One Day I Will Rule the World

World Domination, Babies and Middle Eastern Dance

February 13, 2011


So I think the reason I’ve been avoiding you, sweet blogling, is that I’ve only had heavy things to say.

Somewhere I have a half-finished post with helpful suggestions for how to react when your harmless joke draws criticism for being offensive to a marginalized group. And then there’s the half-finished post pondering whether the not-declining numbers of women “dropping out” of the workforce to stay at home (in spite of higher numbers of women in post-secondary education) is linked with the toxicity of most workplaces to abuse survivors (a high proportion of whom will be found in the female population). And a post that examines the common othering tropes we tell ourselves in order to justify our apathy about others’ suffering.

Yeah, anyhow, I’m sure those all would have been great posts if I ever finished them. But they’re heavy, and touchy to write. But today I had a pretty sweet day and that actually made me feel like blogging.

I’ve joined a ’40 days of yoga’ program in the hope of fixing my back and also because I would like some Nirvana please. I’ve always kind of considered yoga a marker of my tribe (middle class mothers? agnostic westerners? Woo-woo 80s child from a hippie family?), so I was a bit perplexed to realize before the classes began that I had never actually taken a yoga class before. Anyhow, it turns out I love it and so that might have contributed to a little bit of end-of-week peacefulness in me.

Though I did, today, wake up with back pain and a foul mood. But then Ian talked me down and took me out for almond croisssants and shopping at the Habitat Re-Store. Hannah was out at her singing lessons with Ian’s mom, so we picked her up after that and then took her to Fabricland so I could look for cheap fabrics to enSpringen our livingroom. While I shopped around, Ian and Hannah played hide-and-seek among the racks of fabric with Hannah squealing and dancing on the spot whenever Ian surprised her from around a corner or whenever she managed to surprise him or me. Fabricland has a kind of somber atmosphere, I don’t know why. Maybe because it’s full of old ladies very, very seriously pondering what they need for their next project and they don’t want their concentration disturbed. So Hannah’s squealing and laughter felt a little like having an exuberant puppy at church or something. But she was so infectious and engaging, I don’t think I much cared.

After that, Ian took Hannah home to put her down for her nap and I picked up Ethan and Rachel from their dad’s. My mom had been interested with an excursion or visit with Rachel (who, we frequently discuss, could use some middle-child attention and some time away from her brother), so I dropped Ethan off at home and she and I took Rachel shopping at Value Village. Rachel is definitely at that age of admiring and asking for many things. But she’s also pretty reasonable. When we go to Value Village, if I intend to buy her something, I’ll just give her a budget and let her work it out. And she’s getting pretty good at putting together a pile of contenders, checking prices, adding it up in her head and then discarding or trading. I don’t know if shopping is a life skill, but I feel like her opportunities to make decisions for herself are a little limited living in the shadow of her larger-than-life brother as she does, so maybe it’s developing some referred life skills related to independent thinking and self-expression. And I felt very accomplished because I found an ugly old cake plate with a good chrome handle which I bought in order to repair the beautiful cake plate my aunt gave me for my old-birthday (that wasn’t necessary, but I sure do appreciate it).

After that, Rachel and I came home. The family had an easy supper of chicken fingers, or “meatless chick’n fingers” depending on tastes. We had a nice conversation about vegetarian values at supper as Ethan tried further to understand my motivations. As an aside it’s really interesting to watch him try to integrate some of my viewpoints with a pretty typical eleven-year-old moral determinism. For example, like many non-vegetarians, Ethan considers himself a Carnivore and as such, he could not give up meat. It would be cruel and unusual for you to require him to and he will not consider it because his carnivoreness is part of Who He Is. Which is fine with me. But then, when we were making supper once, he tried some of the meatless nuggets and declared, “Well I like these and I can’t taste the difference. So if it will make mom happy about killing less animals, I’m willing to eat these.” And now he kind of goes back and forth. Or the other day, when Hannah was playing with her leopard print glasses (still makes me squee shamelessly every time she puts them on) and she insisted that I try them on. As soon as they were on my face, Hannah giggled and said, “you look like a boy.”

I said, “well I’m pretty sure I actually don’t.” And then Ethan surprised me by jumping in to say, “Besides, Hannah. Even if she does, who cares? There’s nothing wrong with that.” I was left jaw-agape and thinking, “schooled in anti-gender-norming by my 11 year old son. Fucking eh.”

Anyhow, after supper, Ian put Hannah down and then was going to head out to a friend’s birthday party. So Ethan and Rachel and I watched Back the the Future II. Halfway through I offered to make popcorn, so they paused the movie and came to help me. Later, when I got up to refill everyone’s popcorn bowls (separate bowls because we were spread out all over the living room) Ethan went and got us all glasses of water. And on the way back to the couch, he watched me picking up bowls of popcorn and water and stopped to see if I needed help carrying things. And Rachel sat and cuddled with me on the couch – and it was casual, sincere cuddling, not the theatrical, playing-at-being-cutesy cuddling of late.

The forty days of yoga is six days on and one day off; and today was the day off. It felt weird to start my day without yoga, and I was complaining about my back a bit in the morning. So this afternoon I did just enough to limber up my back a little bit. And then I did my first unassisted bound lotus pose. Really.

But I’m excited to do a real class again tomorrow.

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