Thursday, June 07, 2007

Holy Crap!!

It hit me as I drove home from running errands this morning...the movers are coming on Monday. All along I've bee saying "yeah, yeah, they'll pack it all up and move it all out, no biggie."

But that's not quite the whole story, is it?

Of course not. That doesn't include this afternoon's foray into party stuff for B's birthday party. Or tomorrow's activities that appear to be running on late into the night. Or the birthday party on Saturday. Or that both my mom and sister will be here for part of it and most likely stay a while. Or church on Sunday, when the kids are singing, B is reading and W is receiving his cotta...

Moves aren't really that big a deal. And moving to Sicily isn't really any different than moving to California.

Except that we have fully 2/3rds of our household goods going into long-term storage, and that means dancing with furniture and watching the movers so that they don't pack up something we really don't want.

I'd like to sigh, but my chest is too tight.

Guess I just need to power on through!

And pray!

Monday, May 21, 2007

What Shrek the Third has taught me

And all that I refuse to learn...

The heavy-handed lesson from S/3rd is that people will label you what they will, but it's only true if you let it be. Shrek is an ogre, but he doesn't need to be an ugly, mean monster. Artie does his own thing, but he's only a loser if he doesn't believe in himself. Sort of Eleanor Roosevelt's "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent," dressed up for a modern audience.

This is a lesson that I insist on. In college I repeated like a mantra that I was there to learn all I could, not necessarily to earn the best grade that I could. I taped Eleanor's words to my desk as I wrote my thesis. I tell it to my kids. I fiercely believe that I am doing what is right for me.

But I can only believe it for so long.

Once a quarter the Alumnae Bulletin finds it's way to my mailbox. Inevitably, I put aside everything else and turn to the class notes. I am fixated on all that these incredibly industrious women do with their time and talent. And I begin to shrink inside of myself. Have I made poor choices? What am I doing here, a stay-at-home mom with too much education? It's not even that I want my achievements posted; at that moment, I can't see any achievements. I can't ask myself if someone would be interested in my lessons from the mom-front. I jump too quickly to castigation: Why am I not in there, tearing up the world doing...something!

That day came last week and I did not feel quite as badly as I read about the doings of the class of '93. I think that's because there really wasn't that much to tell. I am irritated that my notes, the notes I dutifully typed up, painfully reviewed (gosh, I hope my life of volunteer work and homemade bread doesn't sound too dumb), and sent it, didn't get published. But I gave myself a pat on the back that I wasn't letting others' achievements bring me down.

My college classmates are more and more in my position: they have kids, they stay at home, they rely more on their partner's involvement than previously, they are tired, frustrated, and grouchy. I have less to feel bad about; I know those feelings intimately. I even give advice. More than one friend has called me in a panic when their child has been chastised in preschool. They know I've been there and survived. It's a twisted point of pride in our family: there is no way that their kid could be as bad as W was - only he has been kicked out!

So why I am typing this?

By 8:15 this morning, I had checked Joe's haircut and his exam; fed, lunched, and put on the bus both kids; done the dishes and started a load of laundry. Cup of coffee beside me, I proceeded to the read the blogs on my list. There are a few cooking pages, but mostly I read church-y stuff: the news, the hype, the analysis (who says being Episcopalian is dull?!) and the endless list of women-in-religion blogs.

And it hit me. These women, women whom I respect, applaud, and hold up in prayer, feed that inner ogre. I couldn't read very far this morning before I started to hit myself about the shoulders: why don't I write like this; if only I were ordained; everyone else is at the party but me...

Here's the truth.

My path is different. I have never done things the way others do, whether by forethought or by circumstance. I hold up the edges for others: I am a mom who reads the news and talks about it with her kids; I am the mom who has taught her kids to cook; I am the woman who has already been there when it comes to contraception, marriage, babies, children. Because I believe that education is in the learning, whether I get an A+ or not, I am easy-going.

If I feel I am the only one walking, it doesn't mean the path isn't true.

I've spent a lot of this year being quiet, staying small. I think it's time to reclaim my status as trail marker. Not trailblazer: I follow other people. I just want others to know that we can get there, too.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Oh, Happy Day!

Harvard's new president is a Bryn Mawr Alumn.

Is there anything women can not do?

And, my favorite quote of the week, from another rockin' woman, Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori "Life is too short to get too flustered."

I just wish I could remember that more frequently!

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Breaking News - redeemed

Diana Butler Bass has a wonderful essay on Anna Nicole Smith and our commitment to see the face of Jesus in everyone, per our Baptismal Covenant.

Thanks to Rick Lord at World of Your Making!

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Breaking News

First, I am on the "new" blogger - courtesy of my gmail. How fancy-schmancy.

But my inspiration for changing over was due to other "breaking news" and a gripe I have had for a few weeks now.
Is the death of Anna Nicole Smith BREAKING NEWS?!

This is not the first time has headlined a minor incident. And even NPR got into the act yesterday when they (albeit briefly) noted the psychotic break of Lisa Nowak. Good grief, the poor woman was clearly out of her senses, is that worthy of the national news?

I now take on, as my duty, pointing out when we are being unduly assaulted by BREAKING NEWS.

Now back to the happy-happy joy-joy of google-driven blogging.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Eve of St Brigid

I wish I had the skill of giving things away. Instead, I seem to pile them up.

Tonight it is cookies, 100 extra-large chocolate chip and 88 extra-large sugar cookies.

Why did I say I would provide the cookies for Grandparents' lunch?