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Archive for the ‘Firsts’ Category

A. had his first day of preschool today.  We all survived, and nothing bad happened. (I will repeat this to myself.) “Preschool” is 9:30-11:30am Mondays and Tuesdays, with a parent present on one of those days. Wifey is going Mondays and I’ll go Tuesdays, at least to start out.  It was hard for him, and consequently, us. He worked really hard to be OK there, and if I take a step back I can see that he really did a marvelous job. Mostly, he was overwhelmed. He’d never been in that kind of school/societal environment before, where he’s expected to do things in a group of people and perform challenging tasks like sharing, pouring water into appropriate vessels, watching a puppet show without grabbing the puppet. I think ALL the other kids had a leg up — they’d been in a preschool program, or day care — so they followed the rules, moved from “station” to station peacefully, ate oranges right off the rinds (we’ve been indulging him senseless by feeding him bits of orange taken off the rind) and drank out of a non-sippy cup (A. still uses a sippy cup, because, well, we didn’t realize there was a social stigma against sippy cups.).  He is a sensitive spirit, and is affected by his environment and happenings. Transitions are often hard, encounters are often taken to heart, things really should be in their proper place for the world to spin correctly. This first day of preschool was a merry-go-round of transitions, weird snacks, lots of activities and new people.  He made a few pleading “should we go home?” runs for the door, but mostly, he coped. During one round of heightened distress, I sang him his special song about all the people that love him and he calmed, leaned his ear closer to the song, tucked into me and smiled. When we all sang “Twinkle Twinkle” at the end, he was visibly touched that everyone apparently knew his special song (what are the chances?!) and was moved as he contemplated that this all must be for him.

Tonight he and I called his Grama and told her all about preschool. In the story we told (because we become our stories), it was all really wonderful and all the kids are his friends that he loves to share with. Snack was lovely and Teacher Linda thrilling. We can’t wait to go back tomorrow.

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First Haircut

I did it quietly without fanfare while he was playing sweetly with his Mommy in our bed. Wifey was dying a little inside as I nipped at his wispy baby hair. I felt glad to find our little family at this rite of passage. Mister Finn hardly noticed. If you look at the quantity of hair, I didn’t take off much at all; mostly I just trimmed his “bangs.” But it felt HUGE, like our baby had suddenly become a little boy. I put the small downy mass of light faun brown in an envelope in a special place.

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About Pride (and Prejudice)

{I wrote this for Mister Finn a few weeks ago but it got lost in the hospital adventure.}

To my A.,

You are only one year old and you can’t read yet (though sometimes it seems like you can), but I am writing you a letter today to tell you about Pride. You went to your first Pride parade yesterday!  We walked through the streets of Seattle and people cheered for us, for you, with colorful flags waving and music playing. You bobbed along in my “pouch” like a baby kangaroo, excited by the drums and costumes and people clapping.

You are growing up SO FAST, that I imagine it won’t be too long before you’re asking us, “What’s Pride?” just like you’ll ask us “What’s Halloween?” or “What’s Christmas?” I feel both happy and sad at the thought of explaining Pride to you. I’m happy because Pride is a fun, joyful holiday where people all over the world celebrate the people they love. I’m sad because the Pride holiday exists because of prejudice.

I wish I could only tell you about Pride, and not prejudice; I wish I could shower you with all the beautiful things in the world, and protect you from anything bad. But I think the best protection I can give you as your mama is to teach you about the world and how to survive in it. You are a strong, happy, smart boy, and your heart is the size of an ocean. I don’t doubt that even with its flaws, you will find the world beautiful.

So, sweet thing, there are a lot of unhappy people in the world that live their lives in fear. People do crazy things when they are unhappy and afraid. They are so scared of everything that instead of seeing other people as potential friends, they see them as enemies. They hate people without ever having met them! They are “prejudiced” because they are judging people prior to knowing them. The unhappy people in our country have hated many people in the past. They’ve hated the Native Americans, the African Americans, the Japanese Americans, the Mexican Americans, the Muslim Americans. They often hate people that are different from themselves. Then, a few years later, they realize they should not have hated those people. Right now, in your lifetime, the unhappy people in our country are afraid of families that have two mothers or two fathers.

We can’t explain what makes people so unhappy, we can just hope that they find love and happiness in their lives someday. We celebrate “Pride” because we are proud! We are proud to be alive and to be happy, and proud to love other people. We play music and dance and we look for rainbow fairies. We celebrate families of all kinds: familes with two moms, families with two dads, families with zero moms and zero dads but one grandma and one brother, families with one mom, families with one mom and one dad, families with two uncles, families with one dad and two aunts: there are SO MANY different kinds of families and none of them is better than the other. We all get to live and love on this planet together, and we are proud.

