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July 13, 2001
a year ago
two years ago
three years ago

Brownlows Arrive

5:43 pm: I'm so glad it's Friday.

The morning went as usual, though Joan decided to bring Jet by when the time was over because she wanted to go to some garage sales before she went to go pick Alex up. That was cool. It's very different to wait for her to come, and it was kind of cool to be able to see her coming and open the door for her and Jet, who was sleeping in the car seat under a blanket.

Jet woke up pretty much immediately, and I took him to nurse and we had a good, long nursing time where I read a Tamora Pierce book and Jet napped and ate and napped and ate cheerfully. He eventually fell asleep and I tucked him in with pillows on either side and a blanket on top.

John then came down to say that the Brownlows were in Erie and coming in time for lunch. And they did. Jet woke up while they unloaded, and so he got to play with Isabel. He sat in her lap for a while, as she held him, and then the two of them went and played with Jet's toys in pretty much orthogonal ways.

We all shared sandwiches, finishing off the stuff they had in their van. They were doing the whole cross-country thing, flying up to Alaska, getting their diesel van with all the cool camping stuff. They met Tim Cahill up there, who was most impressed by the van. The story of that was pretty cool.

From there they got established downstairs, including Isabel thoroughly riding the train. Jet had problems nursing with everyone around, so I finally retreated to our bedroom, like at the party. He did just fine there, and then John and I worked upstairs with him for a bit longer, as I needed to just do one more thing. John and Jet played for a long time, and then it was time to nurse again.

When we were done we all went to Casa de La Mina. Isabel fell asleep in the car, and we were able to put her in her seat under the table. Everyone scattered around her and Jet got to sit in his car seat on one of the chairs. He played and talked for the whole time and watched us all eat our dinners. I tried something 'new', the crab enchiladas and they were made with fake crab, which was rather sad, and I didn't like them much at all. Everyone else, however, had more than they could eat, so I stole a little off of everyone else's plates and was pretty happy.

Jet was fussing pretty hard by the end of dinner. He fussed harder and harder, and even more in the car and then he was suddenly silent. When we got home I saw that he was asleep, so I tucked him into our bedroom, still in his car seat and he took a nap for about half an hour. He woke up yelling a little, and he latched on eagerly enough, but I was back in the livingroom to talk with folks for a bit, and Jet got distracted pretty easily. After twenty minutes he'd had enough and wanted to play.

Isabel wasn't having quite as good an evening. She was pretty grumpy after her nap in her car seat, and a lot of it was that she probably needed a longer nap. She was pretty tired, and had refused a nap before dinner, even after a bubble bath.

It was interesting to watch Deirdre and Paul with Isabel and with her mood and her two-year-old constant need to say, "No." and "Why?" It's a really hard job to keep that line of what shouldn't be done versus what one wants the child to do. We'll be there in a while, too, and it was just good to watch and see and figure out what we don't want to make habits only to find that out when it's too late.

I think, with food, the trick is while the kid might be able to pick when they want to eat, that they don't get to pick what. That it's just not question or a choice. Jet eats so well already, it's not something we should change.

And, in the end, it is still the whole question of just how independent the kid is. Isabel is definitely self-motorizing, she is also completely potty trained, and she can go and find things to amuse herself with. So she is very much more independent. That's very keen. But the same things that enable her to know that she is a person different than her mom and dad is what drives her to try things that are different than what they suggest or want.

Maybe. Though The Scientist In the Crib had some interesting evidence to support that theory.

It's tiring, though, to deal with; but being very aware of the fact that I'll have to deal with it eventually has given me far more patience for it all. Hopefully, we're making it easy for them to do what they need to do. The Dave who reads this journal fairly frequently wrote me to tell me that after all these entries about raising Jet, he's found that he's just far more relaxed and tolerant of loud and noisy kids as he's gotten a greater appreciation of how hard parents really do the best they can and sometimes it's just out of their control.

That was a very pleasant note to get. I know I wasn't very relaxed about other kids crying or screaming, especially in the confines of a plane; which is likely why I'm so unhappy when Jet is unhappy on a plane. I did try to help, like the time I'd brought my teddy bear with me on a trip and loaned him to a very unhappy little girl who was just wailing. The bear helped her smile and she played with him for the whole trip. Still, while I helped other parents, I was often angry about it.

Now I know why it just happens sometimes. Quite the brain change.

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