We have been having the darnedest time getting the Kid to talk to us lately. "What did you do today?" "Nothing." "Who did you play with?" "No one." And so on.
While, on the one hand, an unscientific survey of my mom friends with children his age indicates this is normal, it's been particularly hard for me as I've been a little extra worried about him since he started at his new school in August. But how am I supposed to know how he's doing if he won't tell me?
I have no magic cure, but one thing that has helped a bit is that we've started beginning dinner each night with a joke. I can't find the exact list I printed off, but there's a similar one here. Then I put them all in a little jar on the table, and the Kid and Little Miss take turns drawing one each night. Like I said, it doesn't always work, but a little giggle does, generally, seem to break the ice and get him to open up a bit.
Of necessity, I've been thinking a lot this year about the idea of "mental load". And while I do think it's something we need to work on specifically across genders (see this article, which will terrify you if you have a daughter), I'm also trying to make peace with it, too. It's a weird line to try to find, but I thought this was smart.
Like, maybe we keep working to equalize it all as much as we can, but--on the days when that's too much work--maybe just acknowledging it is good enough? Maybe? Maybe not? I haven't decided.
I've also been reading this every few days and trying to remember it re: Little Miss. She's so crazy verbal that sometimes it's hard to remember that she's only two, with all of the (lack of) rationality and emotional control that entails. (Especially at bedtime. Dear lord, our bedtime....)
Lastly, is anyone else about to strangle the next person who says, "Look for the helpers," after a mass shooting?
In addition to the horror that happened in Las Vegas, five people were shot three blocks from my house Saturday night. Three of them are dead. (You may have heard Jimmy Kimmel reference it--yeah, that's right where I run most mornings and where we take our kids for ice cream.)
I don't want to look for helpers. I don't want bullshit "thoughts and prayers". I don't want to have to google whether it's physically possible for a bullet shot from three blocks away to have struck my sleeping family in what I thought was our safe neighborhood.
I want stricter regulations on guns, and I want them yesterday. At a certain point--which we've long passed, actually--if you're not working to fix this, you're complicit in these deaths. Fair warning, I am not going to be complicit anymore, and you can expect this space to reflect that.