...my child sold your honor student the answers to the test...

Monday, November 22, 2010

Sometimes All It Takes Is A Song

I hate Monday mornings. It's almost inevitable that I will wake up with a groan, and do my best to not tantrum because the weekend is over... again. The coffee is almost never enough to get me out of my funk on Mondays, and I start my day off by constantly reminding Zavi to get his behind upstairs to get dressed before we're late for school.

This morning I not only had my normal Monday morning, but I also noticed, as I stepped on the deck to get a moment to clear my head, that I had a voicemail from my brother. We havent spoken in a year when he last told me I was a craptastic sister because I put my kids before him. Like it's some sort of contest with him. Well, actually, it is with him, but that's another issue.

This voicemail was basically telling me to answer the damn phone bitch (he called last night and I was downstairs gaming so I never heard the phone ring) and that we needed to clear the air before christmas time and we had World War 3.

Just what I want to wake up to on a Monday morning.

Wrangling the kids in the car, coffee in hand, and a headache already brewing, I started up the car. And a song came on that put a smile on my face. It was The Black Pearl, from Pirates of the Carribean. I love that song.It makes me think of the ocean, pirate bandannas, a sword strapped to my waist, the wind in my hair.

I turned up the volume, bopped along in the car, swinging my travel mug to and fro, while the kids beamed. A happy mom is a happy family. They know that well enough.

And then the song ended. I glanced in the rearview mirror to my kids, grins on their faces, and hit replay. And we listened to our pirate song all the way to school.

It's funny how such a small thing can make a difference in attitude. I may have to put that song on my phone so that I can listen to it whenever I feel a Monday morning funk coming on.


Saturday, November 6, 2010

May I Never "Grow Up"

I love costumes. Always have. In fact, I loved them so much, dressing up in different clothing and "becoming" someone else for a short period of time, that as I grew up I was heavily into theater. And I seriously considered it as an actual profession as an adult. I didn't pursue it only because by that time, J and I were seriously contemplating our future and what we most wanted. We decided we most wanted a family. And having traveled to L.A. to meet a casting agent who could help me launch a career in acting, I walked away with the knowledge that when we started a family I did not want to raise my future kids there. So I set aside that dream for another one, and one I don't regret.

But I still like costumes. And I love Halloween! I mean, how can you not like a day where it's ok to dress as ANYTHING you want to be AND get candy for doing it??? Talk about the perfect combo!

But J hates dressing up, and there is a part of me that feels a touch... self conscious maybe? when I am the only adult wearing a pirate outfit or bar wench costume. And over the years I allowed myself to tuck that fun aspect away too, although never forgotten.

But this year, I had an incident happen that made me realize I was being an idiot for holding back on something small and silly, but enjoyable that I loved, for the sake of self consciousness. And this one incident made me realize I need to stop "growing up" and allow myself to be a kid and enjoy costumes again no matter what people may think.

As Halloween approached, the boys started debating on what they wished to be this year.  Xavier wanted to be some random Pokemon I had never heard of (although I admit when Pokemon crops up in conversations I autotune out, nod my head, let my eyes glaze over and say "uh huh... of course dear.. great!... I'm glad you like them..."). Of course despite my efforts at looking for this particular Pokemon as a costume I had no luck, and put my foot down when Zavi implied that I was going to "have to" get crafty and sew him one. Actually I laughed my ass off at that remark. Because I can't sew to save my life. But finally he settled on a Zombie.

Soren really really really wanted to be Sponge Bob Square Pants. I'm not sure how to take that my 16 month old has 4 words, and one of them is "Bob". However, there were no costumes that were small enough for him. Then he wanted to be Mario. He saw the costume at a store and flipped out with excitement. Again though, no costumes his size. But he kept trucking along and finally found one that was not only cute, but his size, and it made him happy. Soren chose a Sock Monkey.

That left Ashe. And there was doubt in his mind what he wanted to be. He had talked about it since Summer and never once wavered in his choice. This year, Ashe would be Batman. But what's a Batman without a Robin? And in a 3 yr olds mind, who better to be his trusty sidekick than... Mom?

For a week, Ashe pleaded with me to be his Robin. And it dawned on me, that this time in our life, when the kids WANT the parents to dress up in costume, will not last long. Very soon, if I even dare contemplate a costume, it will make the boys shrink away in embarrassment. Of course I already warned them that when that time comes I will  embarrass them on purpose. If they're going to think I'm lame, I might as well give them a valid reason to think so! But right now, the thought of Mom or Dad joining in the fun of dressing up is a childs dream come true. And while if I had my choice on costumes, Robin would not be my first pick, I also thought that it was totally worth sacrificing my dignity knowing it would be a memory Ashe would hopefully cherish his entire life. Totally worth it.

So I went out and browsed the adult costumes with Ashe and Soren in tow. And I found a female Robin costume. I went into the dressing room with the 2 boys to try it on (all sales final) and came out to check myself out in the mirror. The first thing I noticed though, was the gigantic grin that covered Ashes entire face. It was a moment I'll remember forever. But then I turned to the mirror to get a look, and was fairly surprised.
 Hey.... this costume doesn't look half bad. In fact, I kinda liked it.

I had 2 chances to wear my costume with Ashe. One was at a TriangleMommies Trunk or Treat. I had to work at that event but being a Promotions Manager, I was definitely easy to spot! And the happiness on Ashes face when the two of us walked around together, Batman and Robin.... it was as it was meant to be. I also wore my costume with Ashe on Halloween itself. And while he was too busy running from door to door, I enjoyed wandering around the neighborhood in my costume.

I actually felt a little sad when, after the holiday was over, I put away all of our costumes. I didnt want to put my costume away. I wanted more chances to wear it. I liked how I felt in the costume, and I loved the smiles I got from the boys when I dawned my cape and mask. But while Robin is now in storage, she gave me a very important reminder. Life is a series of moments you never forget, and life is too short to put away all of your childish entertainments. Enjoy them, enjoy them with your kids, and it's ok to not grow all the way up.

Me, declaring contest winners at TMs ToT

Xavier and Ashe, enjoying ice cream

Batman, J, & Sock Monkey Soren

Finding my inner child as Robin =)