Friday, August 28, 2009

How Firm Thy Friendship

At this point in my life I am so lucky to be surrounded by people that I enjoy and respect. People I can laugh with and cry with. The stories of how and when I crossed paths with each person are unique and varied. Some I have known for years. Some are more recent gifts. My relationship with each of them started when our lives intersected. Whatever happened before we met fades into the backround and it is easy to forget that there are details and adventures that were previously experienced. Sometimes these things are revealed through time and bring new facets to the friendship. Other times the details never surface and end up on the chopping block of unimportant facts. Everyone enters a relationship with baggage. Some only have light carry ons that are easy to manage. Other people have a large oversized suitcase full to the brim with intricate secrets and extreme adventures. It is what it is and makes us who we are. Opening your arms and accepting someone into your life, baggage and all, brings the sort of friendships that will be worth cultivating and cherishing forever.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Just Me.

I spent the entire summer preparing my baby for Kindergarten. We talked about the bus and found a new lunch box and backpack. We toured the school and met her teacher. I primed her for all the new friends she will meet and all the fun she will have. We set out a special outfit last night and packed her lunch for the big day. I felt like I had remembered every little detail to make it a great day. The one thing I forgot to consider was what I might feel like. I have been through this twice before so why even bother to consider it. Up until the last moment before she walked on to the big bus I was worried about her reaction and her feelings but the minute that bus door whooshed shut it all hit me. I gave myself to the kids completely and readily for the last eleven years. All of my teaching and care leading up to this very day. There is no turning back to chubby baby legs and preschool. I have been telling myself all summer that I was excited for the bus to arrive and the beginning of new things. I yearned for silence for so many years but when you get to the actual moment the silence is actually deafening. Emotions are such a funny thing. They are so random and uncontrollable. Predicting how you will feel in a new situation is nearly impossible so there is no way to safeguard your heart.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Not Me Monday!

Following along with the blog carnival over at My Charming Kids with this weeks Not Me Monday! Read, commiserate, enjoy!

I could never have traveled 12 hours straight in a van with 3 kids and my husband with out going crazy nope not me.

I did NOT arrive home to two piles of cat poop on my bed directly where I sleep. That would have been super gross and it also would have proven that cats are way too smart for their own good.

I certainly didn't take the girls to Walmart to check out the new Miley Cyrus clothes the weekend before school starts. It was NOT so crowded you could hardly move and I didn't run into two people I know doing the same thing as me...nope certainly not!

I could never be sitting here waiting to take my baby to meet her kindergarten teacher and be hearing every bad word she knows streaming out of her mouth from the other room (you know like pee pee poop and booger :) I could NOT be slightly (OK VERY) worried about what she will do when we meet the teacher and I am certainly not even more worried about what she will do when the door to the bus closes Thursday.

I am definitely not having major anxiety over the school year starting that would be silly since I am not the one actually going to school.

I am certainly NOT brushing off my party dress and digging out my party blower for Thursday morning when I send all three kids on the bus for the very first time..nope not ME. I am sure I will NOT have a few tissues hidden away in my pocket just in case I might need them absolutely not!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Turn Over a New Leaf

It seems Fall is always a time for change. With the dawn of a new school year ahead there is always a chance for reinvention. I remember when I was going into middle school and then high school how I would sit there in the days before school started almost writing my own story for the school year in my head. Who I would be, what I would wear, how I would react to things and exactly who I wouldn't be from my experience the previous year. I am a little past the school days now but not past the need for change and reinvention. With my last little bird flying off to kindergarten this year I have some choices and decisions to make myself. Exactly who I will be and what I want to accomplish for just me as opposed to the last 11 years of me being ME with a kid attached to my hip. My thoughts are really jumbled at the moment so it is hard to find a clear path. I guess that is what happens when you lose sight of your own thoughts and goals among playdates and dirty diapers for so long. It is almost like a new beginning to the second half of my life. Exciting because there are so many options available but scary at the same time. I certainly wouldn't trade in the last eleven years that I have had the opportunity to be the one the sun rises and sets on for my kids. I have learned invaluable things about myself that I wish I had known before college. I wouldn't have chosen the same education path then if I had owned a crystal ball. I know life doesn't work that way though you have to live some things to get to the point where you are ready to make changes and informed choices. The one thing I can see clearly through the fog of the unknown is that I want actually I believe I really need to...make a difference in whatever it is I chose to do in the years to come. It is like I am staring up at a vast night sky with hundreds of twinkling stars and I am reaching for them.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Propelling into the Future

