Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Child care (again), Just the Girls, and Pity Parties

This post should really be divided into The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.

The Good
Hubby and I got a call last week from a Montessori for which Baby E has been on the waiting list. They have an opening next month, so we'll be switching into a program that has only 6 babies in the infant room - yay! This is especially good b/c I've noticed lately this one infant at her current daycare, who is...how shall I say...dominating the arms of the caregivers. This infant is older than mine, old enough to be standing up and taking steps while she holds on to something. She's a cute baby and all, but she's an only baby, and it's obvious that her parents have nothing in the world to do except hold her when she's at home. I say obvious b/c that's what she expects to happen while she's at daycare. If she isn't being held (by the teacher, the aide, or even ME!..she constantly comes crawling up to me, trying to get me to pick her up), she is crying - no tears mind you - or misbehaving in order to get some attention.

The workers have talked to the mother and explained that they can't possibly hold her the entire time she's at daycare, and they've suggested that she work with them to help get her child used to independent play for more than like, 5 seconds. However, the mother seems to be ignoring this advice and the effects of her child's behavior on other babies in the room. I guess I have no real point, except that I really look forward to things being better at the montessori, and by better I mean that I hope my baby gets a little more snuggly time of her own!

The Bad
Hubby is going out of town this weekend for a conference, so I'll have both girls on my own -- yikes! I've been a single mom before, but that was back when I only had one child. I'm completely dreading the Friday morning get-both-girls-out-the-door-and-get-to-work-on-time challenge. In addition, H (my 8 yr. old) has soccer practice on Thursday evening, a soccer game on Saturday morning, and I don't even want to think about how I might get everyone up and ready for church on Sunday morning. The fun doesn't stop there folks.... Hubby is going away again next weekend, this time with H, for another daddy/daughter camp out (last one for the season), leaving me home again with Baby E. Less stressful, sure, but still -- can I get a weekend?? Hell, I'd settle for a day just to myself. Am I a horrible selfish person for wanting this??

The Ugly
I didn't get two of the departmental fellowships I applied for, and I completely freaked out. Sobbing tears in my committee chair's office.. Ugly face cry. Ugly voice words.. Long story short, she helped me get over it, and I'm better... for now. I applied for another (non-department) award, and I'm hoping that I fare better with it, as preference isn't given to those who are well into drafting or who are almost done drafting the dissertation. Rather, the winners are chosen almost entirely based on the quality of their proposal (Interesting? Of the moment? Free of jargon? Clearly grounded in the humanities? Interdisciplinarity helps too).

I just realized that I don't take losing well. At all. I don't want to be "one of the best" students my advisor has worked with, I want to be "THE best." When I told my mom this, she sighed heavily, sounding completely exhausted with me. I told her, "I would think you'd be proud to have a child who wants to be the best..who isn't happy to settle for second-best." She said, "I want a child who doesn't give herself ulcers worrying about being The best." I kinda see her point, but that didn't make me feel better. And, as much as I want to throw myself a pity party, I don't know that that would make me feel better either. I'm not sure what would.

Also ugly
The fact that I have childen growing up in a culture that ignorantly clings to the right to bear arms while people die in senseless violent acts like the one that took place at Virginia Tech yestserday. I hunt. I come from a hunting family. But we don't live in the world where hunting rifles are only used for hunting. We pour money into the war on drugs, we pour mone into the fight against illegal immigration, yet we've done nothing to stop the rise of a gun-based culture of violence that takes more and more innocent lives every year. How stupid are we?


M said...

Glad to hear you'll be sending E to the Montessori school. As you know, S is very happy there.

wwwmama said...

My hubby's gone too. And I am on my way to bed at 9:30, totally pooped from being the single parent all week.
Pity parties are necessary sometimes. I've been rejected from a lot of grant and fellowship apps too, but I just updated my CV the other day and it actually made me feel better to see how long it is despite so many rejections. I think being driven and competitive is a good thing to a point, but you gotta let yourself off the hook if you don't win every time. Still, I'm a perfectionist too!