Bedtime meltdown

Bed time. Last night. Little man cuddled up next to me whilst I tried to read him a story. He wanted the story, but he didn't really want to sit still or be quiet while I read the story. But, I tried. Till I gave up.

He sees the pennant bearing his name up on his bedroom wall. Benjamin.
He says, "That's not my name".
Well, true, we rarely ever call him by his full name; it's always been just Ben.
(or buddy, or little man, or puppy, or sweetie, or stinkyface…etc.)
I thought that he might be a little confused about what it said - he's only 4 and as such, doesn't read. Yet.
So, I read it to him, spelling out each of the letters for him and telling him when I finished that Benjamin is his name - his full name. Little did I know that a meltdown was imminent. Just out of the blue.

He looked right into my eyes and said that he's, "no good at anyfing."
Big, big blue eyes filled with tears and all the heartbreak a little boy could have, came spilling out.

"I can't do anyfing, and I can't write my letters, and I don't know anyfing."


"I'm mean."

What?! Um, I'm stumped already trying to understand where all the - I can't do anything stuff - came from, and then he says he's mean?? Understand that he is absolutely NOT mean (*) and his abilities with his letters and writing are exactly where they should be for a 4 year old. So, I asked him who told you that you were mean? He said, "Armond." Ok. Well, one question answered. I'm thinking then that tomorrow I'll just have to go (hunt down this little twerp Armond, and who names their kid Armond, anyway??? and show him what mean is.....) have a little talk with little man's teacher and see what might be behind my baby's bed time meltdown.

*case in point: Just last night, we went over to the local playground to let little man burn off some energy. While there, he made friends with a much smaller and very cute little girl while on the slide. Little girl lost her flip flops as she was coming down the slide, so my sweet, sweet little boy knelt down, picked them up and waited for her. When she made it to the bottom, he put them on for her. Isn't that the sweetest?!? Is that the heart of a mean child? I think not! Case closed.

Brought sweetest hubby into the conversation at some point; we both gave little man mucho, mucho assurances that he was, indeed, the sweetest boy on the planet, and he could do anyfing, (that word is driving my spell-checker absolutely crazy, btw) and that he was very smart and we were very, very proud of him. Meltdown contained.

This morning, spoke with teacher for just a few minutes and relayed the story. Her opinion of his abilities mirrors ours; she says he's doing great and that of course he needs to work on his writing. Um, the whole class does! She rolled her eyes at the comment from the twerp. She did say that her "helper" in the classroom does have a problem with tact from time to time, and if she perhaps had said anything to him, she'd address that. She also had a plan to talk to little man one on one today to see what he told her. So, we'll see what the day brings.

Oh, and twerp, you don't know mean. Yet.

leavin' on a jetplane

Right at this very moment, the sweetest hubby in the world is in the air; travelling halfway around the world to Finland. Land of saunas and smoked fish for breakfast. He's scheduled to be there through the rest of the week, coming back home on Saturday. Little man and mommy are missing him already.

Godspeed, sweetie.

and the weiner is.....Tartersauce!

Yippee! The mailman has delivered my prize!

A week, um, two weeks ago, maybe? Anyway, yours truly was the big weiner on a blog that I sometimes visit. Ok, yeah, so I was randomly picked by a computer program, whatevah. Doesn't matter. I won. And my prize??? An ever-so-yummy-and-free-Starbuck's gift card!!
Got to connect with the author and creator, Kelly, via email. Hey, she's the first person I've ever met from Indiana! How bout that? And, she wants to be a nurse too - in fact, she's in school right now. Yep, she's obviously demented.
Thanks, Kelly, for the gift. Good luck with your dream!

Breakfast Plans

Time for bed.
Good night kisses and hugs given.
Snuggles and cuddles.
Lights out.
Covers up.

Stalling tactics begin.

"Mommy, in the mornin' after sleepy-time, do you fink you can make me some eggs and toast for breffast?"

Sure baby, I'll make you whatever you want for breakfast. Now it's time to go to sleep. Shhh.

"Mommy, when you make my eggs and toast, do you fink you can call me and wake me up and tell me it's time for breffast?"

Um, yeah, sweetie. I can call you for breakfast. Do you mean just call you from downstairs and wake you up? note how his diabolical plan is working - mommy has already forgotten that she JUST said shh, and go to sleep....keep her talking......
So, you want me to let you sleep while I fix your breakfast and then call you to come eat? must clarify plans, God forbid that I get a step wrong in the morning

"yes, Mommy-sweet-roses." that's my new name, btw. He's evil, I tell you......evil!!!!!

