8.25.2006

Destiny

Do you ever wonder if perhaps you had made a left instead of a right, not gone to that party your junior year of high school, not dated that one boy, not gone to the store three weeks ago – have you ever wondered how your life would be different if you had made a few different decisions? Mundane, normal decisions? How do they affect our lives? Do they really matter? And if so – why don’t we pay more attention to them?

I make decisions every day – have my whole life. And for most of them I don’t give them a second thought. I choose a black iced tea instead of coffee, I skip breakfast, I eat eggs instead of cereal, I go to lunch, I just instead of lunch, I have chicken for dinner instead of beef. I make decisions all day long and just never consider the impact of most. I wonder how many of these normal daily decisions impact my destiny…

8.23.2006

My Love, My Life

My husband has an online journal. He doesn't write nearly enough to satisfy me, but when he does, it cracks my heart open and makes it capable of more love than I ever imagined. Anyway - he has an amazing talent for writing - something I wish I had. He can spin a story from anything - make the mundane interesting. Perhaps you can go get him excited about writing more? My prompting doesn't seem to help.


Perhaps I am biased...just perhaps.

Simile

I am a tired bag lady. I close my eyes..the stress of the morning stinging them– making my head pound. I wonder how I can keep up this pace – handling crisis after crisis – never quite resolving anything – just getting everyone past the critical stage so that nobody gets killed or fired.

I am an overworked social worker. This job is draining. I arrive in a fairly good mood – but quickly deteriorate. Phone calls, instant messages, emails – all proclaiming problems of doom – it is what I deal with all day long. How can I possibly be excited about this job? How can I manage to get through the day sane with this kind of a mess to deal with for 10 hours straight day after day? I just don’t have all the answers…

I am a third grade play-yard attendant. There are times when I don’t even know where to begin or how to fix something. People are constantly avoiding work, messing up their work, or simply don’t know how to do their work in the first place. They need constant assistance, reassurance, point of escalation. I just cannot escape the management piece of this job. 90% of my time is spent breaking up fights and documenting what went wrong so we don’t do it again.

I am a circus freak. I play ‘work’ all day long and fool everyone into thinking I am some high powered executive, when really I just feel like a little kid dressing up in her daddy’s clothes, clutching a brief case and pretending to go to the office for the day.

8.22.2006

Lack of focus

I go to work. I have every intention of doing good things – not great things – I don’t want to solve world hunger or create world peace… I just want to do my job a little bit better than anyone expects me to. And yet I cannot seem to stay focused and get a damn thing done. I get side-tracked. I read email. I browse the news. I start a post for blogger. I read a few journals I like. I shop online. I do a little work here and there. I attend a bazillion conference calls barely contributing the bare minimum…and I go home. Not a stellar record. Not something to be proud of. Luckily I am not like this every day – but there are those days where…oh dear god, I cannot focus and get nothing substantial done.

How do you do it? How do you stay focused in the face of all of the distractions of the internet? How do you make yourself work when –well, lets face it. Work is not fun.

8.18.2006

What I believe...

The only thing more boring to me than reading about someone else’s dreams is hearing about their political beliefs. I have forever hated to hear people drone on and on about how their parents were staunch republicans, and “oh god, how can that be in a world such as this…blah blah blah blah blah” and they seemed able to go on and on forever in this fashion. And yet I find myself wondering what I really believe.

Maybe it is because of the situations with Israel and Iraq. Perhaps because of the threats we are all facing post-9/11. Maybe it is just part of getting older and trying to find your place in this world…trying to find out how to make a difference. Whatever it is, I can say with certainty that that nothing….is certain. At least not from my point of view.

I read an editorial in the local paper a week or so ago. It was written from a man’s point of view…he was in an airport and was watching an older couple as they stood together staring out the window in the terminal. They were watching cargo being moved off of a plane and seemed very, very sad. Their boy was being returned home from Iraq. In a box. He had served his country well and had died fighting for freedom. Now, this is touching and brave, and it is wonderful to see how many people fight for our freedom and for America in general… But – I am having a hard time with the whole war thing these days. I am certain that having two little boys adds to reasons for my newly perked interest in these matters – but I think just being a parent or adult in general makes me more aware of what is going on… and it forces me to figure out what I believe.


