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About Girls

So I’ve had L and Niece 1 and 2, (5-year-old twin girls,) at my house for a couple of days. I am now going to make sweeping generalizations based on this time with 2 girls:

  1. Girls have tiny bladders. The two of them hit the potty at least 3 times to every 1 trip for L. How do moms of girls get anything done? Potty at home, and then again in the market immediately following? WTF?
  2. Girls have the capacity to be still and quiet. Honestly amazing.
  3. Because they can sit still for so long, girls are able to eat an enormous quantity of food in one sitting, provided the food is to their liking, which is no easy feat. (L is a fantastic eater and can pack away a ton of food, but because he doesn’t have anything resembling an attention span, he can’t actually sit down to eat a big meal.) I made a batch of pancakes and actually had to make more batter because they just wanted to keep eating them. Neither one is overweight, but niece 2 is especially skinny and she ate more pancakes than I could possibly.
  4. Although they are able, girls don’t often choose to be quiet. Instead they’d rather talk loudly, giggle or sing. Lots of singing. More singing than I could have imagined.
  5. If given a box of markers, a pad, and a bag of stickers, girls can sit still and play nicely for hours. Weird!
  6. Girls say the girliest shit. No joke, yesterday Niece 1 said “My heart is full of love. My eyes are hearts. Can you see the hearts in my eyes?”
  7. Girls are afraid of things. Riding bikes, walking down a steep staircase after looking eye-to-eye with a giraffe, being in a crowd in a new place – these things made the girls skittish, (sensibly so, L’s lack of fear corresponds directly with his lack of sense). I did a lot of hand-holding and I’m not used to that. The same hill that had the girls reluctant to step off of their brakes, saw L screaming down it, legs outstretched on either side of his bike, pedals wildly circling, whooping his little happy war cry.
  8. When girls fall down (at least these girls) they cry. It does not matter if they are hurt or not.
  9. Girls stay right underfoot and are most of the time touching me in some way. I’ve never had my toes stepped on so often, nor have I tripped over a kid or two as frequently as in the last 2 days.

I also learned something about L: he will do anything a big girl tells him to. He spent the day yesterday dressed in a skirt, hair up in purple clips, happily announcing that he was a “girlie girl.” This attracted some attention everywhere we went.

I even learned something about myself: I miss my baby S!

In the end it was a successful visit. The girls and L had a wonderful time. I am exhausted and will be happy to have my “peaceful” home back with just L and S. Oh, and baby S looks huge to me after 2 days away.

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Wannabe

I moved to my crunchy small town from Boston when L was 15 months old. My husband and I had just one car at the time, which he needed for work. I saw this as an opportunity to become a true mom of the area. I bought myself a trailer for my bike, a helmet for my son and was ready to embrace my latent inner-hippie. I took one preemptive practice run around the block a few times and then felt ready to be a real local. I imagined myself in the best shape of my life from biking everywhere! I imagined my days biking into town with my happy toddler, meeting up with some like-minded women, running a few errands and coming home feeling fit, refreshed, in-touch and like a great mom. I was going to be that mom and I was psyched.

For my first real outing, I packed L into the trailer with a snack and a drink and headed off to the supermarket. I loved the adventure of it all! I found the bike rack, figured out how to park my giant trailer there without obstructing the whole rack and felt great as I headed into the market. I still felt great as I packed L back into the trailer and surrounded him with the groceries: 2 gallons of milk fit nicely under his seat, eggs and raw meats in the back where he couldn’t reach them, non-fragile items packed all around him. It was a tight squeeze. Once I got it all secure, I hopped on for my ride home.

I had not considered several factors:

  1. Groceries are heavy;
  2. Heavy trailers are very hard to pull;
  3. The supermarket was downhill from my house, which means that my house was uphill from the supermarket;
  4. I was not so fit;
  5. I don’t really like things that are really hard;
  6. L has no patience for things that take a long time.

We finally made it home. I did not feel fit, refreshed, in-touch and like a great mom at all. I felt sweaty and sore and tired and obviously not fit. I felt irritated and angry at all those damn hippie moms with their damn happy kids in trailers. Instead of feeling like a great mom, I felt lousy for making L endure a very long, uncomfortable bike trip packed in with the groceries in the hot trailer listening to me curse at the world.

I knew I was not ever going to be that mom. Why did I think I ever would be? That very night I met my husband at the car dealership and we got our second car.

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