Knowing No

Languishing in the refrigerator right now is my homemade pasta salad, chickpea soup, and dinner-rolls. Being a single-parent of a toddler means cooking for a particularly unappreciative audience. So, this weekend, I “cooked” Sophie a dinner of carrot-sticks, grapes, and peanut-butter on a toasted English muffin, accompanied, of course, by milk. She ate it all up happily.

“You know,” she told me, while cheerfully munching away, “a lot of mommies don’t how know to cook. I’m glad you how know to cook.”

I am glad that sticking an English-muffin into the toaster is enough to impress my child.

I am also glad that I sometimes do know how to say no. I’m not cooking elaborate dinners, this week. I’m not even attending all the meetings I was supposed to attend last week. Sophie got a cold after her first week of preschool and so I stayed home with her on Friday and Saturday, and was grateful for the opportunity to do nothing. We even went to the library, got some videos, and violated our ordinary no-more-than-thirty-minutes-of-tv-a-day rule — because of course I caught the cold from Sophie, and so watching videos was about all we could muster, while munching our toast on peanut butter.

Only two more days till Ben comes home.

Lately, other than drastically slipping my standards, the hardest part of this particular single-parenting-stretch is that Sophie keeps asking me: “Why isn’t my daddy here to play with me?”


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