, as I was tucking him into bed, I kissed each of his cheeks and whispered to him:

'ALWAYS tell girls they are beautiful...'

and he blushed, but smiled widely and hid his face in his pillow..

Comments (4)

Introspective Mommy moment... plus playground etiquette
Sep 4 2008 9:03AM

I have to stop watching my son from afar.

[Quick little set up]

When my alarm clock went off at 6am, I decided we only need 20 minutes to get ready for school in the morning and since we have to leave my apartment by 7:30 to make it to the bus stop in time for Aidan to board, we can sleep until 7am. (Aidan almost ALWAYS crawls into my bed around 3am, coincidentally immediately after Eric leaves for work)

For some reason, I can't seem to 'get' my alarm clock buttons right. So instead of changing the alarm to 7am, I accidentally changed the TIME to 7am so when my body clock woke up at 7:52 I jumped out of bed realizing Aidan missed the bus.

Not that big of a problem because I own a car, and Aidan's school is about 15 minutes away and the doors open at 8:37am. Meaning, we didn't have to leave our apartment until about 8:20 for us to be at school on time. So, I'll be about 1/2 hour late for work, but I work alone in my own isolated office (a story for another day...) it's not a big deal.

The reason for this little backstory? I drove him to school early enough for him to play with the other children in the schoolyard before the doors opened. (he loves that)

[/Quick little set up]

(((how is THAT for a tangent...?)



There were a bunch of 'big kids' who were obviously friends, playing some game of tag together on the monkey bars.. One of them was pretty fresh with the others & casually (but with a serious undertone) teasing everyone. Aidan just bounced around playing by himself, but I can tell he was watching the other kids, kinda wanting to get in on the action. If someone teased another, calling them a 'poopy head' or whatever the cool thing to call someone in order to put them down is these days. (In my day, it was 'nice head' or 'jerkoff') Aidan would laugh along with them... and you can sense that he wanted to be involved but no one was noticing him.

[sn0rt] I always laugh when I think of the term...'nice head' WHAT DID THAT MEAN??? My POS neighbor ALWAYS said that to other people

I know this is NOT an issue, but it breaks my heart or at least makes it beat a little harder for the little guy. He's always talking about 'the big kids' in the park and finding ways to impress them. It makes me just realize that one day he might get teased or feel left out.

Generally, EVERYONE likes Aidan. He gets along with other children extremely well and doesn't seem to have a shyness problem. He has no inhibitions with going up to a group of kids he doesn't know too well and involving himself.. (Jesus, where'd he get THAT from...)

[another tangent]-- my husband has an issue sometimes because when we go out, I talk to a lot of people.. That's how WE met, ya know? i.e: I'm not shy.

[/another tangent]

I don't know why I'm so worried. Aidan has a lot of self confidence (of course i'm still pondering at what EXACT age we lose our innocence of just being ourselves...) I think this is part of the reason if not THE MAIN reason I enrolled him in Karate classes. If you KNOW you can kick someones ***, you have a lot more confidence in yourself... Simply put, but am I wrong?

[yes, another tangent in the form of a story I wrote about 2 years ago]

Let's get real, Most of life's lessons are first taught on the playground. Aidan was once the *new kid in the playground* and he's still at the age where no one really intimidates him. It doesn't surprise me that he blindly runs over to a group of older boys who were playing in the pile of dirt kids in the city use as a sandbox. Edging his way into the action one of them (and evil looking child... reminiscent of Scott Farcus in A Christmas Story) stops the group & hollars:

"You can't play with us.. You're new. And you're probably in Pre-K"

If I remember correctly, this is the same little piece of (flowers and roses) that upon his arrival to the grounds one afternoon, notices Aidan playing with a bunch of other kids, stops his bike.. says to his friend:

"Who's that chump?" I assumed he was the mayor of the playground and I can only imagine this kid in High School.

I swore to myself, that when Aidan reached school age, and may be subjected to *teasing* that it will take every ounce of my energy to stop me from getting all Hand that Rocks the Cradle on anyone who dares to bother my sweet innocent angel of a child. You know the scene where Rebecca Demorney goes to the play ground and tells the bully to stop f****** with the little girl she's watching. That would be me.