Every June, people celebrate Pride in Hong Kong,

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in Dublin,

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In Atlanta,

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In India,

India Gay Parade

In Israel,

MIDEAST ISRAEL GAY PRIDE

in Seattle,

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and in many more cities all over the world.

Pride is a reminder of the beauty and bounty in a life filled with love.

I am so happy that you are the sundrop I get to love and find rainbow fairies with.

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Love,

Your Mama

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We have a tooth!

Finally!  I have not gotten a picture of the little bugger yet, but hope to soon. So, first tooth: 10.5 months. A little bit of a late bloomer, I guess? All of his other baby friends already have some; though what an odd thing to worry about (not that I was worried, really)– it’s not like he would not ever have teeth.

It is on the bottom, and next to it another is surfacing. Razor sharp, these new sprouts! To be dulled only by time and experience, I guess. Ah, life.

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First Birthday

It was a beautiful day.  It is hard to wrap my brain around the fact that it has been a full year since A. was born. But here we are: he is ONE! I feel victorious, blessed, and tired. As beautiful, important days often are, the day was a frenzied collection of minutes; the minutes a frenzied collection of content that has been planned carefully yet rushed to completion. The ceremony was really lovely. All of the people there were so happy for us, and for our baby boy. He made it. We made it.

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Well, aside from the hundreds of strange, new people that took care of him for three months in the hospital. But it’s different now. He is mine now.

We met someone that we, and our dog, like enough to be our part-part-part-time nanny. Nanny just sounds better than Babysitter, don’t you think?  R. is maybe a little younger than us, a filmmaker, quiet, warm, smart, and good with Mister Finn. It looks like she is going to be our nanny for 8 hours/week!!!!  4 hours on Mondays and 4 hours on Thursdays.  We are doing it so that I can go to the studio for those chunks of time. Wifey will be here working at home while R. is here.  I am very excited about the prospect of this actually working. Yet on Monday, when the time actually came to let her take care of my baby, I became a freakish wreck and embarrassed myself. I turned into some kind of neurotic beast.

I was totally anxious, edgy, and hovering. I felt out of control; I couldn’t make myself calm down. I had to leave so that I wouldn’t drive everyone crazy. I’m afraid to imagine what I would have been like if Wifey hadn’t been there with them the whole time.  When I came home I smothered A. with kisses and marveled that Look! He’s OK! He is fine! He survived! So dramatic.

W. and I both agreed that I will have to leave tomorrow. Preferably before R. gets here. I know having her is a good thing, because I do desperately want/need to have time in the studio. Hopefully it will get easier.

I am still disoriented to find myself in the position of the mother instead of the babysitter.

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First Christmas

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Now I shall take a break from obsessively reading Ask Moxie‘s sleep-related archives, and turn temporarily to happy thoughts. (How is it that I have so much writing time?  Well, our open-ceilinged apartment is dark, in hopes of setting a sleep-inducing mood for Mister Finn, and my computer is the only real source of light. After dealing with a mostly dark winter Seattle day, I don’t want to sit in the dark tonight. Also, A’s current favorite calming song is one that I hate, and it is on repeat.  You know, to induce sleep. I can’t block the song out unless I occupy my mind elsewhere. So, Wifey is rocking our awake boy in the dark, listening to “sucky ass music” as she muttered a moment ago.  Now, she mutters, “I hate The Wedge.”  The Wedge is a reflux wedge A. sleeps on, which was fashioned for him by an OT at Children’s. Another post for another day. Last night he threw up on The Wedge and we had to carve out the barf-soaked foam and make new straps. Anyway! Happy thoughts!)

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We had a lovely first Christmas, though we were snowed in and couldn’t go up to my folks’ house for the day. It was very mellow, our boy was in a great mood most of the day, and he was so sweet playing with his new toys. He knew they were new, and studied them intently, picking them up and putting them down. Now that he can sit, he is a pensive, cuddly little lump on the floor. So busy. He got some wooden rings, which he banged, and a wooden car, which he banged, and many clothes, and a beautiful book. I made a vegetable pot pie, and we ate a lot of chocolate. It was nice to think that we are starting our own traditions for our new little family. And I took the puppy for a walk in the snow.

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my favorite present. ever.

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