Ok, baby. Mommy will fix breakfast and call you to come downstairs to eat. Now, go to sleep.
You're mommy's sweet angel....'night night.

"night Mommy-sweet-roses."

Fast-forward this morning. 7 am.
Child wakes up first. Starts wiggling, but very quiet. hmmm. Could mommy sweet roses crack open one eye before being caught? Nope. Not a chance.

*smile* Whisper: "mornin', mommy", "can we get up now?"

Mm hm. You still want me to fix you breakfast and call you, since you're already awake and all?

"um, yeah, but, can you fix my eggs and toast and put it on a tray and bring it up here? you can fix me some chocolate and sit with me and we can watch my shows".
"does that sound like a good idea?"

Sounds like an excellent idea. So that's exactly what I did.
He's evil, and he has me brainwashed.


Ah. Um, so I have to take back everything I said about little man and this new found love he has with our new hometown.
Amazing the difference in 24 hours.

Left for school yesterday morning after much crying, whining, fussing, get the idea. Someone did not want to go to school. I'm sure the culprit was in his not getting enough sleep and just being overly tired (mommy relaxes the bedtime when daddy is out of town) - (mommy always seems to forget that she will have heck to pay for this little bit of insanity).

So, we're up and I'm trying my best to get little man fed, dressed, teeth brushed, hair combed and out the door; all the while listening to, "but I don't want to go to school!" and, "I don't like my school!" and, "I want to stay home wif you!"
He sees that I'm in my scrubs, so you'd think he'd realize I'm not staying home today either, but I guess that's too much to expect for him to put two and two together on this particular morning. Out the door, his feet dragging to the car; begging and pleading now (me) and into the car we go. I'm trying my best to understand and rationalize with him, when I think - compassion. So, I ask him if I don't go to work, who's gonna take care of all the sick people at the hospital that need me?
Completely quiet from the back seat. Nothing for a few seconds....but his wheels are turning, I can hear 'em. Oh yeah.

He pulls out the big guns.

"But Mommy, I need you."

Yep. He's better at this than I am. He plays me like a piano. I'm a sucker - but not today.

At the school, I come around to let him out of the car - only slightly whining now. He's dropped his bomb so I guess he thought a quiet whine would have the best effect.
Big hug at the car door and an offer to carry him inside made it all better. I did not cave in. I scooped my 40+ pounder up, along with the twenty other things that had to be carried in, and walked into the school.
Another big hug, kiss and an I love you in his classroom and I was out the door. He was fine.

Me? Not so much.

I guess we're here to stay.

I've had the pleasure to have a few 'deep' conversations with my little man in the car - either on the way to school, or on the way home from school regarding our recent move to the big city.
I'll admit, I had a few problems with this move - mainly the packing up of all our worldly possessions from a house we loved, leaving a town we'd come to consider home, leaving the most loving church 'family', jobs, friends, neighbors, etc. So, yes, needless to say, I had a tough time of it for a little while. I'm still working through it, day by day, but things are a bit better. (better living through chemicals? hmm, Tom?)
Well, the capper for me was the feelings I had regarding how little man would take all these changes. I had horrible anxiety about how he would be able to cope in a new school, with new teachers, new routine, new friends, new everything. I've said it mannnny times before that he's much better at new things than I am - he does tend to leap forward with both feet, never looking back; but I know how much he loved being at his 'old school', his old church, his old house - everything. So, with trepidation, we went forward, hoping for the best.
Back to the conversations I referred to above. Several went - not so well. Mostly a little boy who didn't understand why he couldn't go back to Ms. Joy's class; where his friends were. A little boy who didn't understand why we wouldn't be going back to our old house, our old church, our old routine. My heart ached for him when he'd say he wanted to go back, because some of the times, during the conversations in the car, I felt the same way. But, we felt that this was what God had planned for us, so like it or not (at times, still) we were in it for the long haul.
Fast forward to this morning. Sweetest hubby is out of town for the week, so it's just me and little man. We were running late, (as usual) and I was trying my best to make it through the neighborhood without running over any tennis-mom or dog-walking dad on my way to his school and my work, when from the back seat came the sweetest voice saying something like, "Mom, I like this neighborhood."
"I like these houses, they're pretty."
And, "I like my school."


First thing: when did he start calling me Mom? I'm still Mommy. I think. Anyway.
Second thing: Huh? When did he make this discovery? Was it like Bam! Everything is ok? Or, did it creep up on him, little by little?

