Danvers State Insane Asylum. My old stomping grounds. Danvers, that is, not the asylum.
Boogiemum's comment in my last post got me thinking. "I think I could write an entire blog on instances, like the one you mentioned, on things that my 3 kids have done," she wrote in response to my confessions of adventures in parenting my creative kids.
In fact, come to think of it, to a large degree, I have.
More to the point, I love doing it.
First, it records adventures my kids and I have at this time in our lives. Second, it helps me find a healthier (read: more humorous) take on the situation. Third, and most importantly to me, it is empathetic fodder.
Oh how I love to hear from the other parents who have been there, done that and lived to tell about it.
My husband and I were talking about the kids last night, and it struck me how fortunate I am to have so many outlets for connecting with other parents...how unbelievably valuable that is for me. I love my real world friends for it, and I love the Internet for it too.
The Internet is an awesome medium. Support boards saved me during my infertility crises. The people there were a price above rubies. Blogs---much the same and much different---are fantastic ways for me to feel both validated in my experiences and stretched in ways I haven't had experience.
In the end, though, parenting is (by and far) the biggest, hardest, most challenging, and of course, most wonderful, experience. Since it is the biggest thing I've ever experienced, commiserating with other parents---either by writing my own adventures, or reading about others, as well as chatting it up with friends---is probably exactly how I stay sane.
The question of sanity came about half a year ago, when I put up my post about my daughters and their fun with jokes and science experiments. That post won me a Perfect Post nod (thanks Jozet! Who happens to be one of those people who has contributed greatly to my ongoing sanity by reminding me to find my sense of humor about it all) and two questions from "lildb" of I obsess, a blog that I have bookmarked and love to check in on regularly:
two things; the first being, how do you stay sane? I'm not necessarily angling for an honest answer on that. the second thing: how will I manage when I'm in a similar predicament? again, no answer necessary, as I'm already screwed in the sanity dept
It's taken me a while to answer...but now I shall. I stay sane by remaining in good company. And I am in very good company, indeed.
The Beatles were on to something when they sang about getting by with a little help from my friends, and Hilary wasn't too far off when she said it took a village.
Is this the key for everyone? Perhaps not. But it is for me.
I have a lot of introvert in me and have been known to turtle. I also am an INTJ sort so have been known to overanalyze to death. Sometimes I feel like a balloon loosed from a little hand, floating powerless, to who knows where.
My network of friends can be a bigger hand that reaches up to grasp the errant string, and pull my loosed balloon mind back to earth.
They are great for this when I feel extra challenged, which is frequently. And it ends up being a pay it forward situation. I discovered this again, last night, out with my mom friends.
A new friend happened to hear me mention (for who knows what reason) my experience with Patience and her past battles with consistent constipation, potty issues from it, and a long dependence on Miralax which we ultimately broke. My experience with this is behind me, and her experience with it is just beginning. As we talked---she telling her tale and me, mine, providng as much support and reassurance as I could---I saw in her face the relief of, "Oh thank goodness...someone who understands, has been there, done that and lived to tell about it," that I have felt so frequently.
You find that it's not crazy, I'm not crazy, my kid isn't crazy...and you somehow are once again cosseted in the comforting familiarity of sanity, and confidence in, "We can get through this, too," and "This too shall pass."
I have ample opportunity to reach out, lots of story fodder, thanks to my children, who are often described as "very creative" and "full of lots of character" and "big personalities" which I understand are often euphemisms, but I have decided we ought to take these things on and own them!
Here's a quick recap of some of our adventures, which I have blogged about here:
The challenges aka Potential Lowlights
What scares me? Jokes and science experiments... in which my children play with a Barbie, creatively, and reveal that their idea of "funny" and mine do not at all coincide
In which I ask my childrenThe Dumbest Question in the World, Bar None, Hands Down, Ever, "What in the WORLD were you THINKING?"
When the husband and kids are home alone, in which my husband is left to his own devices, and must get the children ready and to school by himself, Persistence is arrested by the SPCA, and I am regarded oddly as I mutter to myself over and over, out loud, in public, healthy curiosity, not a sign of future sociopathy
Potty Experiment #2, in which my toilet obsessed children have more fun with potties, except this time, it's someone else's
Call Sherlock! The Great Powder Caper, Part Onze, in which my children decide a fun way to spend the end of the summer is by playing a very naughty version of Blue's Clues
No joke...another science experiment aka Glowing Mommy Moment #5382 aka Grills Gone Bad, the title says it all
I hate candy, or I Once Again leave My Husband and Children to their own Devices, in which I renew my vow to ban both spousal free will and candy from the house forever
In which I admit to an utter loss of sanity and discover the bribery of Twizzlers
The Rewards aka Potential Highlights
Poetry in motion in which I compose (she says, extremely humbly) an ode (which immediately undermines the aforementioned humility) to my daughter's dancing
Heaven, she said in which I display some of Patience's amazing thought processes that leave me gaping, in the dust
My daughter's haiku, in which I revel in the beauty of my children, and they revel in the beauty of the world around them
Confessions of a loving mommy...who doesn't love a sleeping child?
Pretty little death machine, in which Patience once again wows me with her amazingly complex concepts
Mine!, in which Persistence displays how one word carries a wealth of meaning
In which Patience plays a game of Miss Muffett
Persistence at eight months old
What are your big sanity savers? However do you stay sane?
copyright 2007 Julie Pippert
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