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Browsing Tag: parenting

Quinlan Says Quarantine is Fun and We’re Just Going to Roll with it

Quinlan had to write a letter Monday for her language arts class, in which she described to an imaginary other student her first month under stay-at-home orders. “MOM. Mommy. MOM.” Quinn said this as she walked from the dining room, where she’d set up her dad’s old laptop as a work station, to where I was in the family room, writing on my own laptop. “Mom. Mommy? Mom. I need help.” I love my children. I really, really, like having them around. But sometimes? Quinlan draped herself over the arm of the couch so that her face was inches from my computer. “Mom? Mom. In this letter I have to tell the other student what I’ve been doing all month. How do I start it? What do I say? Mom. What’s my first sentence going to be?” I sighed. This was Quinn’s thirty-seventh request for help in the last hour and a half. I’m usually pretty proud of my patience with the kids, but that patience depends largely on whether my anxiety has taken the morning off (hahaha NOT…

Cian Challenging the Rules: Well, When You Think of it That Way

In the evening after the first day of school, Cian made an announcement. “I’m going to be very well-behaved this year.” He stopped and took a look around the table at each of us. A brief look of self-doubt passed over his face. “Well,” he clarified, “at least while I’m in school.” This, my friends, is my third-born. He came home last week all sorts of worked up. We were in the car after I’d picked them up from school, and he said, “I don’t know about this first grade. My teacher wants us to RAISE our HANDS before we talk. That doesn’t make any sense. If she’s close enough, I should just talk. She answered me the first time I did it. But after that? She didn’t pay attention to me!” I didn’t have to say anything because both of his sisters rolled their eyes and jumped in for me. Quinlan just sighed. “Cian.” Saoirse told him, “Cian. You’re in elementary school now. That’s how it is in ALL of the classes. Everybody has to raise his hand.” “But that doesn’t make any…

Loneliness and Tweenhood: But We All Shine So Brightly

Note: I’ve been struggling a lot with writing about my kids as they get older. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve sat down to post something similar to what I’ve written below only to cringe and delete the whole thing because…well, I don’t want to violate their privacy. It’s one of the big reasons for my long periods of silence here: I want to document these moments in our lives–but in a way that means my kids will still be speaking to me when they eventually read them. So please bear with me as I navigate this tricky new part of the road.  *     *     * Saoirse stopped me the other night as I was saying goodnight before bedtime. “Mom?” she said. “When you were in fourth or fifth grade, did you ever feel lonely or left out?” She looked like she was going to cry. I’d spent the day with her on a class field trip, and was able to watch her–quiet, reserved–sitting with or talking with just one friend at a time, maybe…