Monday, December 31, 2012

Blackberry Spray

There are those special moments in the life of a parent where you feel like this moment could not be any sweeter. ... but most of the time you feel like the recipient of a kids choice award getting slimed in accolades.  This week marks a bitter sweet moment for me, my littlest sister is moving off to western Illinois to go back to school for her Masters in Recreation (she's been a middle school teacher for the past 5 years at a charter school in LA - they told her this year she would be her last one there so she's taking the opportunity to go in another direction).  I'm very excited for her, but also a little heartsick to know she'll be so far away for so long.  Anyway, we had a dinner for her at my mom's house over the weekend and she had written me a beautiful letter which I was reading through teary eyes after just finishing my meal.  Meanwhile, on the other side of the table, Gina was fighting with Genevieve to eat the fruit that was still being pushed around on her plate long after the rest of the clan had finished their dinners and moved on to dessert.  The particularly problematic piece was a rather juicy blackberry which Gina was requiring her to at least "try".  We're not the type of parents who make our children eat things they hate, but we are very much the type that are going to make sure you try everything at least once before you determine you do, in fact, hate it.  So Genevieve has finally been forced to stick the berry in her mouth and is chewing it like a cow on it's 3rd digestion.  I, meanwhile, I'm about halfway through this letter and relatively clueless to the firepower forming across the table from me.  Suddenly, and completely unexpectedly, Genevieve spews the berry (which I want to reiterate was VERY juicy) out of her mouth, directly at me, coating me, the table and the letter in a mist like spray of berry juice and pulp.  I was speechless (fortunately Gina was not) sitting in berry, juices dripping from my letter and my face.  This is parenting folks.  Someday, when she's about 23, I'm going to watch her load up a plate of fruit at some sort of a salad bar and I'm going to notice a particular blackberry sitting atop the pile.  I will simultaneously laugh and cry at the recollection of a long past incident.  One which summed up parenthood quite succinctly.

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