Fundamental Differences

               7:33 AM Wednesday, babies will be up soon. Last night we didn’t go to bed until 9:00PM, we cuddled in the nursery, looked at counting books, I was so tired I almost fell asleep with the babies. Jack was still missing his second BlueBlue, so I told him I would go try to find it. I looked in my backpack, on the floor in the corners, in the washing machine and the dryer, nowhere to be found. I pulled back my covers to get into bed and there was BlueBlue, “ahhhh” Did Jack know it was there the whole time I was looking for it? Did he remember tucking it into mommies bed before we left yesterday morning? I walked back into the nursery. “Found it” I said. Jack just reached out his hand, original Blue stuck in his mouth, I could see a slight smile on his face as he took Blue from my hand, like I passed his test, as if now he knew I really was going to bed too. Everyone in their place. The more time I spend with the babies without breaks, without time off, the harder it is for me to see that space, that space which is my own. That space where I am doing “my thing” by myself, and they are doing “Their thing” with someone else. I just heard Jack singing. We’ve been singing “Baba Black Sheep” a lot the past week. I’ve introduced the Punk Rock version with air guitar and Jack loves it. He’s even started doing some head banging. Fiona is coming along, but I’ve realized she cannot understand the words of BaBa Black Sheep, or maybe she understands but she can’t pronounce them. I also learned yesterday she doesn’t know the colors, purple, pink, white, or polka dot, meaning if I ask her to point to those in a book she doesn’t. It’s mind blowing the difference between a hearing child and a non-hearing child. The amount of vocabulary Jack has been exposed to and knows is unbelievable. Yesterday after nap I had a beautiful experience with Fiona. Jack was still asleep, Fiona was sitting up sucking her thumb kneading her Blue Blue. I came in quiet and submissive, sat beside her and was quiet. I wanted to let her guide everything. After a few minutes she got up and gestured me to follow her, I did. Then she gestured me to pick her up, I did. We walked up the stairs, she pointed to the kitchen, “that way” she said. We went in the kitchen and she told me she wanted Cheerios. I got her a bowl of cheerios, a container of milk, one that she could pour in herself. We sat together, she ate her cheerios, it was beautiful. I saw her in a different light. I rarely get time alone with Fiona. She looked like a different person to me. So mature, so quiet! One of my favorite things to do is sit and not talk, just be.

               Yesterday evening, after dinner, Fiona and Jack ran to the glass door that looks out into the back yard. “Scary” they ran back into the kitchen. They wanted me and Alan to go look. It was a bunch on crows on the trees. Alan opened the door “This is what you do to birds, Shooo!” he yelled. “Oh no, I know why they’re here, I hope they don’t get the baby birds” I said. Alan whispered, “Shhhh” with a face of disapproval over what I was exposing the babies to. “Death” he says. “Two year olds????” It’s life, the cycle of life, It’s the most basic information about our existence as humans. If there’s anything they are ready to learn about through nature and their own back yard it’s that. Things die. Things are born. Bigger animals eat smaller animals. Watch out for coyotes or they’ll eat you. I don’t feel like it’s inappropriate information. Caterpillars turn into butterflies. Maybe he’s afraid I’ll turn them into vegetarians. Last night in the bath tub Jack and Fiona yelled, “Mama look” I went in to see a spider climbing up the side of the slippery tub, one leg in the water. “Oh no, I’ll save him” I got a piece of paper and a cup. “I got him” I took him out side and set him free. “He’s safe now babies” I said. “Free” said Fiona. “Yes” Then we sang “Itsy Bitsy Spider” with real meaning behind it, meaning with substance and visual reality. The babies are awake now and we need to get ready for school and sign class. I just had one last thing on my mind.

               Someone on Facebook had posted a story from Australia about a “living street” where the neighbors had planted fruit trees and vegetables all along the streets. They talked about how it brought the community together and they had more food than they knew what to do with. People were canning and sharing. It was a beautiful story and totally doable. I shared the article with my neighbors. When Alan got home that night he said I shouldn’t have sent it. Then I got a response from one neighbor yesterday that said, “Hi Jenny- We have no objection to the idea, but it’s not something we would participate in. I just wonder if we should be a little concerned   about attracting more people to roam around Baywood Ter as a lot of people already come up here and litter and don’t pick up after their dogs, ect. As a matter of fact, I was going to suggest we post a sign or signs asking people to pick up after their dogs and to not leave litter. Anyone think we should do that?”  I will leave you on that to contemplate. I feel I am fundamentally different than many of the people I know, live by, and talk to. It makes me feel sad, mad, and lonely.

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About Jenny Hynes

I am a painter, housewife, and mother of twins