Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Sitting on my kid

I think one of the biggest disconnects between people who are parents and people who aren't is the babysitter.

Prior to Lotus whenever I saw a kid in a place the child shouldn't* be the thought ran through my head. "Why on earth can't they get a sitter?"

Now that I am a parent--whoo boy. Getting a sitter is hard as hell.

 First, there is Lotus' objection to being left with people she doesn't know. Once upon a time her mother did that and didn't come back so she is understandably worried.

Second, The cost.
When I was a babysitter I had a formative experience. One of my families (and the one I was a usual sitter for) paid me minimum wage when others paid me far less. The family stated that they believed that watching their kid was important and they should pay at least minimum wage for it. That means it is $15 per hour--which is expensive.

Third, finding someone I like and Lotus likes.
That's been the issue.
I haven't found that person. I don't really know how to look for her/him. I know I need to.

Fourth. The part of me that doesn't want to.
I am lucky as hell. I enjoy my kid. I work full-time now and don't see Lotus until I get home. I love playing with her, cooking with her, just being with her. She is fun to be around. There isn't a whole lot I want to do without her.

For those who read--how have you managed the babysitter question?

*By shouldn't be I mean the following (Please note this is for toddlers and younger as I have a three year old)
Movies with an R rating are not the place for Toddlers or below.  I remember leaving the movie Matrix 2 because someone brought their infant and toddlers who were screaming and likely scared as hell. 
Restaurants where there is a tasting menu that costs three figures or more. I do not mean diners and family restaurants.  Kids are, and should always be welcome there. Even places like Union Square Cafe or like establishments are fine if you know your kid and the kid likes things.  But places like Per Se? Why would you spend that much?

Monday, November 16, 2015

Vive le France--Microblog Monday

It is my favorite scene in one of my favorite movies.

In Casablanca, the Nazi's are singing their anthem and Victor Lazlo tells the band to play Le Marseilles, the French National Anthem. The reaction of the crowd at Rick's is electric.

But that's not my favorite part.

My favorite part is about 55 seconds into the clip--where the German anthem and the French Anthem combine to form a perfect harmony. I think it was the director's way of saying that peace could be possible. Harmony could be possible.

But it took an act of terror to accomplish it.

For those who forget their history, Germany and France are enemies. They reached a detente in the last few decades, but there is a lot of bad blood there.

If you click here you'll find the Brandenburg Gate in Germany lit up with the colors of the French flag to show their solidarity with France.

I'm sure that's not what ISIS intended--but it is what happened. And it gives me hope.  That in the depths of war--harmony is possible.  In horrific acts there is the consequence that two historic enemies can embrace.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Walking in the shoes

Mel had a great post about how when you are dealing with Infertility you are more empathetic to someone else who is going through it.

And I kind of agree.
Kind of.

Because there comes a point where it isn't true. When one leaves IF island on a boat (pregnancy) or a plane (adoption). Someone is now calling you Mommy. You are now dealing with all the stuff with parenting and they aren't. It can't help but cause something to happen, a distance if you will. If you're still on that island, it hurts to see someone off of it. If you're leaving that island...sometimes you don't want to look back.

I can speak of this from both sides now.

In the middle of my IF, one of my friends was going through it too. Together we mourned with every appearance of AF. Then, on my birthday, she called me. I had been having a nice birthday too. I had had a massage and was watching a marathon of crappy reality tv.  We seldom talk on the phone--doing most of our friendship online. When she called I thought something was wrong. She was over the moon as she was finally pregnant. She was doing her happy dance--and she should. I just thought she might have waited a day to tell me. I hung up the phone and cried. It was one of the worst birthdays because I  couldn't stop crying. She had other friends call me and they all wanted to share the news with me and wasn't I happy for her?

She had no empathy for me whatsoever. A few days later she emailed and said she hoped she hadn't ruined my birthday. I told her she did and she apologized. We're still friends, but I don't trust her as I did. I never will trust her to that extent again.

Fast forward a few years.
We had come back from China with our beautiful Lotus. My older sister is in agony. She and her husband had decided not to adopt from China even though they had come to realize that adoption was the only way they would grow their family.While we waited, and waited, and waited this might have felt like it was the right call. Then, after all this time I have this little adorable child and she's calling me mom. We went to a family thing and I was packing up to leave. I made a joke about the traffic going home, something like "I'm relying on a merciful Gd. We'll see how that works." I looked up and wanted to swallow my tongue. I gave my sister a hug and she turned away. I followed up, apologized again and she said that she knew it would be hard, but not this hard.

I try so hard to make my sister feel welcome. It is helping. Lotus adores her and in spite of everything I would imagine that Lotus considers my sister one of her favorite people--and her second favorite aunt. Lotus' godmother being in that first place berth. I still have to walk that line though. It was easier to be  empathetic when I was still there--but that is no excuse for me not to be once I'm not.

And then there is the dead parents club..... More on that later.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Microblog Monday--What is missing from my table

Someone just asked me for my mom's noodle kugel recipe.

I have to ask one of my nieces about it. Why? I loved most of the stuff mom made, but this was an exception. It wasn't a favorite. (Noodles should be savory, not sweet in my opinion.)

Well the person who asked was horrified. How on earth did I have Thanksgiving or Rosh Hashanah without mom's noodle kugel. It took quite a lot for me not to say, "We're having a lot more trouble dealing without having mom there, much less the kugel." I didn't.

I am wondering though, what is missing from our Thanksgiving--food wise, I mean.

Here is my menu.

Corn casserole
Dressing (made from Challah in the crockpot)
Green Bean Casserole
Roasted Veggies
Mashed potatoes
Sweet Potato casserole (for the four people who want it. but one of those is me so...)

What do others serve?

Monday, November 2, 2015

Microblog Mondays - Trust

Halloween was wonderful.

Lotus got so much candy in her candy pumpkin that she needed D to hold it for her.

She had a great time,

She got a bit miffed when we explained that she was not allowed to eat all of her candy all at once, but there was no tantrum. She's been very generous--sharing her candy and not getting upset when we help ourselves to some of the goodies. (She got Hot Tamales! I haven't even SEEN those in years!!!!)

So we're happy.

It makes me think of the Jimmy Kimmel challenge where people film themselves saying that they ate all of their kids halloween candy and watch the kids melt down. Everyone seems to think that this is funny as hell. I think that it is disgusting.

Maybe it is because Lotus is adopted and I am very conscious of building trust with her. I want her to be able to trust me when I say I will do something. I want her to trust me when I tell her not to do something. I think this is such a violation of the trust between a parent and a child.

These kids are going to watch themselves on Youtube later on. They aren't going to laugh. They are going to remember that their mom and dad violated their trust and taped that break for everyone to see.

We ask our kids to trust us, but the flip side of that is that we must be trustworthy. I remember very clearly a time when my mother broke my trust and it took a long time to get it back. I wonder how long it will be for these children to trust their parents again.