Winter Storm Toby: March comes in like a lion, goes out like a more ferocious lion

E’s kindergarden loves the phrase, “March comes in like a lion, goes out like a lamb.”  M must have learned that, too, but it seems so pronounced this time around.  I can’t recall learning that during my Southern Californian childhood, though I do remember learning idioms in third grade.  We even made a book of idioms.

Since English was not my first language, I was fascinated by these strange sayings like, “I’m all ears,” and, “The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.”  Even to this day, when folks speak in back-to-back advanced idioms, I feel like a fish out of water (ooh, that’s one right there).

Today, on this first official day of spring, we of NYC, ironically received an announcement from the mayor that all public schools were going to be closed tomorrow as Winter Storm Toby looked like it was going to be more major than weather trackers previously thought.  March is definitely not going out like no lamb.  RAWR!

Ellis asked to celebrate the first day of spring by going to the ice cream truck – sorry, that’s summer, but I like how he asked with so much hope and excitement in his soft brown eyes.

As tough as this East Coast weather continues to be for this California gal, even after 12+ years here, I have to admit that it is never dull as we await snow day declarations every other week.  I also love learning storm names though I know there will never be a Jihee.  Surely a Kevin and one of my kids’ names but never mine.

New season = new hopes and opportunities.

I hope that this new season brings about the official end to Olive’s first fever.  I hope that I can find more balance as I seem to be in a juggling and waiting to exhale mode with what feels like is only working or parenting or family-ing, as blessed as those things are.

I miss laughing with my face contorted and tears rolling down my face.  I miss the sun.  I miss being outdoors.  I miss just being able to step outside without all the winter gear, including a hat I dropped on the way back from school, which was kindly placed on a bush so that I could reunite with it.  I miss being able to get lost in a book without having To Do lists take over my mind, and then it’s time to go protect my sleep and rest like a responsible adult and parent.  I’m sure Kevin misses my being able to watch a TV show before I think of other To Do lists aloud.

I want more uninterrupted sleep which I’ve lacked the past couple months as Olive started to wake up at least a couple times through the night.  I want to meet up with girlfriends more than once in a blue moon so we can get our talk and laugh on.  Crucial for a more balanced and healthy me though everyone seems booked solid, including myself.  (That is what’s challenging about having three kids – even less time and energy after pouring out to three.)

I want to carve out time for more life-giving things like writing, reading, and just plain quiet so I can hear myself think without my beloved family in tow.  Some time where I am not crossing off the darn to do lists.  Untasked time.

It’s now past midnight so I better go to sleep.  Why stay up after complaining about such interrupted sleep?  Not writing has also made me feel imbalanced so I chose to crank this out before heading to the bedroom we share with our little Olive Tree.  Actually I’mma sleep on the couch so I can sneeze and cough freely.

Goodnight!

 

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First day of spring 2018

 

 

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friends’ baby shower – season of new babies

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the inevitable first fever and cold

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season of brainwashing baby Met fans

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season of endings:  Goodbye Toys R Us!  Olive will never know thee.

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Koreans wearing green (well, we could only find a minty aqua for one)

 

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The Dark (K)night

Micah is so obsessed with this cool Batman character that when we finally introduced “Frozen” to him, he kept singing what I thought was, “Let It Back, Let it Back!” instead of “Let It Go, Let it Go!” I thought, “Man, this son of mine done flipped the script and remixed the song about shame by saying Let the Shame Git Back On You. Should I be concerned?” Then I found out, he was singing, “Let it BAT, Let it BAT…” as in “Batman,” even rebelliously pointing at Elsa and Anna, scolding them, “No, you Batman and Batman!”

He even told me somberly with his signature earnest expression, slight drool pooling on his tulip bud mouth, on his smoove-skinned three-and-a-half year old face, “When I am Micah, people say to me sometimes, ‘you cute, oh you nice’ but when I am Batman, people say, ‘Who is that!? Cool! I feel safe, wow!'”

This struck me as profound.

I feel lost these days, even with the anchor of husband and two sons I get to hug and kiss in buffet portions.

I’d take “cute” or “nice” any day, but I am amazed by this little human’s assurance in his Batman identity that he can assume simply by donning his worn out, cheap Batman costume. His whole posture and countenance is different when he comes home from school and puts on his Batman garb, complete with sunglasses he added under the mask and Little Bro tagging along as a superfly Superman.

I wonder what my Batman costume looks like. I don’t feel like I’m enough these days, pouring myself out for my kids. I feel like there’s so much potential in this 37 year old brain and body that I’m not able to tap into. And it’s not as simple as “Well, why don’t you go work outside of the home then?”

In some ways, being an at-home mama is truly my calling. Not in the domestic duties as I get overwhelmed easily with all things housework but in the engaging my kids and gobbling them up and showing them affection and telling them stories for days. Plus, now that I’m a mom, I have to be more selective than ever regarding what type of paid job is worth being away from my kids. Can’t be whitefisting through some meaningless job just for that paycheck. Anyways, I don’t want to digress too much as this is a loaded topic, something I’m not ready to blog about.

Micah has also expressed sadness about the upcoming end of his school year. We’ve been blessed with a good first school experience. He said he wants to take his teacher with him and that if he gets new teachers at a new school, he will be very mean to them. It touched me as I recalled how quiet and serious he was on his first day of school.

It also made me think about how different toddlers are from us grown folks. Change scares him. He loves his current everything. His routine, his classmates, the objects around his small classroom, his teachers.

On the other hand, Mommy feels beyond ready for change. Almost idolizing it. As blessed as we are with our lives, we’ve outgrown our current life in so many ways. Many families in our ‘hood are making the grand exodus away to the ‘burbs for their next chapter. Makes me wonder what’s next for us, how we can clearly identify our individual and family goals, and how we can achieve those goals to break out of our status quo.

So, to combat worry, I am practicing mindfulness. It is hard! I wake up, pray for strength for the day with the kids, and purposefully pause to listen to the birds chirping outside the window. I look into my kids’ eyes as they talk or try to communicate with me throughout the day. I enjoy the warmer weather and our enchanting courtyard.

I even try to play mind games with myself, to trick myself into fully embracing and even enjoying the annoyances of life which persistently chap my hide. I try to change my perspective by reminding myself that I am blessed enough to have a parking space albeit three blocks away, and a laundry room we have to visit in the basement of our building. They will someday be part of the Kim family narrative, “Remember when Micah and Ellis were three and one, we’d have to go visit our car blocks away and make a little fieldtrip to the laundry room?” And it will make me appreciate what we’ve (hopefully) moved onto.

Sidenote: I have noticed that when trying to Change Perspective, the “At Least…” method does not work for me. “At least you don’t have bigger problems than this, you should be lucky that you only get annoyed by these mundane factors…” It makes me feel needlessly guilty and pissy.

What is next for our little family. I’m nervous. What if we don’t figure it out? Sooner than later please? What if I’m a loser? What if I never realize my potential? What if my husband doesn’t feel the same urgency I do?

Please Lord help me to be still and stop striving. To know that I am enough because You made me and therefore, I don’t have to grasp and claw for my worth. To know that You are Lord and take comfort in that. That even though it may not be evident that You are on the throne, You are. Please gift me with patience, the very thing I try to teach my own kids, while we wait on You for direction. Thank You for Your Word:

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;

Ecclesiastes 3:1-2