Friday, July 27, 2012

Oh, the indignity!

I used to think being pregnant and going through labor and delivery was the most undignified experience one could have.

I have recently revised this view;  going to the public pool with three overactive and feral children has to be equally undignified, if not more.  Our town's public pool is my family's Nirvana.  We spend quite a bit of time there throughout the summer, and it's the one place all three of my kids enjoy equally.  When we're there, the kids are typically happy; they rarely squabble with each other and they're worn out when we get home, which means they sleep late, which means I get some time alone.  

It's a total win, in my book.

So even though getting all the kids slathered in sunscreen and packing up a week's worth of snacks, drinks, and towels makes me want a nap, and even though the idea of spending an afternoon squeezed into my ill-fitting and unfashionable bathing suit makes me want an antidepressant, we venture out to the pool on a regular basis.

I then spend the next several hours trying to maintain some level of decorum.

And fail miserably.

Whenever Tommy is not in the water, he is running around, causing a stir.  Running at the pool is strictly verboten, so every time he leaves the water, several lifesavers blow their whistles and yell frantically, "No running!  No running!"  

Surprisingly, their entreaties do nothing to stop my preschooler from galloping around, occasionally looking back at me to see if I am in pursuit, laughing the entire time.  Between my plantar fasciitis and the piping hot pavement, I have great difficulty catching up with him;  I must look like I'm 70 as I lumber around the pool in pursuit of my demon spawn precocious cherub. 

Later, when he starts screaming because I won't let him eat the entire can of Pringles in one sitting, I have to bend over, pick up his flailing body and lug him to some corner so he can melt down in relative peace.  I'm really sorry to all the people I have unconsciously flashed while bending over.  I try to keep myself covered, but that stupid little bathing suit skirt is not up to the challenge of covering my ample derriere.

When Tommy's not screaming or throwing a fit, we enjoy playing in the pool with Charlotte and Danny.  The kids all love to splash each other and wrestle with me.  The problem with this is I am wearing a bathing suit.  Charlotte and Danny both have almost pantsed me in front of half the town after grabbing my suit while swimming.  And Tom has nearly pulled off my top a number of times.  No one deserves to be exposed to that sort of thing, especially at a family pool.  

And just when I think that everything has calmed down, I get whacked in the head with a foam ball.  When I locate Danny, he is laughing and gesturing to Charlotte.  After the dozenth time of getting smacked in the face with a soaking ball, I hear Danny yell triumphantly, "I got her, Charlotte!  The pig is down!"

Apparently, the kids are playing Angry Birds, and I am the pig.

All this to wear the kids out, so they'll sleep late.  

The indignity is worth it.


Check out more posts on comedy at the Spin Cycle.

Second Blooming

Monday, July 16, 2012

Manning Up

Last night at the pool, some kids were picking on Danny. I don't think Danny even realized they were being mean to him, but I couldn't ignore it.  It wasn't too big of a deal; I confronted the kids in an appropriate manner and it ended.

Though it was minor, this incident has been nagging at me for the last 24 hours.  I can't stop thinking about the little jerks who teased Danny; I have written letters to their mothers in my head, I've gone over the interaction, changing my words so that those kids would miraculously understand, and like, my son.  I stopped myself at least a dozen times from posting something about the incident on Facebook; as much as I craved the validation, I knew I should let it go.   

But, I can't seem to, because it's not just this one incident.; there have been others, including some involving the same kid. Also, I can't stop thinking about the future;  I've been consumed by thoughts about what lies in store for my almost nine-year-old son.  Danny's autism makes him very vulnerable.  He doesn't always realize when someone is being mean to him.  

I worry that he'll be bullied.  I worry people will be mean to him; I'm terrified he'll be rejected and heartbroken by his peers.........

I'm over at Hopeful Parents today.  Click here to finish reading this post.