Friday, January 11, 2008

Another Study in Contrasts

My kids share some characteristics, but in fact they are all really different. I'm sure yours are too. Some days bring it out more than others though. So, without further ado, A Day in the Life of the Stimeys:

Jack, a stubborn enigma: Jack's been out of school for a couple days. You all may remember the car barfing and his exquisite aim. That is why he wasn't in school Wednesday. On Thursday I thought he might still be contagious, so I kept him home. He doesn't have morning preschool on Fridays, but he does have his afternoon special ed class.

But he didn't want to go. More than he usually doesn't want to go to school.

I have to say, I am really tired of making Jack cry by making him go to school. I am also really tired of making Jack cry by having to walk away from him when he spots me at his school, but he still has to stay.

I think he likes school when he's there. And I think he gets a lot out of it, but Jesus Christ, the kid rips my heart out on a daily basis.

Today he said he didn't want to go to school. It's really hard to get him to answer "why" questions, but after wording my inquiries several different ways, he said very quietly and in his adorably sad, high-pitched voice, "I want to play by myself."

I tried to get more out of him, but he just kept saying, "I want to play by myself." And he got more and more teary and looked sadder and sadder each time he said it.

Usually if he seemed that sad I would have kept him home, but he hadn't been to school for much of the week so I thought it would be good for him to go. I did tell him that he could tell his teacher that he wanted to play by himself. And that it was okay to do that sometimes. And that I liked playing by myself too.

We usually wait in the car at the bus drop-off spot for his teachers to come out. While we waited I was able to cheer him up considerably with a snowball fight game that is on my phone. A game that I had played exactly one time. A game that I had played one time months ago. A game that Jack vividly remembered, because when he saw my phone, out of nowhere he said, "I want to play the snowball game." He giggled hysterically until his teacher's aide came out.

I walked him up to her. In what is possibly the saddest voice I have ever heard from a human being, and with tear-filled eyes, he said to her, "I want to play by myself."

She told him that was okay and he went inside with her. When he got home from school he told me, "I played by myself."

Good for him?


Quinn, ravenous and stubborn: Quinn is a different sort. Here's an example of what it's like to take him to dinner:

This is him eating everything on the table that he can find. Including bread that he has dipped in the olive oil and pepper solution on the table. You may not be able to see from this picture, but his entire forearm was entirely oiled up. He would have been a hazard to baby seals. Oh, yeah, and he thought it was honey.

He also refused to put a straw into his cup, preferring to suction the milk out through the tiny x-shaped opening where the straw is supposed to go.

Every time Quinn sees a lemon, he tries to eat it. It's as if it looks so beautiful that he thinks he must be remembering the taste wrong and this time? Well this time that gorgeous, bright yellow fruit will be tasty.

After his first (yes, there was a second) bite, he did a full-body shudder and exclaimed, "Uh, oh!" with great urgency. Then he put it back in his mouth.

Later I suggested he take another bite because it was very amusing to me and it doesn't really hurt him, and frankly, if he's dumb enough to keep eating them, then who am I to stop him? After this energetic bite, he did another of those full-body shimmies and yelled, "Ouch!" Oh, I never get tired of Quinn.

And that meatball? He picked it up and ate it like it was an apple. And if you talk to him about it, be sure to call it a "meat snowball" because that's what he thinks it is.


Sam, a total jerk opinionated and stubborn: Ah, Sam. He's such a good guy, but he can go from the nicest kid in the world (sitting in the restaurant eating ice cream) to the nastiest (pointing at Alex emphatically and yelling, "You hurt me!" when Alex put him in a time out) in about 28 seconds.

Really, it was like he was in Salem and he was accusing Alex of being a witch.

Alex was sort of humiliated, because who wants to be in a crowded (at least it was outside) location and be accused, stridently, of hurting your child? By your child? (Obviously to anyone who knows Alex, he didn't hurt Sam.)

Believe it or not it escalated from there with a full-on laying on the ground screaming tantrum. We were aghast. And all of this because he refused to come with us when we'd told him it was time to go home.

Can you guess one of the characteristics they all share?


  1. "I want to play by myself." Ouch, my heart.

  2. We had the 'full meltdowns' and hate school for four and a half years and you have my every sympathy. For mine, the key was making his first friendship at school. Now he can't get to school fast enough.
    Best wishes

  3. We used to carry Bubba on the bus kicking and screaming and hitting in kindergarten. It's still not his favorite place, but he tolerates it. It, along with him wanting friends but being dismissed by the neighborhood kids, breaks my heart regularly. But then other things make me burst with happiness.

    Moosie eats like Quinn. East disgusting and entertaining. I LOVE the lemon dance. Absolutely love it. Not so funny with Bubba any more as he will hurl the lemon at the person across the room and take off their head. But still very fun with Moose.

    And both of my kids are moody. In love one second, angry and tortured the next. They get that from me.

    A shared characteristic? Corny, but they are all loved equally by their mommy? ;)

  4. Um I think "east" is supposed to be "It's" I don't know where "east" came from. I'm doing this new thing where my fingers type something different than what I think I'm typing.

  5. Yeah, I think it's what Ange said...thay you love them all! :-) BTW, Ange's comment about throwing the lemon just made me laugh. Remember Mrs. Doubtfire? "Ooh, it was a drive-by fruiting!"

  6. Okay, fine. If you're going to make me say it out loud, I guess I love all three of them a tremendous amount. There, are you happy? :)

  7. They all know what they want.


    You have such great kids....

  8. A meat snowball.

    I'll never be the same after that.

    Oh, and the lemon? Priceless.

  9. I love your stories of your kids. I just get such a sense of who they are from them.

  10. Nancy, I'm so glad to hear that. Sometimes (many times) I feel like I'm just weighing down the blogosphere with boring stories of my kids. Of course I think they're endlessly fascinating, but they're my kids. I'm glad you like them too.

  11. It couldn't be any other way, right? Perfect little people :)

  12. I have to echo what Nancy said. The stories really bring your boys to life. I can picture the whole scene with Jack, the not wanting to go to school, the sad voice, and his telling the teacher right away about wanting to play alone.

    Oh, and calling them "meat snowballs" might just be enough to get SB to eat one (or get it hurled at me).


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