Friday, October 26, 2007

Forget it

It's Sunday morning, 10:30ish, I'm without a shower, teeth are brushed, my hair is pulled back in a headband in a semi effort to look like I can be seen to let the dogs out, but nothing more. I'm doing a month's worth of ironing, the kids are dressed but hair isn't brushed, not sure if their teeth are either. Clothes are spread all over the house as I'm working to finally pack away the summer wardrobes for three kids. The doorbell rings and my husband offers to go get it.

He opens the door to find a woman dressed as I would call "business casual". Make up, hair done, and dressed for a meeting or calling on a friend you haven't seen in a few years. He asks if he can help her and she asks if this is Jennifer's house. He replies with a simple yes, and continues to just stare. "Well, we have a play date", she says. "By all means, come on in".

They walk to the back of the house and I holler, "who was it?" Michael coolly replies, "hey, your play date is here". Of course the first thing she says is "oh, did you forget?" Now this is where I wish I could do so many things over, other than have remembered in the first place. I say, "oh no, of course not". Why, Why, Why? Why couldn't I have just said, "oh my, I'm so sorry, but wow, I'm so happy to see you and glad you remembered". But instead I continued to put on this act that I was fully ready for her arrival. Also, if there is one thing I can't do well, it's act. I was so embarrassed to have forgotten, but now I'm even more horrified that I tried to cover it up. Maybe it's because I don't know her too well. Or maybe because she is always so well put together that I didn't want to seem so flaky. But instead I just looked like a fool that can't admit to having forgotten something. I really wish I could do the whole morning over again. First I would have taken a shower. Second, I would have looked at the calendar. If I failed those two, then I would have at least been honest and said, sorry, I'm so forgetful now that I'm working again- who am I kidding, I've always been a little forgetful. In the past as a stay at home mom, my few scheduled social interactions played a bigger part in my life and now I try to focus on way to many things. I beat myself up over the things I have forgotten since going back to work, like bringing an apple to school for my preschooler's project, or sending a birthday card to my cousin who ALWAYS remembers mine. Is it really working that is making me forget since I'm spread so thin, or am I just getting older and more forgetful? Heck, I turn 40 in a few weeks, what can I expect?

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Getting Your Kindergardener to Talk- Easy Right?

The first month of school came and went and I had no idea how my daughter was spending her time. She would get off of the school bus and I would have a pile of questions waiting for her only to be followed with a one word answer. I was feeling lost. My oldest child has a life of her own and doesn't want me to be part of it, I thought this only happened in the teen years.

I tried a few things. The younger two girls and I set up a tea party for when she came home in the late afternoon. We sat around drinking tea and eating a snack while we talked about anything but details of school. "What are you learning?", "Did you talk about any numbers or letters?", "What was your favorite part of the day?". These were all questions met with, "I can't remember".

We played a game of Zingo together hoping the time would lead to dialogue, but no luck there.

Dinner time. Not a chance. Not a story to be shared other than what kids got into trouble. So there we have it, out daughter at school and the only thing she is learning about is what kids to stay away from if she wants to stay out of trouble.

A few weeks later after story time and everyone is tucked into bed an idea popped into my head. If she could tell me stories about school, then I would lie in bed with her while she talked about her day. Amazing how fast her memory recovered. It is now her favorite part of our bedtime routine, and mine too. Sure I have fallen asleep since the stories are so long, but at least I'm getting a view into her day. I will have to clarify that not all of the stories are real, since she makes some up just to keep me in her bed, creative thinking gets some points, but it seems to be a big part of our quality time together at the end of the day. Last week she ended the discussion with, "tell me about your day at work". Wow, that is really desperate, and could easily put us both to sleep, but suddenly I realized where she gets her inability to remember the day, or realized there is little to talk about, or little worth talking about.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Maybe It's Not Work That I Love So Much

My husband pointed out this weekend and I have thought about endlessly ever since, that it really isn't the fact that I'm working that has lifted my cloudy fog, it's change. I am a change addict, if I can be bold enough to self diagnose my problem.

Work provided so much change for me over the years. I would work a year and a half to two years in one position, then they would give me a new job, so things never got old. I was in a constant state of change. As soon as I figured out how to do my job, they threw another one my way. I was always challenged.

Two and a half years home with the kids and I started getting a little stir crazy. Sure, I was constantly challenged, almost on an hourly basis, but it was starting to become obvious that I was never going to be able to master this job. It's the hardest one out there, at least with my kids it was. Although I image there are mom's out there that have it all figured out, but I'm not sure I need to meet them.

So for the change addict in my, my life at work is great. It's stirred things up for awhile. I've already figured out this new job (since it's what I did before I opted to stay at home), so I see it getting old fast, and that will be just in time for the eight month project to be over and I'll be back to Stuntmom, the stay at home Mom again.