Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Crazier By the (Half) Dozen

About a month ago I attended my high school reunion.  Do you all remember it?  I spent an entire day in my hometown reminiscing and remembering what my life used to be like in that place.  After seeing those people and places that I once knew, it was very clear to me that there's no place I'd rather be than where (and who) I am right now.

Sure, there will always be the memory of carefree days at the mall and nights spent out in the cool breeze of the drive-in theater.  But who wouldn't trade in an expendable income and three pairs of Lucky jeans to wipe rear ends all day?  Really, just me?  What about noses... are you more comfortable with that imagery?

My career choices aside, there were a number of good things that came from my reunion, and one of them was the chance to reconnect with old friends.  My girl Alissa and I always have a wonderful time together, but I was equally as blessed to share a couple of hours with Tara.  Tara is a friend from way back who has followed an eerily similar path to mine which involved stops in College Junction, Marriagetown and is currently stationed in Kidville where she is busy chasing after her three year-old son and 10 month-old daughter.  As Alissa, Tara and I chatted about parenting our sons who all seem to have a little "Cael" in them, a plan was born.  We would get the kids together to play.

You know how you have an idea, and somehow it snowballs?  This idea rolled down the hill and landed in a snowbank.  On Sunday, Joel and I along with our boys, Alissa and her husband Anthony and their kids Treyton and Makynli and Tara, her husband Scott, their son Jake and daughter Addy got together at our house along with two calling birds and a partridge in a pear tree.

And we had a blast.

But I learned a few things.  At first I was afraid that the universe would implode if I put three highly "spirited" kids in one room together.  Amazingly, the universe stayed in tact but my basement/play room had seen better days.

I also learned that if you are anticipating an afternoon of playtime for six children, there had better be enough fun to go around.

I learned that, in the case of our families, first children are the real go-getters; they prefer to interact and play and wrestle.  The second children in our group made their own entertainment.  Graham tinkered with Daddy's mower and solidified his position as a future guy's guy.

Makynli daintily sorted broken chalk nubs from Cael's botched artistic endeavors.

And Addy played with dog poop in the grass.  (Coincidentally, I learned that if your lawn looks like a prairie preserve and you just don't have time to mow, you should at the least make an effort to pick up the piles of petrified dog poop in your yard.  Babies aren't picky.  Or at least they weren't before they were introduced to dog poop.)

I learned that when your son mysteriously goes missing and you find him in the house on the couch looking like this...

...chances are good you'll find one of these nearby.

Since not one of them finished their lunch, I learned that kids run on adrenaline rather than food.

And if you intervene and encourage additional energy, they revert to vegetable mode and collapse in a heap on the ground.

I learned that birds will circle them overhead and eye them like a lifeless carcass, but opt not to pick at them when they realize that rotting roadkill smells better than a sweaty, gassy three year-old.

And lastly, I learned that a weak-in-the-joints deer decoy should be properly stowed away or, at the very least, children should be warned of his issue with leprosy. 

You know, so they don't wind up like this.

But the biggest thing I learned is that I'm not alone.  I'm not the only mother in the world with a child that thinks big, plays hard and loves with his whole heart.  I'm not the only mother that gets frustrated and I'm definitely not the only mother that needs a glass of wine every now and then.

I learned that friends are invaluable-- especially the kid of friends that don't mind their baby with a little dog poop on the side.

I learned that even on a day as somber as September 11th, there are bright spots and smiles for the future.  There are children in the world that will fight for their right to run and play; children that will grow up to be adults with conviction, strength and character.

And I learned that poor Herman is on his last leg.  And his last head. 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Leave your own "ism". Cael and Graham double-dog dare you.