When I was a kid, my brother told me that if I ever wanted to wake up at a certain time, I would just have to look at the clock and visualize the time I wanted to wake up. If you want to wake up at 5 am, think about 5 am. I don’t know why I would ever think of that as a child, but somehow it worked. I’ve never had to use an alarm clock, unless I wanted a quick nap and my weirdo-trick might not work. But it always works. I never oversleep. I also never sleep in, thanks to two kids who always yank me out of whatever dream I am dreaming which is likely blurry but wonderful
and never involves working out or begging my kids to please come home with their lunch bags, even if it’s at 5 am.
I worry when my cat Lilo (named after Lilo and Stitch!) is super affectionate with me because cats know shit. Like earthquakes and when old people will die. So sometimes when my cat is super cuddly and gets on my lap and purrs, I look into her eyes and ask, “Is this it, Lilo? Is this my time?” I wish I could just get her to agree that she won’t eat my face if I die on the couch, having eaten a whole sandwich without sitting up, the remote still in hand and some Bravo re-run flickering on the tv. I would really appreciate it if she could also go into my phone and clear my search history and paw some messages to my family like, “Hi sister, I was the only who broke your Caboodles but I’m gone now, so sorry about that,” or “Sorry brother, remember when you asked me to take a message if that girl calls? Well I told her that you no longer live at home, so that’s probably why you never went out. Oopsies!”
We bought the kids some expensive magic trick kit a few months ago and they recently went through and demonstrated it like it was a real magic show. It was the cutest thing. I had to pretend I didn’t know that the handkerchief disappeared into a plastic thumb, especially when TJ performed the trick for a second time and put the thumb on the wrong finger. But it was fun to watch these two little kids of mine navigating this entertainment world and enjoying the oohs and aahhhs from a mother who knew but pretended not to because that’s really what parenting is: a series of sleight of hand tricks where we never let on what we actually know, what we actually give up and suffer through if it brings kids the magic they deserve.