Saturday, February 13, 2010
Shot Through The Heart
Once again we have survived the charade of Valentines Day. 18 handcrafted hearts, one for every child in Anna's school plus her teachers. Sometimes I think this has to be the real meaning of 'No Child Left Behind'.
We spent the week cutting out colourful paper hearts, we glitter-glued the edge and Anna painstakingly wrote every child's name. Taj was a breeze but we had to craft an extra large heart for Aleshandra. I think Anna's was the only name that wouldn't send a spell-checker into a frenzy. Every name so outlandishly distinctive that Anna ends up sounding unique. I wonder what it's going to be like next year with two children in school. 36 valentines. 36 shop-bought hearts I can predict right now....
On the way back from school Anna worked her way through her valentines stash, carefully sorting those with jewels and candy from the rest. She handed me mine. 'My family' by Anna K. 'I love my family when we go for ice-cream. I love my family when we get to have candy at the park', the usual pre-diabetic fare. Her teacher had 'interviewed' each child and transcribed their words. Then I read 'sometimes my Mom scares me'.
Say that to my face little girl and I'll give you 'my Mom scares me'. There it was, in laminated perpetuity, 'my Mom scares me'. I'm wondering if I can just hide the heart, no-one need ever know. I can already hear LK saying 'no shit, you scare me most of the time too'.
I start to second-guess myself; the early-morning military-style leaving the house routine, the insistence on wearing underwear in public places.........I decide to interrogate. Hold the water-boarding. 'What do you mean by I scare you, love?'
"You know, you scare me, my teacher says Sofie and I play nicely, the other friends do too but we play the niceliest"
"That's nice", focus dammit!! "but I scare you?"
"Yes. When you jump out and go 'RAWR'"
Oh yay I think. Reprieve! But then I read the next line 'but she's kind of nice'.
So great, I'm either a monster or I've given birth to a politician. I wonder which is worse.