Sunday, June 29, 2008

Gentle (and not so gentle) Friends....

Let me tell you a story.

Once Upon A Time, there was a young woman. This Lady was intelligent enough to count to ten without using her fingers, literate enough to read the newspaper without resorting to a dictionary, and not ugly enough to cause small children to start crying when they saw her.

All in all, she was ok.

Well, one day, the Lady met a Gentleman, whom she came to hold in the highest esteem. For some reason, quite a mystery to the Lady in question, the Gentleman returned her regard.

They were happy.

Now, this Gentleman was not a young toff, fresh cut from his mother's apron-strings. No, he had been out in the world, and had some experience with life, including a failed marriage, and children.

Three children.

The Lady, while she was fond of young people, and enjoyed them immensely, had very little experience with this many children, and being their primary guardian, for any appreciable length of time.

Circumstances conspired, as circumstances tend to do, to throw her into that position with the Gentleman's children, for a period of three days.

The first day, they had fun. Although the Lady wasn't feeling entirely well, she had enough activities to keep them entertained, and they had a good day.

The second day, they had great fun, visiting the park, and taking a long walk on the hiking trail. The Lady pointed out various natural wonders, and small creatures, for the children to gaze upon.

The third day, well. The Lady was never certain precisely what started it all off, but the third day was Hell On Earth, with the middle child.

Keeping in mind that the middle child has a minor developmental disadvantage, effecting his emotions far more than his intelligence, the Lady attempted to be firm, but compassionate.

As the day wore on, her compassion, however, faded. If the Lady had been faced only with this child, she would have been fine. Alas, there were two other children to care for, and all were running our fair Lady ragged.

At the end of the third day, when the Gentleman returned from his labors, the Lady beseeched him, "Darling Gentleman, is there any possible way that another could care for your delightful offspring, soon? For truly, though I care a great deal about them, I have not had the experience nor the training to be prepared for such circumstances as have recently been common. I do not wish to say that I refuse to care for your precocious young ones, please do not mistake me! I simply mean that, as a full time care-giver, I am not, yet, fully developed. Some period of adjustment and mutual learning is necessary, for the children's well being, and for my own."

To which the Gentleman replied: "I'm surprised you lasted three days!"

Ya'll, I am not cut out to be a house-mother.



Snigglefrits said...

I know where you're coming from. I had a 5 month old when I met the current husband. He had a 7 year old and a 13 year old. Instant multi-motherhood is the pits. Some days are just begging for Dimetapp cocktails to be served with breakfast. ;)

Bill said...

The Lady should be congratulated for doing so well, and having such a good heart.

Look at it this way, at the end of three days, there were still the same number of children, and lady and gentleman didn't hate each other, or come to blows.
Sounds good to me!

Pappy said...

I have faith in you. I believe you can handle whatever needs to be done.

Anonymous said...

Benadryl, closets and veiled threats work on such adventures. Of course, there's the CPS and possibility of therapy in the future, but it's all in a days work.;)


Last Chance Safari Company said...

I too have a young women in waiting who is contemplating such an adventure, the young woman is my daughter, whom I have cautioned that taking some one else's young 'uns under her wing brings it's own set of consequences and rewards. but an experience is an experience and my granny was fond of saying "what doesn't kill us makes us stronger"... coourse she spent some time in the nut farm

Sean said...

Farmgirl, I am impressed beyond words with your putting in the three days work trust me - the most amazing thing I've learned as a parent is how incredibly complex and consuming taking care of children is and they are mine - not anothers.

As others said - the fact that you and he are still on terms is a good sign - take it as it comes, and now you know a challenge to face ahead & can figure out what you are up to.

Like they say about eating the elephant - one bite at a time...