Today’s activities included a chanterelle hunt, an activity that required a high tolerance for mud, bugs and failure, as we certainly didn’t find enough for dinner. The kids petered out early when one required the bathroom, but the dog and I soldiered on, finding…zilch. Our only stroke of luck came early, and each child was able to pick one mushroom. Dinner, though, was mushroom free–it just didn’t seem worth the bother, although in retrospect I could have served the one each!
Today was our best post-Rory day yet. In fact, we had a good weekend. Both parents had a share of alone time. There were various mixed up kid activities–swimming with everyone, playdate for Lily, canoeing with just Sam. Rory paid her first visit to our babysitter’s house (with Lily and Wyatt) and loved it. She loves, loves, loves Heather. I even felt able to scoop up two extra kids (big kids) on the way to the pool yesterday, and they repaid me a thousand times over by letting Rory jump in to them, again and again. I don’t like having Rory jump in to me. This has nothing to do with Rory, and everything to do with me hating to be splashed. Well, I guess it has something to do with her–if she just wouldn’t belly flop! It’s not personal, though. It was pretty much a perfect summer weekend–biking, canoeing, blueberry picking, swimming, hiking (if you don’t take into account that we had to wear long pants, boots and raincoats for said hike, because it was raining and because of the aforementioned bugs). Downright idyllic, and certainly part of the reason to live in New England. Not everybody did everything, either, but it was still good.
Do I love her yet? That’s a recurring theme of one of my favorite adoption essays. Do I love her yet?
Can I say that I’m fond of her? I like her quite as much as any of the kids’ friends, say. I no longer resent the extra work she represents–well, not any more than any of the other kids, say. My snuggles are no longer perfunctory, my tone not as sharp when I’m irritated, my kisses becoming genuine. In other words, I’m not quite as thoroughly faking it.
Someone pointed out in the comments that in times like these, there are more boo boos needing to be kissed–everyone needs a little extra tenderness, and they’ll scrape or bump anything to get it. This is so clearly true. Every ten minutes, someone has bumped a toe or closed a finger in the door, and I am trying to bear with it. I know, I know, what kind of person wouldn’t rush to their kid to soothe a skinned knee? What kind of a Mommy Dearest am I?
An impatient one, one who’s trying to get dinner on the table or put shoes on the kid who’s just changed his mind and taken off the shoes we just put on to get us out the door, and one who’s left, it seems, every single thing she’s started in the last month to rush to and sooth a suddenly wailing child. I thought it was just the addition of one more highly bruise-able kid, but now that I see that it’s more than that–I do think the commenter was right–it’s helped. But I have to admit, most of that sympathy–now that I’m faking.