Friday, March 12, 2010

The Vital Village

It was 4pm; I knew that Jon would NOT be walking through the door in 15 minutes; he would be home late today. Today of all days, I thought to myself . . . I was utterly exhausted. Thanks to the events of the afternoon, lying on my bed for a moment after my desperately desired shower (which took place five hours following my workout) was a luxury I longed for, but should have ignored. The kids piercingly playing downstairs pounded in my ears. I needed to check on them, but the deliberation of the day made me feel like lead, immobile and heavy laden, unable to deal with the definite defiance I would encounter upon descending the stairs. I allowed myself to fall backward and let the softness of the mattress catch my collapse. In that instance I pondered the life of a single parent, something I usually avoided addressing . . . and I hated every glimpse I was granted. My heart began to race as I imagined day in and day out being like this, with no one to give me respite and reprieve, a life without leisure. I reflected on how much I underappreciated my indulgences – my free time, my quiet time, my sleep time – time that would be overtly opulent if I was doing this alone. I thought about those parents with no partner, or with a partner who doesn't help, and then I thought about my life as such . . . no blogging, no girls' night out, and no cute crocheted scarves I made myself. I knew the effect of such an existence: life on loony lane.

On this very day for which I was speaking, I made the following post on my facebook status update, "[I am] starting to think that losing my mind is imminent and that my kids are collaborating to ensure it happens." This is at 12:30pm, three-and-a-half hours before the aforementioned reflection. Yes, it had been one of those days . . . a day I had to spank both my children (something at one time I swore I would never do), a day I sent them both to their respective rooms and made them stay there for far too long, a day that I sounded like the bellowing banshee from hell, and a day where sending the kids to boarding school was looking rather lovely. After Aidan almost escaped our motor vehicle in motion making my heart hesitate before its next beat, and Emie refused to poo on the potty leaving me to stare at the walls of our bathroom for a seemingly endless amount of time, I began to envy the mother who got to leave the house for work and perhaps took a piss whenever she liked, and I could no longer imagine missing my adoring angels once they were in school. I was reminded of my humanity and affronted with the admonition that superwoman did not define me in the least – and damn it all – this selfish musing mommy needs all the help she can get!

I love the expression, "it takes a village," because it's entirely accurate. I refuse to be one of those mom-warriors who proclaim to do it all, because I don't. Without the help I get from Jon, family, and friends, I would be a never-ending nonsensical nutto. I know this because I briefly go berserk when denied the occasion to do the things I want and love. It's in times like these that I am resentful of my kids' clean plates when mine is full of cold food still waiting to be devoured. These are the moments that make me remember if it wasn't for my hubby and hobbies, I would crawl into a hole and decline to come out. It is in these instances that I become the one who writes the blogs containing the raving, ranting, and whining before you. Yet, in spite of all this, I stand by a statement in a previous blog post: staying home with my kids is not a bad gig . . . most days aren't this agitating. Nevertheless, without the village of support I eagerly accept at every turn, I would no doubt want to trade in this profession for post outside my abode.

So after about 2 or 3 minutes of these meandering meditations, I reminded myself of my good fortune and bumped my bushed bum off the bed. I endured the entreaties about eating soon and placed a pot of water on the stove. I refilled the kids' plates with a second helping of spaghetti before I finished my first, and gave Jon a grin of gratitude when he walked through the door. I sighed as my stress began to cease, my help was home and everything in the world started to seem sound once more.

1 comment:

  1. I love this post!!! It is exactly what I needed to hear after the week I have had. I am also very blessed with a husband, family and friends who help me maintain my sanity as a "stay-at-home" mom. Yet, I am not as appreciative as I should be for those blessings. Thanks, Amber!