have you ever had moments that suddenly transport you to another time? there's nothing obvious about it--no song from middle school crush gone by, no memory that suddenly arrests you--but suddenly you feel like you felt on some bygone day?
as baby girl and i strolled down the road near our home today, the first victory in what i can only call the "take back our life from baby-imposed cabin fever" campaign, i had one of those moments. suddenly, i felt, at almost a cellular level, like i did in middle school. as i was walking, and i realized it, i tried to decide what it was that sent me there. was it the particular slant of the sun? was it the walking in the heat on sidewalks, something like i might have felt when i walked home? was it a subconscious feeling of self-consciousness? was it the distractedness of worrying about baby girl as i was walking, perhaps how i might have felt about a backpack or some stack of books i was carrying?
i couldn't figure it out. but it was strange.
last night, baby girl slept for six hours straight, making eight hours between her feedings.
i woke up at 4, not sure if she was sick or just hitting this particular milestone in her development. something told me that she was fine, but i decided to wake her up, feed her, and then take her temperature. musicboy has been under the weather this week, so i wanted to make sure that it wasn't some sort of illness that made her less interested in food than normal.
sweet girl that she is didn't even cry when that particular invasion happened--she just sort of looked around, astonished and bewildered.
(perhaps the best reaction to that certain act.)
98.7. perfectly normal. and she smiled at me afterward, as if to say "mom, i'm good. i'm fine. stop worrying. now you know.")
so, two firsts down: eight hours between feedings (and most assuredly the definition of "sleeping through the night") and first rectal temperature taken.
that's parenthood for you.
the dean of rural cc called me the other day, asking about a student who had plagiarized two papers but who was allowed to rewrite the papers because i am kindness and benevolence personified. she ended up with a passing grade in the class, which wasn't always guaranteed, but her mom was raising holy heck (yes, i said mom) with the administration about her grades, apparently.
i could say a lot of things about this student and her mom, but i won't. i could say a lot of things about parents in general who choose to intervene to that degree in their children's lives, rather than helping them to learn invaluable life lessons about choices and consequences. but i won't.
instead, i will just say that one of the things that makes me craziest about being a teacher is that we are constantly guilty until proven innocent. it's as if everyone in the world thinks that we're idiots, out to be as unjust and unfair as possible at every moment. there's a fundamental lack of understanding that we are human beings, prone to our own frailties and particular weaknesses. instead, we get to be thought incompetent if we make a decision that someone disagrees with or that doesn't seem fair to someone else.
(on a somewhat related tangent: since when did the world begin to think life always had to be fair? the world i live in is FAR from fair. the sooner one realizes that, the sooner one can compensate and stop spending time and energy whining and shaking fists at the proverbial heavens.)
i will try to remember this when our little ones become bigger ones and go to school. please, let me remember that all teachers are doing their best, and that even if i disagree with him/her, they deserve respect and cordiality. they deserve to be given the benefit of the doubt, and they deserve to be supported.
i had an atrocious 4th grade teacher. he didn't teach. he assigned chapters out of a math book and said "if you have questions, let me know." but the line during math time was wrapped around the classroom, so i never got my questions answered. i went from being an a/b student to being a c/c- student. i didn't understand and, after a while, i just gave up. i also lost respect for my teacher. i mouthed off to him one day, and my mom let me have it.
i didn't learn until after i was long out of his class that my mom loathed him and thought he was a moron who should have retired the year before instead of sticking around and penalizing little children for his apathy. she worked VERY hard to bite her tongue and support him because she wanted to teach me the lesson of respect. you don't have to agree, but you have to be respectful.
i fear that has been lost. i hope i can instill it in my children.
i'm writing this down here. i'm putting it out there.
the idea of one of those "whoops, my baby is three months old and i'm pregnant again" is terrifying to me, but at the same time, i would be so like "YES! I AM FERTILE AS THE DAY IS LONG!"
only for moments, until the terrifying terrible terror of Terrortown hit me.
i mean, we would deal, but i'm also smart enough to know to be smart.
so smart we will be, but i think that's a strange sort of duality going on there in my brain.
sometimes i think people don't understand how somewhat cold email/facebook messages can be. after telling someone who had just told me about pumping 6 ounces something like a week after her baby was born and being seriously engorged, that i was unable to breastfeed successfully, she responded with essentially "wow. i guess if you have to do that, that's what you have to do. good luck with that. i was going to ask you if you needed breastfeeding tips...guess not."
you'll excuse me if i sort of took this wrong, while totally realizing that it was absolutely not intended that way. i just think this person had NO idea how a) hard the whole thing was for me and b) how her comment came across. i also think some people are better at emoting in writing than others.
i also think that i have probably annoyed certain people with my whining. sometimes it's fantastic to reach out, but sometimes maybe it's better to keep it to yourself.
and that's all i have to say about that.