There are two parts to this post.
I wrote the following yesterday:
The husband ran the Boston Marathon this morning. Before the start, he sent me a photo of himself, smiling in the bright sunshine, surrounded by scantily-clad runners. I shared the picture with the girls, silently eating their toast. Miss T wanted to know where he got the lime green shirt he was wearing. Bun Bun managed a smile. Goldie, had she actually spoken, would’ve said ‘feh’.
To be fair, he’s run more than 25 of these damn races and even though they know 26.2 miles is a long distance, it’s obviously doable. They’ve stood at finish lines and watched thousands – big and small, fat and thin – finish without throwing up or dying so, yeah, good job Dad, but I can’t find my kneepads, Mondays kinda suck, and what do you mean I have an orthodontist appointment this morning? How many times do we tell our children we’re proud of them? Ideally, it’s something they hear a lot. The reverse – kids swollen with pride over their parents’ accomplishments – happens as often as I’ve seen pigs fly. (It was just that once, in the skies above North Hollywood. Oink.)
Look, I know parents don’t decide to have children to boost their own self-confidence. Anyway, the little varmints often have the exact opposite effect. (“Oh my God, Mom. Stay in the car. You’re so embarrassing.”) But every now and then, I secretly dream of accolades and appreciation for a job well done, of my children boasting to their friends about how amazingly cool I am. Even, “Nice hospital corners, Mom. My sheets feel great!” Or, “I read your post today. You have a way with words.” Instead, lying on the couch after running a marathon myself, Miss T will be quiet and sweet when she asks, accusatorily, “How long ARE you going to sleep?” In other words, she has her own agenda and it doesn’t make room for me and my screaming legs.
Other things I’ve never heard my children say but wish I had:
“My mom almost never dropped me on my head when I was little.”
“Have you lost weight?”
“You’ve got to come over. My mom re-organized the linen closet. Sheets and towels, perfectly stacked. She’s amazing.”
I was trying to figure out how to wrap up this blog entry and post it last night when I found this on the husband’s nightstand, from Miss T:
We can all say what we want about our kids, including that they’re reliably unpredictable and, forgive me, sometimes adorable. Nice going Miss T.