Parenting

I No Longer Serve as a Floatation Device

Poor JPEG.  What is he saying in this picture?  “Help me, Mom, I’m wearing hair extensions.”

Well, we have four days left on our story, which Alex has declared, “Delightfully awful.”  Let’s grab our daily dose of Mags:

She didn’t know how, but these three refs were onto her and were gathering the evidence they needed to destroy her.  “They were about to blow the whistle on her crime spree, heh heh, pun totally intended,” she giggled maniacally in her head.  

(Now she’s punning?  Oh dear, this may be a new low.)

Last night in the car, we had this conversation:

Ana: What does this button do?

Alex: It sets off an atom bomb.

Me: It reverses time so you start aging backwards.

Our kids have no chance of being normal.  Although, normal is overrated and I mean, come on.  A button that makes you age backwards?  Like Benjamin Button?  A Benjamin Button button?!?!?  My kids were not impressed.

I was thinking about something yesterday at the pool that I need to tell moms of littles.  Right now you’re in the hard stage of babies and toddlers clinging to you in the pool and it’s hard and you probably don’t go as often as you’d like because just keeping everyone alive is difficult and stressful.

Freedom is coming.

There is a magical land in which unicorns prance, ents recite breezy poetry, and all your children can touch in 3-feet and swim by themselves.  Okay, maybe not the unicorns and ents, but the swimming thing.

I do not say this to brag, moms of short little clingers, but as a beacon of hope.  Your day is coming.  For seven years, I spent my hours at the pool with one or four children hanging on me at all times. (Why four?  I do not know.  When other people’s children see you in the water, they naturally grab on, as if you’re a walking life raft.  You go with it, because you don’t want to be the mom who peels off some poor, defenseless kid in the deep end and leaves him to tread.)

This year, all three of my kids can touch and swim.  It’s the weirdest, coolest thing.  If I get in the water, it’s because I want to, and I throw them around and race them and get into epic water gun battles.  I no longer serve as a floatation device, hallelujah and amen.

Moms of littles, someday you’ll be able to read a book, have a conversation with a friend, sit quietly and contemplate the meaning of life, and have a conference call on mute.*  And it will be glorious.  The pool will take on a whole new shine, a happy place where you don’t live in constant fear that a child will yank down your bandeau top and expose Mr. and Ms. Nippy to the world.

As long as I have plenty of bags of Pirate’s Booty and a full box of Capri Suns, everyone’s happy.  The pool has gone from a dreaded excursion where I’m schlepping forty-seven bags of floaties while carrying a child and trying to hold another child’s hand to me shouting, “Grab your towels and goggles” and “WALK-PLEASE-WALKING-FEET-AT-THE-POOL” as they race to the water.

Have I mentioned how much I love big kids?  The little baby in the tutu swimsuit is adorable but the big girl yanking up her tankini before she dives is fantastic.

Gotta go.  Headed to the pool.  Seriously.

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*No one panic.  There’s a lifeguard and we’re all watching and counting heads.  I don’t want to worry you.

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