Tuesday, May 27, 2008

The Seasons, They Go 'Round and 'Round

First pool visit of 2008 today! If my kids ever express doubt that I love them and would do anything for them, I will point out that - against my better judgment - I don a swimsuit and venture out in public for their sakes each and every summer. Yes, I am willing to undergo public humiliation just so that they can have some good childhood memories. Our pool, by the way, is super-fantastic - the baby pool is a splash pool that goes all the way to 3 feet deep, so all the non-swimmers are happy; there's a sandpit for the little ones to dig in when they are sick of the water; and there is lots of shade and trees. I love our pool! I just hate the public humiliation part.

That said, sitting there today reminded me how much time has gone by since I first became a mother (16 and a half years, but who's counting?). Obviously, this pool is a magnet for the younger-kids crowd; and "younger kids" usually means younger (read, less jaded) mothers. All I could think as I sat there eavesdropping on their conversations was "Did I used to sound like that?"

Language Development in Mothers

Young and sweet mothers: "Would you like the lemon ice or the strawberry ice, sweetie?"
Old and tired mothers: "If you're going to fuss about getting lemon again, I'll eat that Italian ice myself."

Young and sweet: "Use your walking feet!"
Old and tired: "Stop running or the lifeguard will kick you out for the rest of the summer."

Young and sweet: "Tell that boy you don't want to share your shovel."
Old and tired: "Stop crying over a one-dollar toy, for heaven's sake, or I'll give you something to cry about!"

Young and sweet: "Use your words!"
Old and tired: "Please, for the love of God, stop talking!"

Young and sweet: "Do you want me to play with you in the pool?"
Old and tired: "Did they fill this thing with ice cubes this morning? Go play - I have a magazine to read."

Young and sweet: "I'm glad I wore my bikini - it's a great tanning day."
Old and tired: "God bless the person who invented the super-spandex tankini with the skirted bottom. Once I get that leg-vein surgery, I'll be all set."



Enjoy! It all goes by too fast!









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37 comments:

  1. Tee hee. Brilliant. I think you could do a thesis on the language development of mothers.

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  2. We just go to the beach, where the vast amount of humanity on display makes me want to gouge my own eyes out. I'm pretty sure you look fine, especially compared to what I face on the beach every summer. MadMad has a post about this, and she's far braver than I in describing the horrors.

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  3. amy - Yes, we go to a public state park beach; and I always make sure to set up our blanket near women far larger than I am. 2 summers ago, Larry actually leaned over and said to me, "That money for Weight Watchers? So worth it..."

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  4. I guess I'm in the old, tired mothers camp because I don't even bring the money for italian ice. I just let my kids watch other kids eat theirs.

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  5. aimee - Ha! I'm cheap, remember? We bring our own in a small cooler.

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  6. I have been a parent for 5.5 yrs and I ALREADY sound like this :)

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  7. I'm right there with ya! Last summer began my summers of reading beside the pool. Those swimming lessons for the girls were so worth the money!

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  8. I've been both these moms at the same time.....want me to tell you my secret? Have your first three kids while you are young and sweet..then have a whoops baby. You get to be the old mom to your oldset set and be the young, but a bit jaded mom with the new one! Thanks for the laugh this morning.

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  9. mary alice - Seriously - I heard someone use that "walking feet" comment yesterday at the pool, and I almost threw up. What's wrong with telling a kid to stop running? And wouldn't it be a little less confusing?

    And I forgot to talk about the kid who was dumping buckets of pool water all over himself and all my stuff on my chairs (that were not, I repeat, not on the very edge of the pool) while his mother took pictures. Um, lady? That woman in the pictures who is starting to look a little pissed off? That would be me.

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  10. At playgroup at the park there was a new mom who brought a whole supply of toys for her baby, then clorox wiped each one at the end of the playgroup before she put them back in the diaperbag. Yeah, I'm jaded. I don't clean toys until I'm trying to give them away to a new young Mom. Builds up their immunity, right?

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  11. Walking feet? Where do they come up with these things? Why do they come up with these things? I soooo don't have the energy for that. "No running" is about as nifty as I get.

