My winter look: suffused with ennui
Have you ever noticed how winter is terrible? It’s just the worst. We got a bit of a reprieve this year, since winter didn’t really even start until January, but I have already had enough. I have had it up to HERE, where “here” is my windburned face, arranged in an unattractive grimace. At first I thought I might finally learn to love (or at least tolerate) winter, because Zach’s level of enthusiasm for winter was the same as his level of enthusiasm for just about everything else (i.e. high) and really, CAN one continue to hate winter when accompanied by a two-year-old who exclaims things like, “A ball! Of snow! It’s so WONDERFUL!” The answer is yes, yes one can, and as of yesterday Zach is now on Team Winter Haters. The wind was so cold when we walked over to get Ellie after school yesterday that he sobbed himself into an asthma attack and then coughed so much he barfed. (“Guided by sheer will and the love of his family, Glass must navigate a vicious winter in a relentless pursuit to live and find redemption.” <=== Plot summary of The Revenant, or a description of our daily 5-minute walk to and from school?)
I bought a hair straightener online and the product is wonderful (you just run it through your hair like a brush! it is super convenient because that’s pretty much the limit of the amount of time/effort I’m willing to commit to having nice hair) but even more wonderful is the set of poorly-translated instructions it came with:
- Please don’t put too much hair, if put more, in the control process it will slow down the speed, the effect is obvious.
- Fast Hair Straightener use a different direction, for personal use, with the personal habits.
- Do not self-transformation, demolition, repair the product.
- This product cannot be put into the fire or external heating.
- Do not wet or in the bathroom, wet water area places.
On the way to school this morning, Ellie asked me why boys don’t wear dresses. I told her they certainly could, if they wanted to, and that some do. She asked why most don’t (this was very confusing for her, because in her mind, dresses = awesome, so who would choose NOT to wear a dress if it really was a valid choice) so I told her, “Well, it’s a whole thing called ‘toxic masculinity’ and it’s because of something called ‘the patriarchy’ …” and she said that Zach looks really pretty when they play dress-up in her princess clothes, and I agreed, and once again I was reminded that when you’re four, complicated topics really aren’t that complicated. You smash that patriarchy, kiddo.
Stupid ugly winter
Sometimes when it’s -20C with the windchill and you pretty much have to coat your face in a liberal layer of vaseline before walking your daughter to school because otherwise you’ll end up with an unattractive case of windburn that will startle you every time you walk by a mirror (“why do I have a hideous rash? what am I allergic to now? oh right, winter!”), there’s nothing for it but to follow several of Maui’s fancypants resorts on Instagram. Last week one of them posted a photo of a beach wedding, with the caption, “Marriage is the sunset of love.” Er … I’m not sure if their social media person really understands what the word “sunset” means. Marriage Is the Sunset of Love is going to be the title of my self-help book for unhappy couples. Sample chapters:
- I Think I’ve Made a Terrible Mistake
- Why Do You Never Listen to Me When I Talk to You
- Mark Is Just a Friend, I Swear
- At Least Mark Listens When I Talk
- Kids, This Is Mommy’s ‘Special Friend’ Mark
I think I promised to tell you about how Zach broke my nose. Have I mentioned before that he has a giant head? It’s literally off the charts in size. A few weeks ago, he was sitting in my lap and threw himself back, at which point the crown of his head connected with the bridge of my nose. It was remarkably painful and I had some bruising around my eyes for a few days, but I never went to the doctor, because … sometimes I am not a smart individual. I finally went last week, mostly to get some antibiotics for yet another sinus and inner ear infection, but the one benefit of my possibly broken nose (it was too inflamed and swollen for my doctor to determine if it actually was broken or not) is that it earned me a referral to a specialist (which I have been requesting since last winter, most of which I spent on one kind of antibiotics or another) who will hopefully be able to solve my chronic sinus issues. When it really hurts, I tell Zach, “You broke my nose!” and he usually ambles over and, after announcing “I kiss it!” plants a moist one between my eyebrows. I think at this point I can safely say that toddler saliva is not the cure for a broken nose.
I picked Ellie up from a playdate last week and the poor girl was tired and brokenhearted from leaving her friend, as she almost always is after a playdate (that girl loves HARD) so it was understandable that when she said she would like a treat when she got home and Zach told her the chocolate was all gone, she burst into tears and said, “Don’t ever say that! It is NOT NICE to say the chocolate is gone!” and proceeded to sob for the rest of the drive home. I think that was Zach’s first introduction to one of the most important and immutable laws of the universe: don’t ever tell a sad girl there is no chocolate.