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Sunday, October 01, 2006

One last day of summer......

What an unbelievable day. One last breath of warm air before the hell known as winter, sets in in Northern Wisconsin. It’s 78 beautiful degrees today and we just got back from an outdoor birthday party at some friends house. Actually, it was not at a house, but at their land. They have 80 gorgeous acres of rolling hills, woods, creeks and a lake – every year, they have a birthday party for their two daughters and everyone brings lawn chairs, 4-wheelers, food and beer. The kids live for this event. For the last two years they have been so lucky with weather. It could easily be 30 degrees, windy and snowing – but it has been sunny, warm and awesome for the last two years. So, the adults all sit around the fire, eat, drink and watch the kids as they 4-wheel around on 80 acres – splashing through the creeks, muddin’ in the bogs and generally having a ball. What kid wouldn’t love that, right? It’s also one of those days where you feel like you should be ‘doing’ something outside, as in work. We certainly have enough work around here that needs to be done before the snow flies and believe me, when we are outside freezing our asses off trying to get it all done – we will wish we would have used our time wiser when the weather was better – but oh, well, such is life.

Our neighbors just had a new baby, their first. This seems really bad, but nowadays when people have kids, my first thought is sympathy. Wow, that sounds really bad. What I mean is, sympathy for the mom. It is such a great time, but such a precarious time too. You want to do everything right, you are getting a lot of unwanted advice, you are tired, possibly depressed, and even though you are so happy about this new child – a lot of women are also really confused. The first thing I want to say to a new mom is: “Go easy on yourself and go with your gut”. So many women overrule their own guts and listen to seasoned moms thinking they must know more even though it doesn’t always feel right to them. So, wrong or right, when I sent the gift, I put in the card just what I typed above. Hopefully, Andrea will know what I mean.

The other thing that came to my mind this week was just how difficult it is just to have a ‘down’ day when you have kids. Now, I am really starting to sound like someone who hates her kids. Nothing could be farther from the truth – my kids are my life – I love all of them dearly, there have just been a few things that have come to my mind lately and I feel the need to get them on paper. I’ll probably regret that decision if they ever read this!

What started this line of thinking was a blog that I read religiously. I would link to it, but she had to stop writing it because her boss and people at work found it and although she didn’t get in trouble, she felt she needed to stop writing. She is a single girl who has a dog and two cats and the reason her blog made me think about having ‘down’ time was this: She is free to do so many things. She is free to watch whatever she wants on TV, listen to whatever music she wants to at home and in the car, she is free to eat whatever she wants and if she doesn’t feel like eating, she doesn’t have to, etc., etc. Now, most people are saying “yeah, no shit – that’s what you can do when you are single”. And I know that to be true – but until you have lost those privileges, you don’t realize how precious they are. There are times when I just want to lay on the couch, eat shit food (certainly not anything organic), and watch bad TV. When you have children, especially children that are not babies and toddlers, it is near impossible. Just as soon as I start to watch something that is inappropriate for the kids, here they come and I have to turn the channel. Just as soon as I get a craving for Ho-Ho’s or Ding Dongs – here come the kids and there goes that. Just as soon as I download the latest Kanye West song and I want to blast it – here come the kids and a song with the “F” word about 40 times isn’t exactly what I want them listening to. So lately I have been mourning my freedom to be me. Yeah, there are certain times when the house is empty and I can have a free couple of hours – but it always seems to end too fast and doesn’t happen often enough. So is the life of a mother of children – it all has it’s trade-offs, right?

I would love to hear any suggestions from other mothers out there – do you have any things you do to give yourself some time to be “bad”?

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