So yesterday, I had one of those bad mother days. Get up. Wake children up. Drive 20 miles to summer school. Fight with son about going to summer school. Go to work for a couple of hours. Pick sons up at summer school. Drive home. Pack a couple of boxes for the move that is supposedly happening in about ten days. Wake up sons, who have spent 2 hours between summer school and football sleeping. Drive 20 miles back to town for football practice. Run errands, go for a walk, kill 3 more hours while the boys finish football. Find out son's phone has been stolen from his backpack at football. Fight with son about phone. Fight with son about life. Take other son to get hair rebraided. Get food for sons to eat in the car. Fight with both sons about life.
I came home to one of my new favorite adult books- LIFT by Kelly Corrigan. LIFT is a book of Corrigan's essays about parenting. It's short. It's a quick read. And boy does she have some great stuff to say.
About being a family photographer:
The trick to pleasing the client, I figured out pretty fast, was cropping out every nick, scrape, and bruise, along with the pimply parts, the second chins, and any flash of impatience or disappointment in either parent's brow. It's embarassing how much we want to idealize family.
About life (or parenting):
Trust me when I say there's a lot you can figure out as you go. You don't have to be Qualified or Experienced. Nobody really knows what they're doing, except maybe gene splitters, and even they'd probably admit there's an unteachable art to everything.
About her husband's reaction to things that could happen to their kids:
Real things? Things involving you guys (her daughters)? I don't think he can bear to consider them, so he lowers his emotional garage door and locks it from the inside.
After a week when her daughter was hospitalized with a life-threatening infection:
I came to know what a bold and dangerous thing parenthood is. Risk was not an event we'd survived, but a place we now lived.
A lovely read for any less than perfect moms you know…