Sunday, May 30, 2010

Open Letters

Dear Mom--

You know how I used to use my pacifier to go to sleep? Yeah, I don't want to do that anymore. I would rather suck on a blanket. Or sometimes I like to use your pointer finger like a pacifier, but it's way more natural.

Also, since I'm opening up here, remember how I used to lay on your left arm to go to sleep? Could you switch it to your right? Cool. Thanks.

Not to be pushy, but remember how for like a week I really didn't want to nurse, and then I changed my mind and I wanted to nurse ALL the time, and then I decided I only wanted my bottle again? Well, I'd like to get back to basics again. Boobs, please.


Baby Logan

Dear Son--

Hey, I've got a friend, Dr. Ferber. I'm going to force an introduction here. Kisses!


Dear Dr. Ferber--

I'm such a fan of your "let's get these babies sleeping" method, but really? Do you really think you pioneered this method? You think cave women weren't like, "Wow, this kid's driving me crazy, but I HAVE NO CLUE WHAT TO DO!" Don't you think women have been letting babies cry themselves to sleep for eons without involving you whatsoever?

I'm just saying.


Dear Son--

Forget my last letter to you. I will now be employing a method of sleep training called common freaking sense. It is exactly like Ferberization. You will love it just as much as Ferberization, I hope. I know I will.

Love, Mom

Thursday, May 13, 2010

They Do?

Sometimes when I'm in public with my four kids, people will look at me and my herd. Generally, the two boys will be trying to slip things into the shopping cart, Veevs will be engrossed in a book (my daughter, that one) and Logan is probably fussing (because it's been like an HOUR since he's eaten and he is STARVING).

As I'm trying to move the whole herd ("Boys! Don't touch ANYTHING, okay? EVER AGAIN, you hear me?" "Veevs, watch where you're going, please. Veevs? Veevs? Veevs? LISTEN TO ME!"), invariably someone will say to me,

"Oh, enjoy this time. It goes by so fast! They grow up so quickly!"

While I politely fight down the urge to fling my cart at them and say, "Then they're all yours, sister!" I usually respond with a very weary, "They do?"

Because I feel like I've been doing this for the past twenty-seven years (technically that would mean I had my first baby at . . . oh, forget technically. I'm too tired to do the math.). Diaper, feed, nap. Diaper, feed, nap. Temper tantrum, time out, screaming. Temper tantrum, time out screaming. Directive, no response, WHY WON'T YOU LISTEN? Directive, no response, WHY WON'T YOU LISTEN? For years.

I'm sure some day it will feel like my kids grew up so quickly. Just not today. Or tomorrow. Or the next day . . .

Sunday, May 9, 2010

In Which I Officially Am OLD

Yesterday, a little girl called me "Ma'am". Now, we live in the South, where it's acceptable to do that to anyone over the age of fourteen, but for me, it was weird. She passed me on the roller rink and blithely yelled, "Excuse me, ma'am!" or it might have been, "Coming through, ma'am!" but either way the message was clear--youth and vitality passing age and exhaustion on the left.

So I sped up (I am quite amazing on a pair of quads, you know) and passed her, just to show her that I still "had it". I am sure she had been wondering. And I said, "Excuse me, sweetie!" as I passed so that she would feel the same level of acceptable Southern condescension that I had been subjected to. Because I'm like that.

I've been called worse, so I'm not sure why I was so annoyed by being called Ma'am. One time one of my students said something to me like, "I'm not sitting down, you bitch." (I'm not adding the italics for fun, here. I can't convey the way this student said it without italics. Or maybe all-caps. Yes, he said, "I'm not sitting down, you BITCH.") He was in a fit of pique and as someone who often suffered from fits of pique during my high school years, I knew just how to handle it. I think I said (in the sweetest, most well-modulated tone I could manage) "Yes, I am a BITCH (or bitch if you prefer). How sweet of you to finally notice. Now sit down before I really get bitchy." He sat. We moved on.

He wasn't one of my honors students, by the way, and this is how you can tell: Honors students are always like, "Oh, Mrs. Hadley, you're so funny." "You're so cute, Mrs. Hadley." "Can we please read another poem by Robert Browning, Mrs. Hadley?" and "Why, yes, Mrs. Hadley, you do look better when you gain sixty pounds during pregnancy!" Because honors students? Three-quarters of their smarts can be attributed to the fact that they have figured out that teachers love to reward sweetheart students with good grades (By the way, I loved teaching Honors classes. It was like being served up a side of self-esteem every morning.).

So, anyway. The point of that post must be recapped, since it was so convoluted:

1) I do not like being called "Ma'am"
2) I will retaliate with "Sweetheart"
3) I don't mind being called "Bitch" but you have to really mean it.
4) I love Honors students (and all other students who loved me first).
5) I am really a great roller-skater.