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  12. My kids are still little but I definitely fall into the "old and tired" category. I would never be so solicitous, that's ridiculous!

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  13. That is so great. As someone who has had children over 24 years now, (yikes!), I have definitely seen my language develop. Sometimes I can bring out my inner (nice) mommy, but sometimes it's just way too hard when you know a stern voice and tough words will get you there so much quicker!

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  14. Oh, you nailed it.

    Also, as soon as my kids get over this weird cold bug they have right now, I'm going to risk some public humiliation myself. Sometimes we go in the evening, which is actually really nice--it's cooler and there are fewer people.

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  15. DestineyMay 27, 2008

    I just wanted to say thanks for making me smile. I found your blog via Dawn.
    We don't go to the pool, my kids get the garden hose or the rain. So I don't have to worry about a swim suit.

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  16. That's for sure! Very fast. Some days I thank God for that, though ;)

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  17. Hil. Ar. I. Ous. Seriously, I am old and tired. I snicker over those young sweet moms--they usually have only one child--and that one child is a napper. I look for them after the second child and no naps and they are (gasp!) old and tired suddenly!

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  18. Our sons will never appreciate what we were willing to do for them, our daughters will when they are in their forties.

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  19. You have to know I'm from the old and tired set... and I am laughing so hard my kids are breaching the office forcefield to make sure I'm not hyperventilating.

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  20. You go to the pool? We go rarely. When we visit mom, their town pool is free. It makes up for the exorbitant taxes they pay in their small upstate New York town. The kids go for a fun day in the spring with the schools. Otherwise, daddy takes a few kids in the evening once or twice during the summer. I won't take them all unless I have at least 1 other adult with me.

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  21. Well I'm glad I didn't wear a bikini to the pool too!

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  22. More true words were never spoken. It's funny how your perspective changes.

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  23. Loved your wisecrack on the Harlot's post today.

    Even better than thpse old-mom comments is what I generally resort to: that sharp redneck "ehnk" sound that translates into "no, not if you want to continue to live".

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  24. lynn - Boy, this blogosphere is a small world, isn't it?

    ve - We're all glad you didn't, believe me.

    mommeeof9 - Between the sand pit and the splash pool, it's a very easy environment to watch the kids in. It's the only pool I can take them to.

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  25. I agree with Mary Alice. You could take this post and turn it into a book. I'd buy it!

    With 5 blissful years of Mommydom under my spandex skirted belt, I'm already jaded. Really, REALLY jaded.

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  26. This is why I don't take time to read your blog that often - you make me pee my pants lauging!!! OMG that was hilarious! I'm right there with ya, sista!

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  27. That was superb! And dang it, I'm jaded.

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  28. I so belong to the second club of mom's. I vaguely remember for a VERY short period of time belonging to the first. Ahhhh, the good old days.

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  29. Sign me up for the old and tired side of the pool.

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  30. Screw the skirt - I just wear shorts with my swimming suit. Fashion, smashion.

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  31. I just had to add- The Sweet Empty-Nester Mom who is there at every turn with her saccharin (how do you spell that?) comments to the Old and Tired faction about how much we're going to miss this stage. ( This stage being having children of any age at home, apparently). They are so smug and proud of themselves for surviving it without being institutionalized.

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  32. Okay, how about this one:

    child calls from the office of the school nurse and wants you to come pick him up.

    young and sweet: I'll be there in a jiffy.

    old and tired: Do you have a fever? Did you vomit? Do you have diarrhea? No? Well, I'll see you at 3 p.m. dismissal.

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  33. Please tell me that when she said "I'm glad I wore my bikini" you stabbed her in her abs.

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  34. tootsie - That would have been a good idea; but the sharpest implement handy was a plastic sand shovel. I don't think it would have done the job.

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  35. What the heck is Italian Ice?

    This is why I quit teaching piano, I was wasting all my patience on other people's kids.

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  36. Hmmm....Italian ices? That's what we called them when I was growing up in the New York City area...in Philly, I think they are called Polish water ices...essentially, a frozen confection that is creamier than snowcones, but not as creamy as sherbet. It's the working class's sorbet, I guess. There's no dairy in them, just flavoring and ice and whatever they use to make them smoother (guar gum)?

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