Contents

2024-01-20

Contents

For the second week you find me poolside. My late 2023 habit of writing my weekly entry court-side of basketball practice seems to have well and truly supplanted by swim classes. No matter. What matters is having a few moments strung together to put some semi coherent thoughts together. Though admittedly it is much hotter, humid and noisy than basketball ever was.

In a short hour or so I’ll be taking the good lady wife to the airport as she departs to Los Angeles for a week long conference- with any luck I should see her again on Friday night before the kids go to bed. But we’ll see. International flights and congestion around the airport are always challenging to predict.

Meanwhile the much anticipated departure of the grand parents back to the southern hemisphere should be occurring on Wednesday. As mentioned previously this visit hasn’t been as painful as previous extended stays, despite them living in close quarters. But, needless to say, the time is due. The final few weeks of every one of their visits becomes increasingly challenging. I’m never quite sure if once the end is in sight that tolerances become shorter or if they get tangible worse as they wind themselves up about long flights and going home.

Either way, with their departure, I shall be solo parenting for at least two days this week. Not unbearable and certainly not unheard of, but it is the first time in a while and the big guy has a lot more personality than he has had in the past. Just this morning he dared to say to me that

You just sound like blah blah blah

Which I obviously got all up in his grill about. Not because I personally found it terribly offensive in the moment, but I know that others would and I can’t be condoning that kind of behaviour. However, what was odd, was that as I quickly descended to his eye level to be in his face - he flinched. As if he was preparing for me to beat him. Which for the record, I’m not in the habit of beating my kids, but it’s interesting that in his mind there is an expectation of getting slammed for disrespect. And I’m not sure where that’s coming from. It’s not like the constant loop of Disney’s Cars movies is reaching him violence, so I’m left thinking is peers at school are quick with their fists.

So what else?

Tomorrow I’m taking the little one to therapy, which should be interesting. I’m going because aside from the obvious of his mother not being here to, for the last two weeks he has flat out refused to do anything there. Apparently. Apparently he’s just sitting down and refusing to engage at all. I suspect that he needs a little encouragement. Or rather a reset of expectations that not engaging is not an option.

In fact, I’m glad the grandparents are leaving. There’s a good amount of resetting of expectations that needs to occur with the kids (in my opinion). I’m fed up with them being unable to sit at the dinner table. I’m fed up them requiring an entirely different meal to be cooked for them - which they then don’t touch, and then they subsist on snacks throughout the evening instead. I’m fed up with this ridiculous bed time routine where I need to sit with them. Last night I didn’t escape the kids bedroom until 10:40 (when their bedtime is 8).

There’s just a lot of things that have slowly slid into being unacceptable all because I don’t want the drama of the grandparents kicking up a fuss about the kids crying for a few minutes. They are kids. They are gonna cry. But they are not hurt. They are not starving. they are learning that their our boundaries and constraints.

It is in any child’s nature to push boundaries. To explore what is fixed and what is flexible. But when my hard lines are diminished because more than half the adults in the house are so opposed to a few tears I find myself constrained.

Ironically, of course, it’s my usual constraints that make my kids largely so lovely and so much nicer than the other grandkids (as I’m often told).

Anyways, it doesn’t matter terribly if I do the therapy run tomorrow as my own parents will likely be missing our regular weekly call, given that they are currently in south Wales for the funeral of my grandmother’s sister. She had been sick for a good while and the dementia had largely eaten her away several years ago, but after the recent death of my grandmother I don’t think there was much tethering her to the world.

My grandmother was one of seven siblings and only the youngest remains, but in terms of genetics, almost all of them got towards their 90th birthday or beyond and in largely good health despite the circumstances in which they must’ve grown up.

Work

On the work front, mostly quiet I suppose. I had some initial kick off meetings regarding the next hospital project, but that is yet to be fully in my ownership, so I’m comfortable just keeping half an eye on it until I need to take it over entirely. Admittedly, it’s nice to have a project that feels like a) it has a tangible target and delivery b) might do some good in the world.

The project essentially deals with scheduling beds and nurses for the neonatal intensive care unit. Helping babies that are fighting for life, feels like a good thing.

Otherwise, given a nudge from my manager on the Friday prior, I set up some meetings with some business development folks that are driving the sales funnel. Getting my face in front of them, throwing them some of the ideas I’ve had clattering around my brain for a while, and letting them know that I’d like to be more involved.

On first glance, it seems to all be well received and they were receptive to the pitch. But getting my face in front of someone and being the person they call are very different things. Time will tell. But promising first steps.