The Base Layer

You can’t go out in a Canadian winter without a proper base layer. One that absorbs the sweat, swass & discourages the static brought on by well-meaning fleece outer layers.

Do you get what I’m saying? I’ll elaborate.

We’ve live here as a family for one full year now. Enter a cliché. Our family has learned so much in the past year. We moved in together as a blended family, me, a new mama to these gorgeous, perpetually hungry creatures.

It is only now that I can see the base layer taking hold. What we’ve instilled in them here is keeping them warm, safe and secure. It’s so gratifying to see the diligence of words, limits and laughter taking hold.

You know those annoying holes in your favorite base layer? The children now have those too. My attitude towards cleaning hamster cages has been transmitted, as has my occasional helplessness from the couch (‘Can you get me a drink?’). More than anything though, I’m proud. For me, this base layer means that when I have a bad day I panic less about the impact that it will have on the girls long term. I no longer beat myself up about snapping occasionally. Mamas have limits too. What we always end up doing though is Talking It Out.

ooohmmm talking it out aaaaauuuummmmmm

It’s like a mantra around here. There are dinner table talks, family meeting talks (good and bad), bed time talks, in-the-car talks and of course, sitting-at-the-kitchen-island talks just one-on-one. This is the integral piece of the base layer I think will serve them most effectively beyond our family boundaries. If that happens over food, all the better.

The children have their base layer. A small back pack has been lifted off my shoulders and I can take a seat on the couch. Can’t put my feet up yet but that will come too.


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