A milestone happened in our house on Tuesday night. M rolled over for the first time! All babies eventually turn over, and milestones are meaningful for every single one of them. I get that. This moment holds something more to me, though. O has had gross and fine motor delays for much of his life, starting from when he was very young. PT and OT have been a part of his journey (and mine — there have been many, many, many appointments). On paper, he’s still quite a bit “behind” for his age based on what other kids of a similar age can “typically” do. In time, he’ll get there. I have long felt mom guilt over his delays, however. Many a time I have wondered if my well intentioned parenting choices caused them. We didn’t really do tummy time as I didn’t believe in pushing him to be in positions he couldn’t get into himself. I let him be the lead, and I continue to do so to this day. Eventually, we found out he had low muscle tone, and that it was likely the culprit. But, despite knowing that, my anxiety doesn’t let me hear it. I don’t want that same journey for M. I don’t want those same struggles. So, I keep doing with her all that I hardly did with O… as if in some kind of hail mary attempt to avoid it. But, as hard as I try (and try do I ever), her tolerance for it is achingly minimal. Many a day she makes it happily on her tummy for less minutes that I can count on one hand. This, of course, has lead my worries to be convinced we are again on the same trajectory. And then on Tuesday she just rolled over out of the blue, as if it was the world telling me to calm the hell down. I hear you, world. I hear you. She’s got this. Happy five months, sweet girl. 💚
Due to the ongoing/never-ending state of the world and my recent foray into #kidsbookstagram, I’ve been taking a MUCH closer look at the collection of books I have amassed for my children. In that looking, and to my shame, I have noticed something. The majority of our collection gets a FAILING grade on diversity and inclusion. I could blame this on the fact that 95% of the books we own are second hand. Furthermore, 90% have come from thrift stores like Value Village and Talize. In those instances, you pretty much get what you get. But, for the other 5% I purchased second-hand online, the same cannot be said. What it truly boils down to is this, however: I come to this realization in a position of privilege. As a white person, I’ve never had to sit down and ponder if there were enough books in our collection that represent us. I’ve never had to purposefully purchase or borrow books that represent us. White people hold this position of power. We are already in every book of nearly every type — to the point of over-saturation. People of differing colour, beliefs, abilities, sex, gender, sexual orientations – are not. All of this were things I already knew. But, did knowing it change or effect my children’s book collection? Nope. ‘Cause as a white person, these are all taken for granted luxuries of our hegemonic identity. My beliefs in a socially justice world may be strong, and I have been strongly educated as such (thanks, @douglascollege and @capilanou) but I still have so so SO much more work to do — both on myself, and in the raising of my children. Part of this is reexamining the books we own, the books were read, and the conversations that come from these books. I humbly accept this moment of learning, and am committed to making a change.
Thanks, @nwplibrary, in helping me take a first step forward today.
I still love board books (and #kidlit in general!).⠀⠀ ⠀⠀ Why? Here’s the history.
The first board book in our collection was purchased around five and a half years ago. In a thrift store and pregnant at the time with O, I came across the classic, Where’s Spot, and knew that I HAD to buy it. As an early childhood educator, I had seen first-hand how much joy Eric Hill brought to children in those pages and the magic hidden below the flaps, waiting to be lifted. The hunt and success of finding Spot was always such a celebrated ending, and one that brought smiles to all children alike. ⠀⠀ ⠀⠀ As an avid reader and book appreciator, it also dawned on me then and there how much I wanted to pass that love on to O. So, over the years, one board book turned into ten, fifty, one hundred, and two hundred. I’ve lost count at how many we’re at now. The bonding experience through board books with my him has been incredible, however, and the structure of board books got me hooked. Sturdy, colorful, strong and meaningful, board books became a treasured part of the fabric of my relationship with my child, and followed us everywhere we went. ⠀⠀ ⠀⠀ O is now nearly at the age of moving past board books now (*sad sigs!*). This past August I had M, however, which means at least another five years of board books to bond over, fall in love with together, and learn through. Luckily this means for me all the more opportunities to scavenge thrift stores for new and great (board book) finds, and opportunities to again reminisce with my children over my favourites. Some may say the birth of this second child was serendipitously timed. ;)⠀⠀ ⠀⠀ There may or may not be more on this in the future, here in this blog. If there is and starts to be, now you know why!
I am now working from home. My work is navigating us doing our jobs remotely for the first time ever, as I don’t think they ever thought it would get to this stage. It’s a bit of a mess, but I’m home.
D is also working from home. It’s an easier feat for him, thankfully.
We are additionally keeping O home with us until the shit storm that is covid19 blows over.
But, if you don’t do screen time with your kid, how the eff do you work from home with said kid and survive? Make a schedule, have activities set up that you don’t have to man — those parts I get. But he’s a preschooler who doesn’t always appeal to logic, and wants us to play with him and be present and we cant ’cause WORK EMAILS ^ 3894792374.
Additionally, if you have no office space whatsoever to accommodate working from home, and one of you is stuck on the couch (me /weep), how do the ergonomics of your body possibly survive?
It could always be worse (I could still be on the floor in ECE right now), but I did not fully think of these things. My back hurts. I’m worried about my kid.
Working from home lunches are superbly more tasty, however.