The entire world is apparently falling into financial and political ruin, but at least I'm finding a lot of reasons to feel good about myself—beyond even the pipe cleaner sculptures:
Yesterday Ingrid pulled out her new favorite trick: "But Daddy does it that way!" And we had a conversation about how different people have different ways of doing things, and this is the way I do it, so when she's with me we will do it this way. She thought for a minute and then said, "When I grow up I'm going to do things like you." And I was able to pull myself out of my sick little moment of ego glow and say, "You know, when you grow up you'll probably do some things like Daddy and me and some things in your very own special Ingrid way."
Iris had her lead level rechecked at her one-year appointment, since we live in an old house in the city. And it came back? One. One! After spending the summer eating sand and dirt! Clearly I am a fabulous housekeeper, swabbing down the floors many times a day with clean, wet rags.
The biggest pat on the back I'm giving myself (and if you are a single parent, feel free to throw up and / or slap me right now because obviously this is small potatoes in the big world of solo parenting) is about how things are going here, on day eight of fifteen (or maybe more) days of A being gone. Things are fine. We get up, we have breakfast, we have our little routine for getting us all showered and bathed, we do stuff, we weather tantrums, we procure and eat food, and it is all fine. I've had lots of help: in-laws, friends, the babysitter for that poetry class (which went smashingly last week, both the class and the scene at home). But beyond that it somehow feels like things have clicked into place. Like instead of barely surviving, at this moment I am somehow now the strong, clever mama I hoped I'd be, getting the daily stuff done and even—slowly—inching us a tiny bit at a time toward a world of more creative play, cleaner closets, and a creative life for me. Yay.
Feel free to congratulate your own self in the comments and I will virtually pat you on the back. It's Monday, after all.