Thursday, April 09, 2015

What is the cure for this?

"So, why aren't toe nails on the bottom of our feet to protect them?" my son asks in the car, the vehicle of all serious and not so serious conversations.  He must think my name is Siri and frankly, I don't know what I did without the woman in years past.  I hand him the iPhone and tell him to Google "why do humans have toe nails?" because he didn't accept my answer that they were to protect our toes.  His search reveals that toe nails might be a leftover evolutionary feature that, like the appendix, has lost usefulness.  Obviously, Siri doesn't paint hers, for my next answer was that they are decorative.

Aside from being expected to name all the constellations and know the names of all birds at the bird feeder, I try to picture my mom when I was a child, playing basketball with me.  [pause]  Nope, doesn't come to me.  My mom did not play basketball.  My son, grant you he is the only one left at home, thinks this old woman, his mother, should play basketball with him.  We live in a fairly rural area, no kids outside, and I'm evidently his playmate.  If I don't, well, there is always the computer and he knows that seeing him in front of it makes me simultaneously angry and guilty.

These roles I'm expected to play these days, it is interesting because I come from a different universe.  For example, when you were being raised, if asked to describe herself or what she "did", what did your mom say?  Mine would have said "housewife".  She was an excellent mom, don't misunderstand, but roles were a bit different.  A housewife ran the house, and children didn't have the same roles that I see today.  A woman or man staying home today to raise children are called stay-at-home moms or dads, not housewives or househusbands.  I'd never thought of it before until I heard a podcast on Fresh Air with the author of All Joy and No Fun, Jennifer Senior.  She writes about the interesting things that are happening in our culture as it relates to "the paradox of modern parenthood".

Our children, they are the focus these days.  It has become even more vivid for me now that I became William's pancreas and at-home endocrinologist after his Type 1 Diabetes diagnosis in 2013.   I read a lot, searching Siri and books for answers.  Unfortunately for those with Type 1, Siri doesn't have an answer.

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