Where's the village?

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Bass Ackwards

What kind of a world do I live in where my four year old daughter feels the need to comfort me? What have I done to her life so that after I lose my temper and make her cry, and then I start crying myself, she gets the impulse to give me a hug and pat me on the back with her gentle little baby hands, saying "There's nothing to be sad about, Mama." And of course that just made me cry harder, because yes I have read The Ghost In The House and so I know that I'm forcing her to shoulder the burdens of adulthood too early by making her feel responsible for my emotions and wellbeing, or some such screwed-up/depressed/having-my-period/turmoil-in-marriage emotional reaction.

Oh, and? I'm letting her control her own TV-watching. I am on the right road to being the Worst Mother Ever. Worst Wife too, now that I think about it.


Saturday, August 18, 2007

Magically mundane

There are times I despair of the dajamou's TV habits. She's a junkie, no doubt about it, and the reasons are many and varied and destined for some other post. Meanwhile, I can blame all kinds of not-so-savory stuff on TV. Like the other day, when she told me all about her dream where the whole family went to a ball, and everything was in pink and purple. My dress was pink, hers was purple (dajadaddy wore the traditional black suit with brown loafers), there were pink walls with purple butterflies, a pond with pink and purple stones, and pink and purple rubber duckies floating in it. And I think to myself, where does she get this stuff? Sure, she watches TV, probably more than she should, but it's not like she is super-saturated in the materialistic Bar-Bie commercial world, since most of her shows are on public television. (Yeah, keep telling yourself that, mama.) But neither the dajadaddy nor I like pink or purple that much, so where else could she have picked up this horridly stereotypical little-American-girl love of those colors than on TV?

Come on, it's fun! Blame it on TV. Easier than taking responsibility, right?

However, there are other times when she dazzles me. Last night. I made hamburgers, because it's easy and I don't have to think about it until 30 seconds before the dajadaddy gets home. But I was distracted, so they got way overcooked. Not quite briquet stage but close. And she took a few bites and then gave it to the dajadaddy, saying "Here you go Daddy. You can have it. I don't like it because it's overcooked."

Overcooked!?! How many four year olds even know the word, much less what it means? Once again, television rears its ugly head and takes the blame. But this time, when it benefits me (stick with me, here) suddenly I don't mind so much. See, when there aren't any kid shows on PBS, her next favorite thing to watch is cooking shows, like QED Cooks or America's Test Kitchen. Currently the result of this semi-fascination is that she'll run to find me and tell me, in her So-Important-I'm-Out-Of-Breath voice, all about what she just saw made on TV and can we have that for dinner tonight? But I have a secret hope that someday, when she's older, she'll think, "Hey! I can do that!" And we'll have ourselves a gen-you-wine foodie in the house and I can stop making, or even planning, meals.

For that, I might actually be able to get cheerful about washing dishes. But don't hold your breath.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Should I worry?

Tonight the dajamou brought me a picture she had created. It was a large circle with blue and red swirls in the middle, with orange lines radiating out all around. She said it was a picture of a lion's brain.

I mean, what the heck do you say to something like that?