As I handed out money and Metrocards and helped prepare supplies and ensure on-time departures, I had the feeling of having given myself, and my day, over to my kids' activities. Let's face it, even from a young age, kids come with commitments and social obligations and needs. We can try to fit all of that into our lives without adjusting much, but in my experience, the result tends to be frustration. There is parent frustration about standing around eating birthday cake with other toddler parents rather than accomplishing household chores necessitated by living with a toddler, attending practices and games and performances instead of working on our Great American Novel, and keeping track of kid belongings instead of organizing our own underwear drawers. And there is kid frustration when parents' parent obligations and plain old grownup obligations just don't mesh.
So for a number of hours today, I give myself over. There will be work,
and eventually, there will be household chores and writing. But for just
a little while, I am the breakfast chef and the ATM, the transportation
coordinator and the sports spectator and the cheerleader in person or
on the other end of a text or call. For a short time, I have given
myself over. And it feels good.