Saturday, October 23, 2010

Mr Mom

Scene One, Take One

My wife is away for a three-day conference, so Mr Mom is pulling all the stops to make this a fun weekend. I usually end up clearing my schedule almost wide-open to play, so it's kind of a "break" for me as well.  a way.

Smoothie, pancakes and eggs on the table, twenty minutes to eat before teeth and shoes and off to school. Then, basically the first full sentence I hear this morning comes from my 9 y.o.: "No offense, but it's a lot easier when you're gone than when mom's gone."
Nice. She left about twenty-five minutes ago.
I later confirmed by phone what I thought that very moment: "There's no way in hell she's more accommodating when you three are climbing all over her flying solo."
And anyway, how did such an awesome Buddhist practitioner come to raise such a little shit? Need to look into that.
"I said 'no offense,' didn't I?!" Yes. Yes you did. None taken. Would you like another pancake?

I've been really digging this whole "teach your kids to hold you to bodhisattva ideals" thing. Not only because it really pushes me to raise the bar in terms of generosity, discipline and patience, but because at the same time it shows them the real measure of what it takes to be on the path. They are learning what a bodhisattva "ought" to act like, and that's a good thing, even if I don't measure up.

Day Two

We carved pumpins today. I took the opportunity to remind them of how things don't always go according to plan. What's the Japanese saying? "One pumpkin, one cut" or something like that. My oldest quotes her art teacher that sometimes a "mistake" turns into a masterpiece. I agree, but add that some mistakes end in a pile of rubble, so we need to be careful at the same time we're open to medium-influence.
As it turns out, all three pumpkins are mighty fierce and everyone is pleased. I'm happy to postpone the lesson. ;)

Afterward, we played a little more with the watch-your-mind-for-thoughts game. This time, after a few moments of the "say THOUGHT" bit, we changed it to waiting and watching and when a solid worthwhile thought arose, we were to sing "om mani padme hum" and imagine the thought turning into butterflies and dried leaves, blown away by the wind, and then return to watching.
I was amazed at how interested they were in the whole thing. We didn't spend as much time as the other day, maybe ten minutes if that, but it was pleasing just to feel that I'd given them another bit of exposure to the world of training the mind.

Maybe it makes up a little bit for me wanting to sell them to the lowest bidder just hours before, when for reasons beyond comprehension they decided to test how annoying and sarcastic they could be to one another in the car.

What is the seasonally adjusted market value of a three-pack of monsters?

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