This time of year always brings out the sound of the helicopters. By that I certainly don't mean large metal objects with propellers but flesh and blood adults who hover about keeping a finger in all their children do and say. Over the summer the chop chop sound dims although I am sure it is still around I can't hear it because I purposely put myself in summer vacation isolation. When the last few weeks of August rolls around and school starts the army of copters comes out full force. This year it is even more evident because I have my youngest starting kindergarten. For me that is the real first time that you have to start separating yourself from your child. They have been glued to you for 5 years but when that bus stops and they walk on full of fear and anticipation you have to realize that it is time for them to grab hold of their Independence. The minute that bus door whooshes shut the parent is no longer responsible for wiping their nose or making sure they can open their milk at lunch. We can't remind them to say please or thank you or walk behind them picking up after them. This is the time for them to have to start doing for themselves and learning through trial and error. The urge to continue to be the dictator is there but the need to become the silent supporter is some how stronger for me. Although this is so clear with kindergarten it actually applies to every grade. Each year they move a little farther away from the grasp of parents and toward independence. Our job is to teach them this and give them the space they need to find it. I often wonder where the kids who aren't given that chance will end up later in life. When they have their moms and dads still hovering about and fighting their battles for them all the way through school and suddenly they graduate and are stuck out in the cruel cruel world with no practice. I wonder if they will sink or if they will float. I certainly hope when they have kids of their own they don't fly.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

15 years... August 20, 2009

So many times I look at my life and am so thankful for the person I have found to share it with. The strength and respect that I feel between us would carry me through anything. All of our most important events that we have shared have become like building blocks for our lifetime together. Happy events like new houses and babies are as integral to who we are as the ones that aren't as happy like lost jobs and injuries. When our three girls look at us together as their mom and dad and as a married couple I hope that they see commitment, happiness and a love they aspire too. They would be so lucky to find a man like their father to share life with. When I think of all the couples I know in different stages of their relationship I know that each love story is as unique as a fingerprint. None are the same and no one can fully understand unless they are living the story. In our case an epic romance.

Monday, August 17, 2009

NOT Me Monday...Vacation Edition!

Following along with the blog carnival over at My Charming Kids. A special edition here this week! We traveled 12 hours in the car to get to Holden Beach, NC with my sister and her husband and two sons and my parents! Lots of fun! Enjoy!

We could never have driven 12 hours in the car with 3 whiny kids just to get to the ocean. I certainly did not reach the breaking point at least 10 times and I didn't hold my breath and count to 20 just to keep myself from going insane.

I certainly didn't eat greasy pizza and a few glasses of wine then go do the treadmill at the hotel .. I could never have had to get off 3 times to get water..nope not me!!

I have not had to deal with earaches, diarrhea, tantrums, splinters and snotty attitudes already and it is only day THREE!!

My brother in law could never have sabotaged my sister by leaving my screaming 2 year old nephew in the bathroom with her while she was in the shower and he never could have been pooping messily on the potty..that would have been just plain MEAN.

Chris and I did not go on a date to grocery shop at Walmart just to have 30 minutes of kid free not in a million years! I could never have gotten up at 6am on my first day at the beach to run just because I felt I HAD to keep up with my running plan..that would have been silly!

My parents could never have gotten a phone call from their realtor with an offer on MY childhood home for 40,000 $ less then the asking price..that would be ridiculous!!

My sister is NOT trying to talk me into going to karaoke at a local beach bar called Shenanigans ..that would never happen since I don't sing in front of anyone! There is no way we are taking advantage of the free limo pick and drop off and we certainly aren't planing on having our dad take a prom like picture of us before we go..never!

My three daughters could NOT have had a ten minute long discussion about why a penis is sometimes called a wiener and I certainly did not pretend to be deaf when they tried to include me in the conversation..that would have been just plain rude!!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Abhor or Adore

If you are a man and read my blog you may want to turn and not just walk but RUN away. Maybe it is just me but I absolutely hate my boobs. I mean despise them. I look in the mirror and my eyes are drawn straight to them and I always think about how much better I would look with less. I always try to minimize the appearance and never want to draw attention to them. It has gotten worse as I have gotten older and had each baby. Bigger, saggier...worse. Today I bought a cute bathing suit and it fit great except for in the chestular area. Nothing stays where I put it unless I stand on my head or use duct tape. These same things that I abhor seem to be the exact things that men adore. Every man I ever talk to about this subject doesn't see the stretch marks or the sag they just see buxom bosom. To them this is womanly and sexy but to me it is just a nuisance. I can't get in the heads of the woman who chose to have enhancement surgery. To me it is ludicrous to want to increase something that makes me so insecure. Maybe it is about me and my inner psyche or maybe it is the fact that woman are so often sexualized in the media but to me putting a frame around your breasts is just not good for womankind and certainly not good for our future womankind.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Praying For Gluten Free Cloth Diapers ??

