Wednesday, September 12, 2018

To The One Who Sings Showtunes Instead of Taking Naps

Dear LAK,

I still haven't come up with a new nickname for you to use here. I should work on that, I suppose. It's probably vastly inappropriate to refer to a preschooler as "Little AssKicker", but that's kinda my thing anyway. Vastly inappropriate. Which is also probably why you were singing "Turn It Off" from the Book of Mormon musical yesterday when you were supposed to be sleeping.


I mean, who lets their kids listen to that soundtrack?


You're going to be four in a few days, although I am pretty sure that you've already decided that you ARE four. All you need to confirm it is the birthday cake you have been talking about for months. You want me to re-create your cake from last year, but somehow also bury dinosaurs in it and add a volcano.

Which will probably happen. Your sisters are pretty good at coming up with those designs.

You are at school right now as I write this. You mostly love school, although there is always that brief moment of hesitation when you are supposed to be lining up to go in where you grab my leg or climb under my skirt and hang on for dear life. And then you shrug and figure you've gotta do what you've gotta do, so off you go.

You've gotten pretty independent this past year, and although I think it weirded you out to be in a room with kids you own age at first, you are loving it. The singing is probably your favorite, since you come home singing a different song every week.

The sun still rises and sets on your siblings, and you are glued to them from the second they get home in the afternoon.

You have developed an absolutely hilarious sense of humor, and somehow you can already conceptualize sarcasm and hyperbole, which is pretty freaking amazing. Your most favorite word to say right now is "caddywhompus". And you know what it means.

Every time it is windy, "Mom, the rainbow flag is caddywhompus again".

And you keep reminding me until I fix it.

You're solidly in the phase of development where you are learning constantly, trying out new words, figuring out how things work, asking questions, and wanting to soak it all up. It's kind of tiring as a parent, but so cool to watch your little brain develop.

You started riding your bike and are forever begging someone to take you outside so you can play with the skateboard or basketball or draw on the driveway with chalk. You love going to all the parks, although you've already learned that the best park is rocketship park. Because it is. Obviously.

You aren't a little baby anymore, though you still grab me by the cheeks and whisper in my ear when you're stalling to take a nap....

Hold me a minute.

And I always do, because no matter how big you ever get, you'll always be my baby. And you know that being adult sized hasn't stopped your siblings from sitting on my lap, so I doubt it will ever stop you either.

Try not to have any major injuries this year. I know that you think you are Spider-Man, but I'm pretty sure he wouldn't end up in a cast jumping off of stuff. So either don't do that, or work on your landings, Spidey.

Keep being silly, sweet boy. Keep singing showtunes and doing whatever that weird dance is that you do.

Keep trying to keep up with your brothers and sisters. Keep wanting to learn about everything. Keep hanging on to my leg when you need to and keep making yourself let go when it is time.

I'll be here, cheering you on from where you don't see, ready to hold you a minute.

I love you, Turkey Man.

Happy Birthday.

Oh, and go easy on the peaches. Other people in the house would occasionally like to eat one. ;)

Thursday, September 6, 2018

It's weird, being a writer...

I have drafts of several books. Some of them I have been working on for over a decade at this point. Some have been shelved, will probably never be finished since who I am now is not the same person that started writing them at all.

I have a few of them outlined in detail, was working on one for the first time in a few years this morning. I promised myself that when the baby started preschool that I would force myself to do this.

Even if the house is a mess. Even if there is something else demanding my attention. Even then.

I have been distracted for a long time. Maybe forever.

I'm terrible at finishing things.

I know that about myself.

I have all these stories that need to be told, and then the self doubt sets in. It's not good enough. No one is going to care.

I can't write this part of the story anonymously, so I shouldn't bother.

Should still write it anyway?

Can I attach my name to this?

Don't even try.

The best part of being a writer is the self deprecating part. Where you poke fun at yourself and your abundant failures and inconsistencies and flaws.


That was funny.

I'm literally sitting in a coffee shop because I know that if I went home, I would find something else to do other than write. I know this about myself, and so my books will eventually get finished because I sat in a coffee shop for a few hours at a time instead of mopping my floor.

I really need to mop my floor.

Part of it is the futility of cleaning with kids. At some point, I realized that I was fighting a constant uphill battle. Nothing will ever stay clean anyway, so if I need to do something else for a little while, I should.

And these books, they need out of my head.

The one that I was working on today is one I started officially writing about five years ago. I haven't looked at the drafts of the chapters at all in years.

I thought that maybe I'd start feeling different about needing to write this one, but as it turns out, I need to write it even more now than I did back then.

So maybe it's time this time.

And if it isn't, it can wait. Again.

I really do need to mop that floor.

Being a writer is weird.

When people ask me what I do, I'm always a little hesitant when I call myself a writer. I still don't feel like I deserve the title.

Ah, the nagging self doubt.


Gets up and walks away.

Wait. I am not home.

I can't just randomly start mopping the floor here, in a coffee shop.

I mean, I probably could, but then I'd get weird looks and get asked to leave or kicked out.

Guess that means I should make the most of this time and actually write. Dammit.

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