Friday, September 4, 2009

Hot and Not

Catching my sweet Andy indulging the boys in their interest or need for his attention is uniquely alluring. A few months ago, we had a spell where I could not get enough of him. I realize now that my hormones may have collided with a stage when he was especially available for play and talk with us,resulting in an absolute closeness. I continue to compare notes with other mothers in cyberspace and live friendship. There is an undeniable prevalence of fathers who "deal with" child centered activity and routines. I choose the expression "deal with" because what I see is similar to the courteous and detached attitude, best reserved for unwanted exchanges with solicitors or service persons. Is a begrudging compliance the new alternative to meaningful engagement and support? What does this teach our children? How does it impact intimacy (between Mom and Dad)? One friend illustrated the way in which we remain purely animal in our maternal instincts. It is intoxicating to see your man offer mental and emotional accessibility to your children. One reaction to this sense of connection and security is the urge to procreate (do it) with them. And conversely, our fierce protective instinct commands a distance for ourselves from (subtext: not procreate with) one who would, even passively deny our young or their mothers(us). Is this excusable if done only out of obliviousness? Does any grown person really want to play Bat Cave or Barbies with a toddler repeatedly or ever? Generally No, but we give ourselves to these moments in order to build trust and connection by sharing and supporting their values. At what age I wonder does the unconditional love/warship for a parent figure begin to wane? At what age do kids realize you are or are not really there for them on their terms?

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