Until today when I found out how easy it was, I think in the back of my mind I always worried about the medical instruction “induce vomiting.” But it’s really simple. When the 2-year-old gobbled up a bunch of his sister’s big plastic gemstones,  I started rooting around in his mouth to get all the crap out, and I found the magic spot that caused a quick resolution. Instant barf, sparkles included. Disaster avoided, again!

I guess this means that we’re settling in. The kindergartner’s scooter-accident skinned knee, the nights no one eats dinner, the super-size meltdown. Increasingly we’ve seen this before, and it just feels like life. Getting into and out of restaurants and stores, in any kind of toddler weather? We can do that too. Doctor’s visit, shots and blood draws, super scary items in the Halloween store? Easy, or maybe I should say easy enough.

This weekend Jay’s been felled with a cold. A few months ago having the kids solo for the whole weekend would have put me on red alert. But I managed a full weekend. I got the kids and me to a local gay family organization picnic, where we got lost (the construction company and homeland security both had better organized events–I was sorry when we finally found what we were looking for!) then after the meal swam in a quite gross pond. We shopped for groceries and Halloween costumes (Spider Girl!). We replaced a toothbrush that had been flushed down the toilet. We even scootered to our local taqueria for a burrito and then got another block for an ice cream cone. We got up at 7am this morning to watch huge trucks dig and refill a big hole in the street where a water pipe broke. We napped, we made cookies, we cleaned up sparkling barf (thank god for Febreeze).

In short, I think I’m getting a handle on it. It’s been days since I cried, and that was reading “Wild,” a wonderful memoir of hiking the Pacific Coast Trail by Cheryl Strayed.

I hope Jay gets well soon, I’m ready to share the duties again. But I’m liking being a dad right now. I feel just about competent, and that’s a big, big thrill.