I would have to say that I have been a Republican all my life, however what does that really mean? My mother was one. It is just how I grew up. And it is wrong. I have my own beliefs and by declaring a party at all I think we are taking an easy way out – finding a loop-hole so that we don’t have to soul-search and figure out what we truly believe in. We have somewhere to place blame when things go wrong. By saying I am a Democrat or a Republican, I am escaping the soul-searching needed to figure out what I believe and because of that, I think I have failed as a citizen and more deeply as a person. So – here goes…


I am a republican.

I tend to think of life from a conservative point of view.

I think people should have to work for what they get out of life.

I believe that I work in order to support my family and for the good of those that I choose. I am not working to evenly distribute my income across the US in order to allow those that just don’t feel like getting job to stay home and do nothing. I do not believe that we should distribute the wealth. I am not working to support you or your neighbors or the people who are living beyond their means.

I believe that as a citizen of the United States I have certain fiduciary responsibilities. I need to support my government and ensure that I am feeding a certain amount of money back into the system so that we can maintain safety and security for our future.

I believe that parents should have the right to choose what type of school their children attend. Life is not fair – it is life. If a child has an opportunity to be well educated and wants to pursue it and the parents can afford it – then they should do so.

I believe that with this amazing freedom that the United States comes a responsibility to defend our country, to fight for our values, and to support our military. We must make this a safe place for our children to grow up. They need a place where they can learn, and grow, and believe in whatever they want.

I believe that as a citizen of the United States, I should be able to expect my government to make the world a safe place for me to live. I should not live in fear of other countries or governments.


And yet – I am a democrat.

I believe that I should have the right to choose religion – or not to. I do not believe that it is up to my country, my school, my neighbor, or even my husband to dictate or even encourage what I believe in. I should not have to support any religion unless I so choose. My children should not be influenced to become any religion unless they so choose, and the government needs to stay free and clear of this – always.

I believe that good people end up in bad situations and need help. There are hurricanes, and floods, and tragedies that affect our people and we need to help them. Financially, emotionally, in every way possible.

I believe that there are sick and destitute people that just need a little help to get moving in the right direction – and I think it is our obligation as citizens to do this.

I believe that a woman’s body is her own – and she has the right to have an abortion or a baby.

And then there are things I believe that make me think I am neither party… the gray areas.

I believe in God, but not in the devil or hell.

I believe in safety and security and believe that we all have the right to defend ourselves. And yet I don’t want a gun in my house – because I don’t want my children hurt by it. And I don’t want a gun in your house either because I don’t want my kids coming over there to play and have some accident happen.

I believe that evolution is how we ended up here – yet God may have had a part in that. How could something this intricate and beautiful and perfect be an accident?

I believe in defending our country, and yet I cannot fathom letting my babies go across the ocean to fight for something I don’t understand. I am not sure I believe in defending Israel or Iran or any other country – and I am on the fence as to how to properly defend my own.

I hate that the truly rich seem to get away with paying no taxes – that there are loop-holes to protect their money, while the middle class and poor bear the brunt of the obligations.

I envisioned all of this amounting to much more than it seems to have. I had hoped that I would have outlined a perfect religion or political stance – that I would have explored new territory and embarked upon the unknown…but alas I have not. I have come full circle and determined that I am neither a Democrat nor a Republican. I am just me.

8.17.2006

Big Giant Mommy-Baby

Where do you working moms find time to do the simple things, like clean out the old too-small clothes from closets and drawers, wash sheets, wipe down cribs, shop for new clothes, bleach socks, buy sippy cups? Where do you find freaking time to be a mom? I have looked and there is no time left. None. On the weekdays I am lucky the boys eat dinner and get to bed at all…forget the other stuff. On the weekends we attempt laundry and semi-house cleaning, but ohmygod the dog hair and messes that need delt with. I don’t know when I last cleaned the bath tub. I really don’t. I am not lying. I have NO idea. I just keep sticking the boys in there and taking them out – hoping the soap on their bodies will clean the toys and tub. I would throw their clothes in there too – but I am afraid they are peeing in the water and so I am just not comfortable with that yet.

I think of up-coming potty training and I quietly weep. When will I have time for that disaster? When???? I can barely get them cleaned up and to bed at a decent time – adding more tasks to the routine is going to kill us all.

Am I just being a big, giant mommy-baby here?

Summer Disaster - Haiku

Our air conditioner broke

Texas summer heat

We are melting in our home

Where is the easy way?