Couldn't get any more information out of the little guy, he clammed up after the last comment. I guess I'll have to wait till the next car ride conversation. Maybe he can tell me how I can come to the same conclusions.

living for something

This is something I wrote a little while back on my myspace profile, just thought I'd pass it on.

Had two interesting patients in the two days I've worked this week. Don't get to spend an awful lot of time with my patients anymore due to the fast-paced nature of our department, but sometimes it only takes a minute or two to learn an awful lot.

This morning, I met a wonderful 80-something LOL (little old lady). Cute as a button; sitting up in the bed waiting for her colonoscopy. After checking her armband to make sure we had all the info correct and make sure we had the right patient for the procedure; my partner today, Kim, noted to her that she - "has a birthday coming up!" She smiled like a child and said, "Yep! And I've been married 58 years!" We were both floored....imagine, in today's day and age 58 years! Wow. So, of course, we asked her The Secret. She said, "Well, I just let him get his toys from time to time and it just takes care of itself."
I said we kinda follow that same rule around my house; then I told her my sweet hubby had just bought himself a new amplifier for his guitar - even though he had an amplifier already. She laughed and said, "Well my hubby just bought himself a 1987 convertible Mercedes-Benz".
Guess the older you are and the longer you're married, the boy's toys are bigger. Great.
Her colonoscopy was fine, by the way.

Yesterday, we had a man exactly my age come in for a procedure. Same scenario as above. When I noticed he still had his wedding band on, I asked him if it would come off. (you'd be surprised how many people can't get their rings off!) He said, "I think it will, yes, but....", then immediately started to choke up a little. The man sitting at his bedside said, "Hang in there, buddy" as our patient gave him his wedding band. I had no idea.

So, as we're wheeling him back to the procedure room he says, "My wife died 3 weeks ago".
He said, "I'm sorry, it's just that the last time I was here, I was with her." I took a second to peek at his armband again and remembered.
We did the procedure on his wife. We diagnosed her cancer. She found out that day she had colon cancer and that it was bad; and she found out soon after that, that the cancer had metastasized to her liver, pancreas and there was no hope. No hope.

She lasted maybe a month from diagnosis to death. He was having this colonoscopy for his kids.
His colonoscopy was normal, too. Thank God.

Barbie suitcase?

So, I go to pick up little man at pre-k yesterday afternoon, and find waiting beneath his cubby, a Barbie suitcase. With a note. From his teacher.

This month at school, his class theme "All About Me". The project for each kid in the class will be to take the suitcase home, and bring it back in two days with it chock full of anything that defines them: things they like, things that make them special/unique. Then, they'll share everything with the class. Little man was completely over the moon about the suitcase and the project, in fact, when we got home, he pulled it out of the car and said, "I'm gonna start now!"

Well, I've got ideas in my head of the things that represent/define him to me; but when we walked in the house, he went straight to one of the baskets under the coffee table (that I got at Target, and really think are the cutest......anyway.) and started pulling out toy after toy after toy, to fill his suitcase.

I think he did pretty well, actually, with the toys that he pulled out......
Spiderman mask.....if you know him, you understand.
Bumble bee.......from happy meal at Het*.
Train/locomotive......his sweet Aunt ToniMac gave him.
Spongebob......well, because he's the man.
White Power Ranger......newest hero and idol, thanks to Nanny.
Black Spiderman......old standby.
Bobble-head Star Wars creature from yet another happy comment
Red Power Ranger......again, thanks to Nanny.
Optimus Prime........because he's Cool.
Microphone..........certainly not for volume control, that's fer shure.
Bob the Tomato........another old standby.
Can o' Flarp.........because fart sounds are just the funniest thing to a 4 year old.
Super Cool Sheriff Deputy Badge.......because he rules the roost around here -truly.

So, as I'm sitting here going through this Barbie suitcase filled with these treasures, I can see in my head, the picture of him going through the basket and the built-in cabinet in the living room. Pieces and parts of toys - all sorts and sizes - probably hundreds of things that he's collected over the past 3-4 years. Most of the stuff he doesn't even play with anymore, but he took the time yesterday to sit and sort through it to find things that he deems as special enough to take to school to show his friends.

And in my head, I can remember times with each of these toys. And a little man. With an imagination and energy to bring each and every one of them to life; for himself and the luckiest mommy and daddy in the world.

*het is a shortened version of our name for McDonalds = HetMcDonalds. It's been HetMcDonalds since little man started talking.....we think maybe it's because someone once said something like "At McDonald's", but he heard "hetmcdonalds". So, it stuck. It's Het.