Have you ever noticed that when you read about illnesses you subconsciously seem to start feeling the symptoms? Just like when you hear about someone that has lice your head starts to itch automatically. I have noticed lately that the same principle seems to apply to reading blogs that contain very strong opinions.Whether the opinions are religious in nature or nutrition related it is like the Pied Piper appeared and called all the readers forth. They all pick up the righteous blogger on their shoulders and raise her up to stardom. I almost want to call it a cult following. The thing what shocks me is that a basically faceless person can write something they believe and it becomes like an invitation to join some sort of club. My conclusion is that the people who fall so easily into a new life were missing something to begin with. They were surely out there searching for something to change them or fill them up in some way. I truly hope these things fill the void although I question the longevity of something that is discovered on a whim.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Not Me Monday!

Playing along with the blog carnival over at My Charming Kids again this week. Join in and have some fun!

My sister and I did NOT drag 5 kids to Bob Evans for lunch and then to Costco. NOPE that would have been quite possibly INSANE.

I certainly didn't start crying when I saw the 2 journalists that had been held in North Korea come off the plane and embrace their families...NOPE I don't do that. I didn't keep crying long after the story was over because I couldn't stop thinking about what the 4 months must have been like for them.

I did NOT get stung by a yellow jacket while running and have to stop and mess up my time to pull out the stinger. I mean really.. what are the chances?

I could never have gotten new carpet on my entire second floor of my house and I would never have left the entire time it was being installed because I couldn't stand watching people walking around touching my stuff.. nope that would be really obsessive and sort of compulsive.

I could never have sat and had a whole bottle of wine and a bag of chips with my sister while we watched Chris and my brother-in-law drag our new dryer in and struggle while hooking it up ...nope NEVER me.

I certainly did NOT have to spend one whole day of my weekend with my in-laws talking about things like antique barns, shakers and the circus all without the benefit of alcohol...nope not ME.

There is no way I had to hide in the bathroom (several times) while at my in-laws to check my email and Facebook...that would have been rude!

I could never have laid awake two nights in a row writing a blog in my head and then in the end decide not to write it down or publish it ...nope that would have been silly.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Is the Grass Greener on the Other Side of the Picket Fence?

When you are young and innocent you imagine your life as white picket fences and roses. Euphoric marriage and well adjusted kids all tied up in a bow. Soccer mom and career woman with time to spare to bake cookies. In reality things can never be quite so greener side of the fence. There are always loose ends and nothing is ever as simple as it seems. The time you think you will have to be super woman is filled up with mundane tasks. The cookies come out burnt and the kids are late to practice. The marriage valleys are just as prominent as the hills. Real life takes over the innocence and in the end a new more flexible reality forms. One that changes and morphs with time. Some people can accept the ebb and flow while others decide to move on to something different in hopes of finding that perfect picket fence. The problem with that is that perfection does not exist.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Vivid Gray

Sometimes I wish I saw things in a more black and white manner. Instead my mind is all gray. I can't just make a decision and be happy with it, ever. I have to weigh and reweigh all the options and the affect each option would have on everyone involved. I envy the people who easily make a choice and move on without a second thought or a regret. My mind desperately wants to overtake the process but a little thing called my heart gets in the way. Sometimes I would rather throw the choice that would make me the happiest in front of the train and choose something that might make others breath easier. I know I sound like a wet noodle or a bit naive but I really believe that each decision I make affects the flow of people's lives. The real problem is that I forget that it is my happiness that I need to put ahead of others and that that is the one I am in the most control of. I need to do what is right for me and my life and stop trying to take everyone else's twisted road onto my shoulders. It gets so heavy and I am so tired. As a friend so eloquently pointed out to me, I need to appreciate myself and my path and focus on my own happiness goals and let everyone else concentrate on finding their own way. Now I have thought it, considered it and written it I hope I can actually do it!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Temper Temper

Sometimes I just want to lay on the ground and pound my fists over and over. I want to yell it's not fair at the top of my lungs and let the tears flow hot and fast. I want to slam a door or two and hide in my room with my music blaring. I want to sleep in until 10am and then lounge on the couch til noon. I want to find someone to blame..anyone but myself. Then I wake up and realize as an adult I have to pull up the bootstraps and paste a smile on my face. I have to become the one who induces the tantrums and the door slamming. The one that is the parent.