The boys stand by the coffee table, pulling the little wooden boats, trains and airplanes out of the puzzle and either throwing them on the floor, banging them together, or trying to gain nutritional value from them. As I walk through the room, my purse and laptop bag in hand, they reach for me, waddling across the room with their little arms in the air. They have these urgent, needy looks on their cherub faces as they beg to be picked up and hugged. Sometimes I will pick them up one last time. Other times I will pat their little heads or simply wave and try to get out of the house without a major production. But – every single time it hurts a little bit to see the disappointment on their faces when I put them down, or walk on by. They seem so trusting and happy to see me – to spend time with me, and so horribly wounded when I leave…

It is hard to hurt those tiny, trusting little boys. It is hard to leave every day and go to work. And it really is hard to deal with the fact that I look forward to the time away from them in some small way. Lets face it. It is nice to sit in this office of four walls – nobody crying or pooping and expecting me to do anything about it. It is easy to spend the day picking my own priorities and worrying about me and me alone. It is also selfish and lonely. I miss them horribly when they are not with me, even if I get some satisfaction out of the alone time. I look forward to going home and seeing them every afternoon… and yet… and yet…

When I walk in the door I am trying to de-stress from my day at the office. I am trying to adjust to being “home mommy” instead of “work executive” – and honestly that takes a few minutes. However good luck with getting ANY minutes once you walk into the door of my home at 5:45. And I realize that I have had lots of minutes to myself during the day – but I have also been getting chewed out by various people since 7:45am and am a little tired in general by the time evening arrives.

So – I walk in the door and am trampled by tiny shoe-clad baby feet, arms raised grunting and tugging at me – although I am thrilled beyond belief, I am also on my way to a breakdown. I try to pay attention to my wonderful boys, and the girls if they are home. I change clothes (babies in tow) and start dinner (babies in tow) and even with my husband and I splitting the dinner responsibilities it still eats up so much time. Getting everyone fed and cleaned up takes us into the 7:30 timeframe, when we start getting the boys ready for bed and read to them by 8.

There is no time in the work week for fun. For hugging, and playing, and goofing off. I guess I just miss it. I feel torn no matter where I am or what I am doing. When does this all get easier?

8.10.2006

Thinking Wishing Hoping Looking

Thinking about…

…how the summer is over and kids are starting back to school this week

…how quickly the boys are growing and changing into funny (and sometimes annoying) little people

…all of the household tasks I have to do and wondering when I will find the time. Oh laundry – why will you not wash yourself?

Wishing that…

…I had refused to let the girls go to their dad’s house yesterday. It wasn’t a day they were supposed to be with him and he has screwed me out of a lot of time this summer. I simply gave in because I didn’t want to fight with him.

…he would die in a car crash and I wouldn’t have to deal with him anymore. What? I would pretend I felt bad for my daughters.

…I could take 4 weeks off of work with pay just to do things for ME.

Hoping that…

…my job gets easier. I am buried at work and NEED for it to let up a bit

Looking forward to…

…jury duty tomorrow so that I can catch a break!

8.02.2006

Old

I am getting more emotional as I get older. Older…I hate that word. But more on that later. What I have noticed is that I am more emotional than I used to be. A movie, a song, or simply some irrelevant-seeming thing or activity makes me tear up, or get angry – or takes me back to my past so easily. Is this a sign of maturity, aging, stress, regret, or something else altogether? I find it interesting. I find it disturbing. And most of all it really irritates me. Much of the time I feel like I have the hard-alcohol blues. Is it depression?


I think depression may fit. And here is why. The ‘older’ word. I am devastated by the idea of hitting 40, and then 50 and 60 and so on. I feel like my youth just slipped away…and I am left with this tired old body that just doesn’t fit my soul. I don’t feel grown up inside – so why do I look so old outside? Is this normal to dread aging so much? Or am I broken? And when I say I dread it – I mean to say that it is paralyzing…all consuming…and I wish I could turn back time more than almost anything.


The odd thing about all of this is that I love my life – my husband, my kids, my job. I love everything about it. I am proud of all that I have accomplished and I don’t want to lose those memories or this life. But at the same time, I feel like time is flying by so quickly and I am not getting enough out of it. I feel like I aimlessly wondered my way through high school and college, and found myself a parent and wife and just sorta continued wondering until here I am – facing 40.


I am not even sure why I hate the aging so much – but oh man, I do. I look in the mirror at wrinkles and I cringe. Whenever I am out around other people I enviously look at the young girls with no veins visible in their legs, no stomach, no lines around their eyes. I see the college kids with their whole lives ahead of them and I miss it… I miss feeling like I have forever to figure out what I want to be when I grow up. I miss feeling young and na├»ve and silly. And I think that makes me sad. Am I crazy?