Practical Dad

Your Life Is No Longer Your Own - Re-evaluating the mp3

When you have kids, you begin to understand that your life really is no longer your own.  You can still have some favorite activities or hobbies, but they have to be more tightly scheduled and some of them have to be curtailed.  Especially in terms of media - music, movies and television.  Kids are affected to one degree or another by what and how often they see something and you simply have to closely monitor what you enjoy.  An example would be my use of the mp3 player.

I have a real fondness for the Pogues, especially their raucous Bottle of Smoke; another favorite is Meat Loaf's Paradise by the Dashboard Lights.  When I finally got an mp3 player, I was delighted that I could finally hear my own music and not have to worry what kids were in the vicinity.  But it's sunk in that even with the mp3, I have to curtail the music since the earbuds prevent me from hearing what else is going on in the household.  When you become more familiar with the kids and their habits and routines, you learn that the household has a tone and rhythm as alive as any music itself.  The kids have their own give-and-take and you can start to determine when things are moving out of sync.  The term "mother's intuition" is frequently used for knowing when something is amiss, but it can also be attributed to an increased awareness of how the kids act and interact.

This was brought home the other day as I worked in the kitchen while the three were upstairs.  I put the buds in but then removed them when I remembered that my spouse was gone.  And within a few minutes, I began to note a shriller tone to the play, one that I wouldn't have heard using the buds.  And yes, within a short while I was upstairs to intercede with the squabbling ones.

So I now have another device that I'll use intermittently until the kids are gone.  And by then, I'll have to learn to use another platform and hope that I can still get Meat Loaf and the Pogues.

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