Monday, August 28, 2006

an hour with my two-year-old

I recently took Iz to the local outdoor pool. That was the pleasant portion of the day. We even managed to leave at 12:30pm without a full-on meltdown tantrum (sometimes I have to carry him out kicking and screaming). Was it the promise of a hot dog for lunch? Unlikely, Iz doesn't care about food (often even when he's hungry -- means he'd have to stand still).

So, we get home to attempt a meal before Iz became too tired to eat. Exhaustion usually sets in around 12:30pm, so I was pushing it. Things felt a bit urgent. I had to pee and I was still in a wet swimsuit. But I didn't pee or change. A hot dog and leftover broccoli were needed. (Iz has rediscovered willingness to eat broccoli.) I also made my lunch (a hummus and spinach sandwich) because I had things to do during Iz's nap.

We ate -- him in dry diaper and clothing, me still wet with a full bladder.

I left the room to put the dishes away, clean up a bit. And I hear a clattering -- lots of little hard things hitting the floor. I didn't worry about it... yet...

Iz had gathered and thrown handfuls of Zi's dogfood pellets all over the floor. I asked him to clean it up (a bit stern, perhaps I snapped, even yelled). He actually shook his head and said, "Uh uh." I am not suggesting he usually listens to me; he usually just ignores me and goes about his business. I had never heard him say, "Uh uh."

I took him to his room (time out in a chair or on a step doesn't work). He got his perfect little-upside-down-U frown and burst into tears.

I left him there screaming, cleaned up the dogfood, finally got to the bathroom, and even changed into dry comfy clothes.

Then, of course, I had to go comfort Iz, lie down with him, and nurse him to sleep (oh, yeah, he still nurses twice a day because I can't figure out how to wean him -- he'd never sleep again).

Sunday, August 20, 2006

passionfruit, my college boyfriend, and greener grass

I find myself wanting to move to Sydney, Australia, and thinking about my college boyfriend (who continued to make appearances in my life until we were in our late 20s). These are not good signs. They are “the grass is greener” signs.

Sure, I know Sydney. My mother lives there. I went to high school there for six months. (This escape to Sydney happened when I was 16, and I was definitely the driver of our move there. Almost as soon as I got there, I wanted to be back in New York City – so even then it was indeed a misguided escape, probably from some deep teenage angst.) I could live in a city! I could eat passionfruit (five for a dollar last time I was there, instead of the $2 each in the States, when you can find them). I wouldn’t have to mail order the best coffee ever (Vittoria) for my espresso maker. Speaking of coffee, I could have flat whites– which are a slightly stronger version of our lattes as far as I can tell – almost anywhere, instead of having to go to yet another Starbucks (though there are now a few Starbucks in Sydney). I even love the supermarkets – and the packaging of foods. I swear it is all smaller there, and less emphatically labeled (a calmer approach seems to prevail in marketing).

But I would be so far away – though Abraham does not run screaming from the idea, but I am sure the rest of our extended families would be upset to see us go so far. Sydney feels familiar yet fresh. And it is a city. I miss city living so much.

The college boyfriend is harder to write about. I could describe him – let’s call him Adam – and many things about him were fabulous. We were together for a long time. We grew up a lot together. Details are easy to remember, but I don't feel like committing them to "paper." I always worry when I start thinking about him, even dreaming about him (just run-of-the-mill dreams – nothing overtly sex-related here… really!). We were a good match – and there used to always be the feeling that we would end up together in the end (that’s a tad redundant, but you get the point)… though that feeling disappeared when I met Abraham, whom I love and did marry four years ago, whom I had a great kid with... But now I am thinking about Adam…

So what do I need to face here in my own life that is making me look at greener grass? What angst do I need to deal with? Living in the suburbs? Being married and having kids? Am I beginning a mid-life crisis? Too many questions. Am I ever just going to be able to relax and be?