Unscathed and unaffected, Aidan still tried to nuzzle his way in on the sand action as I just stood there, grabbed my heart, and watched. 'They'll work it out... they'll work it out...' I repeated to myself over & over as again, the little punk, this time with an entire chorus chanted:

"You're a baby... you're in Pre-K.."

And aidan's face turned into the angry stay-puff marshmallow man & replied:

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'I'm not a baby!!'

This time, as the little trooper tried to penetrate the dirt sand circle, the boys physically blocked him out, even pushing him at times. By now, the moms of the older boys came running over to scold them for teasing. Of course, the little punk was left with a baby sitter who was on the other side of the playground chasing his toddler sister around.

Always thinking on my toes, I grabbed the Spider-Man plane my brother Ben gave him for his birthday that we could not quite figure out yet, pumped it up & threw it as hard as I could. The darn thing took off & flew above the parking lot, 2 garages and made a quick turn towards one of the buildings. It quickly diffused the situation as all the boys went

"WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAH" and ran towards it. All I could think of was: 'wow. the damn thing actually works.'

Of course, after Aidan & I returned to the park having retrieved the plane, they all surrounded him. Patting him on the shoulders, they were falling over themselves asking if they could have a turn next. Aidan, god bless his little heart was all excited & jumped around saying 'Ok, ok guys....' He was just so happy they were even talking to him... Hell, he's a better person than me, I would have told them to go **** themselves.. Especially the little ring-leader.

Then it hit me. My baby... my beautiful innocent little baby is entering a world of mean-spirited children and will most probably get teased for something or another. Just watching his innocence that day brought tears to my eyes, because he DOESN'T know how to be mean. He doesn't know when someone is even making fun of him he is that innocent. I don't know how long that innocence lasts... When do our children lose that sense of security? Watching how quickly the other boys turned against him within the time the little punk who held the conch snapped his dirty little hands, scared me. Although I stayed out of it, I am not always going to be around to protect him. For goodness sakes, he is entering Kindergarten in a New York City public school this coming September. He might as well put away his Thomas the Tank ENgine toys & start playing with guns. He'll probably loose his virginity by 8, I mean let's face it: This is a generation that's lost an even bigger piece of innocence. This is a generation that lives with the everyday threat of violence in their schools. I'm going to elaboate on that thought later, but all I know is, we survived last Saturday.

Eventually the kids were all running about playing with each other, being civil. I heard through the network of moms at the playground that the little punk is a troublemaker. Luckily, I'm not the only one who thinks so.

(Ooooooh I will drop that kid on his *** so hard if he pulls any more cr@p with my baby)

(I kid... I kid... )

As we were leaving Aidan was yelling at the top of his lungs

"Goodbye Nicholas... Goodbye Thomas... goodbye Donovan..."

No one was listening. God he's so sweet sometimes it makes me want to cry.

Later in the evening, I asked Aidan how he felt when the boys wouldn't let him play with him.. He didn't even bat an eye and said

"Oh they were just mean to me because they thought I was new, but I told them I'm not new anymore."

You're certainly right kiddo. You just survived the playground.

Jesus, who could even THINK of being cruel to this face:

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[heart melts]

Is it ever going to end? Aidan said the other day that girls are lucky because they don't have to worry about being beat up. Yes, I told him.. but girls are MEAN to each other. Of course I went off on a tangent about how girls are petty and cruel and will hurt each other with words far worse than a black eye. Aidan lost interest when I went off on my rant and pointed out: 'but boo boos hurt.'

(OMG what if I have a girl someday?!)


Did anyone ever see the movie Parenthood? There is this great scene towards the end where Jason Robards says to Steve Martin with regards to [Steve Martin's] 9 year old son having problems,

"It never ends. I'm 64. Larry's 27. He's still my son... ."

Throughout, it's the children who change the parents, the parents who suffer the growth pangs, who split at the emotional seams.

My mother always said that to me... No matter how old I am, (I was 32 when I wrote this) she will ALWAYS worry about me simply because I am her daughter.

I need to relax SOON, because he was only SIX... and I was having these emotions over him watching a bunch of older children on the school playground. AND HE WAS SMILING!!

Just being a kid, and watching.

Comments (2)

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