our newest member and the beat goes on

Our kitty (se llama Harris).

Today my friend Jen and I carpooled our kids and went for lunch in the park. We tried to converse while being besieged by each of the four children, alternatively needing attention, lunch, water, help with clothes, advocacy with other children: the subjects Jen and I attempted ranged from marriage, her political campaign (mayor of HQX!), parenting, our own upbringing, parents’ illnesses, employment, counseling. Later in her backyard the children strip down and play together mostly nicely and Nels, with a runny nose and feeling down today, wants me to hold him. I put my arms around him and Pearl Jam’s “Yellow Ledbetter” comes on over the stereo. The song is such a nostalgic one for me. My friend I’m with today we’ve known one another since we were eight years old and now our own children approach that age. I think we have an understanding that has only strengthened now that a few years of family are behind us and our second childhood looms.

Today finds me with a sick child, a tooth-dangerously-loose child, a diarrhetic kitten, and a busted checking account. A few minutes before I take my kids home from our playdate and I’m wiping the nose of one and the blood off another (Sophie scraped her foot playing in the pool) and it feels like I’m a magnet and things just snap to me. Children and pets and husband hang off me when they can. It isn’t at all uncomfortable for the most part, it still surprises me though. Motherhood, should you choose to take it on in any involved way, is endless, relentless, it never stops. It’s beautiful, though, and my favorite thing to do so far (well, the favorite thing I can share publicly). Even our little kitty gravitates towards Mama; last night as I drowsed in the middle of the night I realized that in between in the blanket hammock formed between my legs in the figure 4 position – the little kitty slept and purred, a tiny, insignificant engine. In the morning then: homemade bread toasted, eggs, ripe pear for the children; milk for our grown Blackie kitty (pissed off about little Harris); fresh water and food for the animals. Clean up the breakfast dishes – “Kids, go wash your hands and brush your teeth!” and set clothes out and pack a lunch and then after the lunch and driving and playing and pulling off clothes and nursing sad children home to clean up kids and wash their clothes because they got muddy.

(update 3:56 PM: Sophie just lost her second tooth; she reaches symmetry again for a brief period).

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