Chased by foxes, and other toddler tales

Tess had her first day of camp today. She handled the dropoff like a champ, and was super strong for Sassy (the miracle worker who’s getting her there). The first part of camp is in the building; then they head outside. Despite her cousin Katherine’s presence and a love of the outdoors, Tess panicked. She screamed something about the foxes in the forest coming to get her and ran away from her class! The teachers caught up with her, but Tess was having none of that nature walk. I got a call from the office, and my heart broke. I knew mom/Sassy was minutes away and could get her. I knew people were waiting for me in a meeting. And yet all I wanted was to go scoop her up and find out what happened.

Today, being a working mom was hard. Sassy did everything right: she scooted over there, marched Tess right into those woods for a walk, assured her there were no foxes, and took her to play with her cousins. Still, even though the “village” keeps me sane, I felt like a crappy mom having to rely on ours on days like today.

Tess was tired and hungry, stressed and grouchy. We did not have a lovely evening as a cap for her tough day. And now she’s in bed, and like a good mom, I’m letting her sleep. But I just want to crawl in there with her, hold her and tell her how sad I was, that I couldn’t help her when she panicked. I want to make her laugh, and sing her her favorite songs.


Dave and I stayed up making an epic picnic for the next day: a giant pressed sandwich, deviled eggs, truffle oil popcorn, asparagus and cucumbers and dip, watermelon and sparkling juice.

I started the next day with a date with Remy. He was delighted and I was relieved. We giggled in the sunshine, as Remy pointed out his favorite truck (the one with fruit on the side) and assured me he’d never speed on a motor cycle.

Tess’ day at camp went smoothly, as did getting everyone piled into the car after work. Elise saved team Oplinger, remembering the stuff we forgot. The parental failure evening was followed by a night of family bliss, sharing a blanket and picnic with friends and our magnificent kids.

We chatted with coworkers, remarked upon Lilou and Griff √ā¬†experiencing their first orchestra concert, and laughed delightedly while Remy conducted and Tess hollered, “MAESTRO YANIV!” for the assistant conductor, their own personal rock star.

The kids held it together all the way home, telling wandering stories and commenting on the evening. Suddenly, yesterday’s trauma seemed insignificant. I know winning at parenting is more good days than bad, but it’s hard to remember that on the bad days. I’ll try to hang on to this one.

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