Skip to main content

Along For the Ride

It is Spring Break again, that wonderful time of the year that means topless drunken antics for some and all day playground antics for others. (Guess which activity is mine!)


Not me.
Yup, my kid has no school. All week. I bet your kid has no school either. For some of you this means holiday camp and playdates and trips to Florida. For us it means movies and playdates, more time at grandma's house, a trip to Washington DC at the end of the week, and a lot of commuting from one martial arts school to another. We still have classes at our dojo for most of the week. And Matthew and I have no intention of skipping a week of BJJ just because there is no school. So Maya comes with us. Everywhere.

Like today. Today Maya and I will be enjoying a delicious pizza lunch at L&B in Brooklyn, after which we will meet Matthew at his BJJ place and drive uptown to the dojo, where Maya will hang out, like she does every Tuesday, before taking her own class at 4:45 and then being picked up by her grandma. Tomorrow she will most likely meet up with a friend in the morning and then have lunch somewhere with Matthew while I go train. On Thursday I will probably take her with me.

Maya actually likes it at my jiu-jitsu place. Everyone is very nice to her there. She sits in the corner of the mat, leaning against a wall and drawing pictures while I work on passing the guard. Sometimes she looks up and waves at me. She knows where the bathrooms are, how to get herself a snack out of my bag and most importantly, how to entertain herself for an hour.

It's a fair trade. During these ten vacation days, Maya will also spend lots of time running around the playground. We will play games with her, draw with her, visit fun museums with her, and spend an awful lot of time playing princess. Not to mention the hotel pool at 9am. The cold hotel pool. At 9am.  So don't worry, she will get to do a lot of fun things that are specifically meant for her. But sometimes she will also tag along on things that are meant for us. She will follow us to our daytime classes, as well as on the necessary dog walks and supermarket trips that make up our daily existence.

When Matthew was a little boy, his dad used to use his old red van to deliver magazines very very early in the morning. Sometimes, Matthew would go along for the ride, often nodding off in the back of the van, while the sun rose over the city.  I have very fond memories of attempting to jog around the Central Park Reservoir with my dad, a former marathon runner, who would often take me out to run with him. Were they being selfish? Should they have hired a babysitter? Are we bad parents for making Maya sit alongside our weekday training sessions? Wouldn't she be better off in camp?

Actually, we have found that Maya is in a better mood on the days that are balanced. She also behaves better. Honestly. Often times that we spend all day doing things that are exclusively for her, she is brattier, less agreeable, less willing to accept a no when it finally comes. But the days that include a park adventure and an ice cream treat, as well as a shopping errand and some spring cleaning that involves the whole family, are better days. Seriously.

Hopefully, what my daughter will learn from all this is that everyone should have time for themselves, and everyone's time is important. And that families work together to get everything done. And that being a part of a community is more valuable than yet another new plastic thing from Toys R UsAnd that mommy and daddy really like to choke people.

She can also run our front desk. Go ahead, ask her to sign you up for classes. She's got it down pat.

Happy Spring Break ya'll!

Comments

  1. Sensei, another very nice piece. I remember spring break, winter break, and other breaks, when Joey was Maya's age. Trying to survive those periods while still working, keeping Joey busy and safe and entertained —a tall order! He turned out great, despite some not-so-great teenage years (just like dad, I'd say).

    Sounds to me like Maya couldn't have better parents — someday she'll really get how much you have given her, in adult terms, anyway. She's such a sweetheart that she probably already appreciates all you two do for her, in kidspeak.

    -Russell

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

November 20, 2018

This morning, while out walking my dog, I watched a mother put her young boy onto the school bus. "Have a good day," she said. "Listen to your teacher."

The boy, who was about five years old, replied that of course he would, although it was unclear which of his mom's wishes he was agreeing to.

Listening. So and so is a "good listener." We talk so much about it, but many of us have no idea how to actually do it., so caught up in the words inside our own head that it is almost impossible to hear anything else. Yeah I am listening to you, but not really, I am really thinking about the next thing I am going to say. I am listening to you, but not really, because even though you know an awful lot about this, deep down my egotistical brain still thinks I know better. I am listening, but not really because even though you just showed the technique in perfect detail three times, and I swore I was really paying attention, somehow when it was my turn to drill it…

Namaste

For the past two days I have been feeling sick; an obvious side effect of spending so much time getting breathed on by small, germy children. This morning I was feeling much better, but not well enough for BJJ, so I decided to go to a yoga class instead. Turns out I was not quite well enough because about halfway through class my body was like, "Hey you, sick girl, you are kind of tired, this feels kind of yucky actually. How about you spend some time in child's pose instead."
As a lifelong athlete I am really, really good at getting messages from my body. I am less skilled, however, at actually following them.
This was not a difficult yoga class. But for me, today, it was impossible. My brain really did not like that. As I sat there with my eyes closed, breathing, the ever helpful voice in my head was saying things like "Everyone must think I am so weak. The teacher must think there is really something wrong with me. I should push through anyway. This is pathetic.&qu…

Roller Coaster

Its the roller coaster that gets me. The fact that you are just going along, doing your work, slowly climbing up, everything is going exactly according to plan, then Zoom!, down you go, fast, maybe not all the way to the bottom again, maybe somewhere halfway, but man you got there FAST! And now here we go again, back on the slow climb.
Some days it feels like you are doing everything right, you are busting your ass to accomplish all of your goals in every way that you know how, yet things just aren't going the way you want them to. On those days it is easy to get angry at the world. Don't you see I am doing my best here? Don't you see how hard I am working? OMG just get the f&*k out of my way! Stop asking for more of me! Can't you see I don't have any more??
But the thing is, that down part, it is on the track. It is part of the ride. it has always been a part of the ride. We knew if was coming, we could see it at the top of the long climb up. We didn't know…