Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Mother Bear

Corbin has been at a great camp all summer, but I am ready for it to wrap up this week. We signed up for it with two boys who were in his class last year (but left mid-year due to horrid first grade teacher that I will tell you about later). It has worked out great, but in the past week Corbin kept telling me that one of these boys was being mean to him. Just little kid stuff, like saying he wasn't his friend or he wouldn't be his friend anymore if he didn't give him a potato chip (or whatever).

This boy has been his best friend since preschool, so I think it really hurt Corbin's feelings. Corbin was asking me if I could do anything, but since camp was getting ready to end, I just decided to let it go.

Of course, the first instinct is to step in and say something to the camp counselor and the kid's mom, but I feel like these are situations that he will have to face over and over as he grows up. I certainly remember going through issues with my friends growing up, and you get through them. And I feel like it teaches you humility, sensitivity and compassion. Plus, while what this boy was saying was hurtful, it wasn't over the top or physically threatening. And I've known the kid and his parents for years, and they are good people. They were preparing to move to a different country this week, so I tried to explain to Corbin that maybe this kid was nervous about moving and this was how he dealt with it.

So now that kid has moved and another boy (who had hung out with the kid and I guess was mean too) wants to hang out with Corbin at camp. Corbin told me this morning, "Now that L is gone, C wants to be my friend." It took every ounce of control for me not to respond with something like, "Well, tell him to bite it." Yes, very mature, mom. :)

I have to say that one of the hardest parts of parenthood is to let your children handle these tough situations on their own. It is a different story when the situation is ongoing (I would have reacted differently if it was happening at school for a prolonged period of time) or if it became a threatening situation. But I truly feel like going through these times teaches a valuable lesson growing up. If parents always jump in to make life perfect for their children, they will never learn that, well, life isn't perfect.

I feel like I made the right decision by not stepping in. I talked to him about situations that I had growing up when my friends weren't nice to me. We talked about working things out with friends, but also when to decide that someone who is mean to you doesn't deserve to be your friend. Hopefully, this will be one of those growing experiences for him, but it is hard not to get ticked off when someone hurts your baby's feelings. Even when he is seven.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Cheering up

It doesn't take a lot to brighten my day. Despite a rainy, icky day in St. Louis and the sad events of earlier this week, I am cheered by the new Jesse McCartney cd that I just received from a charitable partner who is looking to secure a sponsorship at an upcoming concert. Listening to the CD now and it is making me happy. Plus I know that Corbin will like it since he hears some of these songs on the radio.

Also, looking forward to a jammed packed weekend. I am getting my hair "did" tonight and having drinks with a long time friend who I haven't been able to see a lot lately. Tomorrow night Corbin and I are going over to hang out with another friend who is babysitting a boy a couple of years older than Corbin. The boys will play with the dogs, do a little Nintendo Wii-ing and have fun hanging out. Mama is planning to enjoy adult conversation (outside of work) and make knock back a glass of wine or two. We are spending the night since this friend lives almost an hour away.

Hopefully this will be a good, uplifting weekend of reconnecting with old friends. Also gearing up for our big vacation to Florida next week. Can't complain about that! :)

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

A little honesty...

I have to tell ya, I am really bummin' today. Do you ever feel like you hit one of those points in your life where you think things are finally beginning to work out, only to have the gods spit in your face, point and laugh (for the record, not talking about God, just some fictional gods I like to blame when things aren't going my way and I want to pretend like there is some conspiracy against me). For instance, you think that you have found a new great job at a family company - only to find out that said job causes you become this distance mother with a Blackberry chained to her hand, while your child just wants some attention and snuggles. So you leave said job after just 9 months (with your tail between your legs) and wonder what the heck that experience was all about. Then you FINALLY meet a man that you could actually imagine a future with - but you play it cool 'cause you've been down this road before and know how dangerous it can be to get your heart wrapped up in someone. Things go well...you begin to let down defenses and actually believe that there could be something there with this person. You have so much in common. You genuinely enjoy each other's company. You look forward to phone calls, emails and text messages in a way you haven't in, well, eight years. And then it blows up in your face. And you begin to wonder why you would think that something like this could work out. You wonder if it truly is, as they say, better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all. Not so sure about that. I was pretty comfortable when my relationships were really just a chance to go out to dinner with an adult and enjoy, but not spend the energy wondering about where this could lead. Sure, if you don't look for someone you truly care about, you will never find someone you truly care about. But then you don't spend five minutes of your evening hiding in the bathroom, crying quietly over a broken heart.

These are those moments when I have to remember to keep my eye on the ball. I have a beautiful, healthy child that I need to enjoy and be strong for. And, in the end, I guess it is at least comforting to know that I can feel this way about someone after such a long time without those feelings. Still stinks though.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Mmmm...beef jerky

Friday I was searching through the couch cushions for my mascara (found it) and come across...part of a slim jim. Ew. Corbin has decided lately that he likes beef jerky. The notion of that kind of grosses me out, but since the kid could use some extra weight on his bones, sometimes I give in and let him get it. But still, finding beef jerky in the couch is not a pleasant feeling. So I asked Corbin about it, and he said, "Oh yeah, I forgot I left it there." My response: "Corbin, this is why we can't have nice things." :) I also found three cheez-its in the couch. I guess it is good to know that if the world food crisis gets too bad, we can always munch off of the contents in our couch for a while.

Monday, July 21, 2008

What a way to start the week

So on my way to drop off Corbin today, I heard a news update about a stand off going on in Maplewood, just a couple of blocks from the school where he has camp. I called my mom to get more details. Apparently, early this morning, fire fighters were called to the scene of a vehicle fire. When they arrived, shots were fired from the suspect (not yet identified), killing one rookie firefighter and injuring two police officers. Because of the stand off, several roads near the school where camp is were closed. As I was walking him into the school and helicopters were flying overhead, I had already decided that I would probably take him to work today rather than leave him in the middle of all of this. Well, I guess the camp was told by the police that they could not have camp at that location, so it is being held at the recreational center, which is farther away from the scene. It is so crazy when things like this hit so close to home. Just a few months back, there was a major shooting rampage at the city hall in Kirkwood, Mo (just a few short minutes from where I grew up).

My heart goes out to the families of the victim of today's tragedy. According to Stltoday.com, he was just 22 years old, and had been with the fire department since August.

I often wonder why people feel entitled to take the life of another when they are troubled. Does it make you feel powerful to victimize someone who never saw it coming?

Returning to Blogosphere

About a year ago, I had a blog that I was not very good at updating. So this is my attempt to return to and embrace the blogosphere. As you may be able to tell from my title, I am a single mom to one brilliant and beautiful (I mean handsome) boy. This blog will chronicle my attempt at balancing life as a supportive, involved parent, while also (somewhat) trying to keep up some sort of existence as a singleton trying to build a successful career. Welcome to my busy life.