Last week, I lost my patriotic spirit. I didn't take our flag down or anything, but I was pretty annoyed with the oppressive regime I was being forced to negotiate with around here. Therefore I was dreaming of Canada. That oppressive regime I had to deal with wasn't actually comprised of elected officials and politicians. But it is, however, full of hot air and gas. That's right. Last week during the uncharacteristically wintry weather of Tennessee, I was being oppressed by my children. Sweet Girl and Little Man have both been sick for the better part of January and February, and when you add in four snow days in a row it becomes nearly unbearable to be the one adult responsible for them. During Sweet Girl and Little Man's Reign of Terror, I lost most of my rights. My right to eat balanced meals (or even sit down while eating), my right to wear clothes free of general detritus and bodily fluids not my own, my right to sleep more than four hours in a row, my right to shower, my right to SIT DOWN AND HAVE SOME QUIET FOR TEN FLIPPING MINUTES ALREADY!, all went out the window into the fresh snow.
It would have been easier with another adult. But the adult who usually helps with the parenting around here, is currently serving his country in a far away location. Great. In order to help preserve everyone's right to hygiene on demand, I had to give up my own. For the most part, the weather actually was bad enough to warrant the time off from school but Friday was another matter. The sun was shining and the roads had been cleared (because it had stopped snowing on Wednesday).....and yet the phone call came anyway. As I heard the recorded message prattle on about road conditions and dangerous conditions on some school campuses, I kept thinking "Really? You feel comfortable missing one more day of school because there's a shadow of some snow covering an inch of one road in the county?" Please. Doesn't anyone walkbarefootuphillbothways anymore?
What has happened to our American spirit to conquer all things that stand in our way? Did our founding fathers let a little cold and snow defeat them? No! George Washington even gets his own scene at the American Adventure in Epcot thanks to cold weather bravery! I was more than willing to bundle Sweet Girl up in her snow suit, pack her backpack, and give her a laminated map and Oreo (the first for guidance as land navigation is not her strong point, and because everything seems to get inexplicably wet in Sweet Girl's possession, and the second for company on the journey) and send her on her way to school Thursday evening (her legs are short, it's going to take her awhile to get there not to mention that I know she'll stop at Sonic for a lemonade) so she can be present for school on Friday. But I can't do that if no one is willing to embrace the American cold-weather spirit anymore and actually call school into session. Snow: it's more than a meteorologic phenomenon, it's communist weaponry. And it nearly found the limit of this mother's love.
Which brings up Valentine's Day. I feel obligated to mention something about love, as well as something nice about Sweet Girl and Little Man. While others have waxed poetically about love for a spouse/significant other/booty call, I'm going to keep this short and sweet (like my children today). I love my family. They are often loud, obnoxious (looking at you Joshua) and opinionated. which means I fit right in. I love my husband. He is also loud, obnoxious and opinionated, which means I get the opportunity to be right to his wrong on a daily basis. I love Sweet Girl. As we walked into school this morning, her little hand in mine made my heart melt. And while there is a distinct possibility that her hand will be in mine for a longer time than others, that does not make the love there any less. So what if we're on the wishing side of Someday a little longer? I'm used to the scenery here. I love Little Man. He is giggly and smiley and doesn't seem to mind that almost all of his toys have been "gently" used by his sister before him. His life is terrifically and terribly wide open, and so is my love for him. And, of course, I love America (especially when school is in session)!