2 October 2017 - Ian’s jewelry from the Neptune Festival: Turquoise ring and lava rock bracelet with chakra and Buddha head.
2 October 2017 - Good things from my little corner of the world:
- Ian had a good week last week and got to pick something from the treasure box on Friday. He also finished all his chores and homework on Thursday evening so we had three blissful days of just chilling (and remembering to feed the dogs still).
- Ian and I rode the motorcycle down to the oceanfront for the Neptune Festival. He has a new helmet so that he is safer. We have new comms so that we can both listen to music and still talk to each other. This does wonders for making us both happier and super chill on the bike because we can communicate. I love that I can hear him singing behind me on the bike when we stop at lights.
- Ian overcame his feelings about the Neptune Festival. We had a bad time last year and he never forgets things like that. He was concerned it would go poorly this year but we did just fine.
- We got our customary jewelry from vendors on the boardwalk. I haven't worn rings in a long time and it was nice to try them on again.
- We made a delicious dinner last night of apple butter pork chops, sweet potatoes, and broccoli. Ian helped me cook it all and ate his portion happily. I really do enjoy spending time with him in the kitchen, and he hasn't cut his fingers off with the 10" chef's knife yet.
9 October 2017 - Me: “I wonder what I should wear to Travis and Christina’s wedding.”
Ian: “You could be Hello Kitty. Or a ghoul! Or a pumpkin witch!”
12 October 2017 - On Monday after work, I had Ian help me spread the cover over the pool. It's a 27' diameter above ground pool, so the cover is a beast. I decided to unfold the cover and place it on top by walking the 8" wide perimeter of the pool. It was largely a success, though I did have Daddy come back yesterday at lunch to help me adjust it and even it out.
Last night, as we were snuggled in bed about to go to sleep, Ian started crying.
"I don't want you to put the pool cover on the pool next year! I was very afraid this year that you were going to fall in. And if you fell in you might drown!"
I reminded him that I'd have to work hard to drown in 3' of water. And that falling off of a 4' wall at worst might twist my ankle or break my elbow but probably just spook us and knock the wind out of me. Death was a pretty remote possibility. I also reminded him that I'm fine. We got the cover on just fine. And it will stay that way until spring.
He sniffled and curled up with my arm to fall asleep.
It's so hard. His fears are so real. I get that. I don't want to dismiss them because it's negative help. And I don't want to feed them because dude it's a pool cover. I just do my best to speak calmly, remind him that everyone is fine, and that we're all super capable people who can handle the occasional fall.
16 October 2017 - Ian has slept at my folks’ house the last three nights. He would come back in the AM but just wanted to have sleepovers down there. By the third night, Dante was a great big weirdo. Whining, panting, shaking, pacing around my bed. I tried to make him happy but eventually asked my parents to bring Ian back home after school today. As soon as Ian came inside, Dante calmed down. They’re both fast asleep in bed. Here’s hoping for a peaceful night’s rest for us all.
19 October 2017 - Received a message from Ian's teacher at 7:14am that picture day is today. Ian was already dressed in whatever he'd picked out for the day and I just left him. This is why I don't buy the school pictures and instead pay for professional photo sessions of our family instead.
24 October 2017 - Ian and I had some great conversations about how things are intended and how they land.
On Saturday night, I told him at 9pm he needed to go to bed. I said that he had stayed up super late Friday night and we needed to make sure sleep deprivation didn't make him a raging asshole on his birthday, forcing us to leave him on the side of the road.
When we walked into his room at the cabin, Ian said, "Mommy, I didn't like that you said you would leave me behind." I told him that it was in jest and gave a cursory summation of hyperbole.
He said, "You threatened me, even if you were joking, and I felt scared and abandoned." I apologized. We snuggled for a minute, and I left him with the Noizio app playing train car sounds to fall asleep.
Tonight at Chick-fil-a, Ian walked up to our table after leaving the playground and said, "Let's go!"
When we got out to the car, I told him that when he says that to me it feels abrupt. He said that he just means that he's done and ready to go, but if I had told him I wanted to stay he would have just gone back in the playground to play. He assumed I was waiting on him and would be ready to leave immediately.
I explained that a better way to say what he meant was to say, "I'm ready to go when you are." or "Are you ready? Because I'm done." Those would give me a chance to gather myself versus feeling surprised and rushed. He *instantly* got it. "OH! Yeah, so when I say 'Let's Go' it sounds all 'Geez, Mommy, c'mon!' when really I don't mean that at all." Yep. Exactly, dude. There's no malice. You just need to see how it lands over here.
I was most proud that in both cases, each of us expressed our concerns honestly and the other got it without shutting down and getting defensive. In both cases, there was potential for tears and power struggles and upset. And look at us, all livin' and shit.