July 26, 2015

Managing Children: July 26, 2015

I took another kid to sleepaway camp today.

What a different experience.  This kid can’t really quite conceptualize what this thing called “homesickness” actually is.  Oh sure, he loves us, he loves being home, but also he loves going away.  I was reminiscing with him about the first time I left him for longer than a few hours.  I’d gone to Toronto for a 3 day conference and I was nearly broken in two by missing him so much.  As soon as I got home, I rushed to pick him up from daycare.  I burst in and he looked up and … waved … and went back to what he was doing.

Ah, the love.

It boggles my mind when people think they can actually ‘make’ their children into who they want them to be.  At best it’s a fruitless endeavor.  At worst, you’ll drive yourself (and probably your kid) insane.  Of course there is worse than that, but I’m sticking with the range of normal, decent, loving parents.

While I was off driving, the younger two focused (as much as they can) on cleaning their rooms.  Solomon was ready to pack everything but a blanket and a pillow, so I had to talk him down a bit so he could accept that we are putting our house up for sale, soon, not moving by morning.  Clara, on the other hand, is a wonder to behold.

We purged a lot, and you’ll note the list for today is entirely from her room.  Nonetheless, it still looks like a bomb exploded in her room.  I think she is actually rather gifted in the art of expanding the limit of how much mess each individual article can possibly make.  Give her a length of ribbon, for example, and it will be tied around multiple clusters of purloined straws and interwoven between spindles on her bed.  True story.  Or take a half-empty coffee cup.  Seriously: take it.  There are several in her room.  She doesn’t even drink coffee. That I know of.

It is kind of epic in there.  We found Max’s missing messenger bag – complete with wet towel and trunks.  We came across an umbrella and her missing lunchbox.  There is stuff in there that no one has seen in years.

I have been advocating, in this blog, the notion of slow, steady, habit-forming de-cluttering.  I’m starting to wonder if the KonMari method might be the trick with Clara – just turf it all.  The problem with Clara, though, is that EVERYTHING sparks JOY with her.  With that kind of yard stick, we’d still have the sticks from the first popsicle she ever ate.

Send help.

Day 268 scorecard: 1340 down, 505 to go

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