Entertaining a child all day is a grueling evaluation of mental fitness. I always thought that it took physical fitness and general health to keep up with the active youth. Turns out I was mostly wrong. It does take physical fitness, I suppose, though I’ve worked these past few years to increase my own for that reason. I didn’t know, however, that it took superhuman amounts of mental fitness. After a day of entertaining Balthazar, I’m completely fatigued. It’s the way I feel sometimes after a hard day at work (computer work). What does it to you is the constant barrage of talking. They require your attention for everything and that can drive you crazy. I now understand why parents get into the habit of using phrases like, “because I said so.” It’s just too much mental fatigue to come up for a reason for everything you say. I also understand why parents ignore their children’s blathering. They have to! It’s a self-defense response embedded somewhere in the recesses of our genome. I know it’s likely that I acted the same way when I was a child, so I’m appologizing now to my mother who was both single (mostly) and the direct object of my attention.
Well, yeah, you did talk constantly. At times I snapped and screamed, “Just be quiet for 5 minutes!” or “Don’t touch me for 5 minutes!” You never believed I was about to plunge over the edge into the great abyss of insanity and would either go away to pout (seldom) or just increase the barrage of verbal or physical assault. (Smile.) What goes around, comes around. And later, you’ll look back on these times as almost unenduringly sweet.
Love you (still),
Ooh, I have ideas for two projects that you may want to pass along to your friends at the Quinlan Arts Center:”Mime Camp for Kids” and “Junior Trappist Monastary”. Think about it – more quiet time for the parents and you never know who could be the next Marcel Marceau or Thomas Merton! My child is, of course, opposed to any such ideas…