Well, Jupiter is asleep. She didn't have school today, but she got to visit kindergarten with Mimi. She got to go to recess and do kindergarten math. I have heard that she is very good at kindergarten math. This doesn't surprise me. As focused as she is on having at least as much as everybody else, an understandable perspective, counting is a vital skill. Then we went to the playground, but the tired hungry monster was trying its best to take over. Jupiter was doing her best not to let it take over, but I still heard a lot of "Jupiter did....." from her friend G. So we left the playground early so it would still be on a positive note.
We've been going to the Town Office playground once or twice a week lately. There has been an informal play group for several months now with lots of Moms, a few Dads on occasion, lots of brothers and sisters. Sometimes I call it the playground village. It's here that I first had hope, in the spring of last year when Jupiter was struggling mightily to get along at school, but could play nicely the majority of the time with her friends at the playground. I've learned that even when I'm dragging on a Thursday as the end of the week approaches, going to the playground village for an hour or two will revive me, even if I yawn nonstop for the first 20 minutes. It's here that Jupiter had learned a bit of what it is like to have a younger brother or sister as we borrow interactions from some of the younger siblings. It's here that Jupiter has actually seen how one can pay attention to and play games with a baby, and as a result she has allowed me to play some of those games with her as we try to fill in that developmental hole. It's here that, despite my inherent shyness, I have seen the benefits of being a part of a group where we all support one another. Some of the other kids play with me. Jupiter interacts with other adults besides me. I will miss it when the playground shuts down for winter.
Tonight Jupiter said "I hate you." Tonight I don't even think she said it to be mean. Or more accurately, she didn't toss it out in a fit of anger. It was more of a "lets see if I can get in trouble" deal. Sort of like putting the gravel in G's hair, throwing G's soccer ball over the playground fence, spilling a bunch of water out of the bathtub onto the already wet carpet. I didn't respond to her, just let her go to her room, closed the door, and went to wash the dishes and waited for her to make the first move. Which took awhile. Finally she called me, and I went in and she had decided to go to sleep, and said "Can you please (asking with respect!) close my shades, turn on my music, put it on repeat, and close my door tight." I just looked at her; and she asked again, more impatiently. I suggested that I might be waiting to hear something. She said sorry, and I asked her what she was sorry for. Sometimes she forgets by the time we get to the apology, or can't figure out which particular thing we're working on at the moment. She said "saying hate." I informed her that we can't say "I hate you" because it makes people feel sad in their hearts. We talk about feelings a lot this way; how we feel in our hearts. Sometimes she disconnects from her feelings in the same way she can't always feel what her body needs. Then, after this discussion, we finally got around to brushing our teeth.
But she didn't get to go right to bed. We had some rocking chair time first. Jupiter generally fights rocking chair time with a passion. Even if she truely wanted to be held, she would deny the fact vehemently. Sometimes I think the harder she fights, the more she needs to be held. Tonight was a token battle I think, she submitted fairly quickly to being held and rocked, although she did ask every two minutes when she could go in her bed. Sometimes we actually get to the sharing conversation we're supposed to have during rocking chair time. My goal is always to get her to fall asleep while we're rocking. That's pretty rare, but we're working on it.
We have a new cat. We got her on Saturday. Jupiter is excited about the cat. The cat is less excited about Jupiter, but has been amazingly tolerant so far. Tonight Jupiter was trying to poke the cat, who was sensibly hiding under the kitchen table, with her foam sword. But the cat let Jupiter pat her before she went to bed, and Jupiter came up to me with the big smile that means she's really really happy in her heart. I love that smile. On the way home from getting the cat, Jupiter said "Mom, I think we should name the kitty Autumn Leaf." So our Maine Coon cat is named "Autumn Leaf." Sometimes Jupiter amazes me with her ability to see beauty and verbalize it. Or choose a very poetic name for her cat.
The place of employment has blocked me from reading blogs. I wondered how long it would take before they did that. Now I have to read my favorite blogs (aside from Haleine's, who as the partner of an internet genius has a website which is not connected to a social networking site.) at home. So MimiX, I am still reading your blog, but I can't read it everyday like I used too. Same to FaerieM (who I doubt reads my blog, but hers is awesome. she is an amazing writer who evokes tears in me about every other post.http://creatingmyownlittlenirvana.blogspot.com/). And apart from this, it will make it harder to post my own blog, because I have to use "awake while Jupiter is asleep" time to read other blogs and catch up on FRUA happenings before I can post to my blog. But I'll try to do better.
2 weeks ago