Sunday Soup

I make soup stew or enchaladas every Sunday.  We have food.  We have warmth and loving grandchildren, we have friends and family.  Thank you O, for being a special buddy.  Our hikes are quiet and lovely.  You appreciate stopping for banana slugs, tadpoles and poop with fur, feathers or apple chunks.  I really like you. Grandpa and I also have one another.  Thanks for all of this.

Ellie puts a little plastic kitty in each of 8 colored cups on the play table (used to be our coffee table) and walks along the row she’s made, “kitty, kitty, kitty, chicken”  That’s when I notice that the last one has a hen poking from the top.  She picks it up and gives it a kiss.  You are building a block structure with a parakeet from the animal set inside the cardboard fairy house.  “This is a cozy house for you” you say.  “Its warm and dry.  You have a new bed.  Good night, birdy”, and you sing a song very quietly.  Things are pretty okay with you two. Except when the public health nurse shows up to check on us.

The other day your mommy listened to a team of well-meaning people about children’s diets, eating habits and cleanliness. Then she came over and told you to stop putting your finger in your nose because of germs and lectured you on how people get sick.  You’d have thought you had brought a dead maggoty carcass in the living room or something when you put your hand in your pants to check things out down there.  My goodness, Mommy.  Then she told me not to feed you between meals and throw out your food and you get nothing else if you don’t eat it in one sitting. And furthermore, you whined that you forgot when you got up for a minute and left your oatmeal on the table, crying that you were sorry and came back to shove it into your mouth hurriedly.  No, Mommy no.  Please let’s slow down here.  Kids that are 1 and nearly 4 just eat a bit here and there some days and eat lots others.  Let me manage this.  Let them. I know you have no instinct to rely on, no way of processing all this new information, but it is hard on everyone the yo-yo ing rules….neglect then too much attention to the details, then ignoring again when you are tired.  I know your Mommy wants to fix everything.  I know that.

Your birthday is Saturday, buddy.  Let’s have fun.  We’ll have some cake, and candles.  And I know that’s all you need.  But we want to give you a few presents, too. Maybe we’ll go to a pizza place.  Maybe we’ll sing.  You will be four.  Funny when you count you always skip four.  Maybe now you’ll remember it.  We sure love you.  gma

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