Little Annoyances. Maybe some not so little.

I was paging back through my posts from last January.  Today is the 25th of Jan 2010.  I didn’t write on Jan 25, 2009 last year.  The book ends on either side was an OCD post about children’s messy rooms and losing my mind.  um, memory.  Today I feel like I’m losing my mind.

I told someone recently that I want to let go of a few things in the house and not be all OCD.  I used the kitchen sink as an example.  Seeing dirty dishes, clean to be put away, or recycling – it makes me twitch. 

Yeah……  on second thought, that isn’t going to be the one. 

I’m really doing my best to let A have her room her way.  I’m really trying people, I really am.  She’s back to sleeping in her “tent” on the floor.  Her perfectly good twin bed is piled with clothes (clean and dirty), books and random papers.  It looks like her closet threw up all over the floor.  I am not kidding – the door is open and toys are spilling out onto the carpet.  She constantly loses one of a pair, the connector of whatever toys, 2 pieces of a puzzle.  She sometimes gets really upset about it, to which I respond if you put that thing away like I asked it wouldn’t be lost right now.  Oh – and the multiple glasses of water – OMG the water!  (by the way – I am aware I wrote about this before, it persists)

Part of my current anguish stems from New Year’s.  I went in her room about 9am.  Norman came by around 11:30 to ask what I was doing and now the whole agenda of the day had changed.  And you know what, I was barely through half of the cleaning I wanted to do!  I was able to trash a bunch of stuff that just needed to go.  A joined me at some point and was doing a good job of putting things where I directed her.  We were also able to select a nice sized bag of toys for charity.  She did poke around inquiring about missing stuff.  The only thing I dug out of the trash were a bazillion folded up mini post-it notes.  She went into explaining their purpose in her round-about 6 2/3 year old way.  Cannot tell you what it was, I stopped listening at some point.

I never got back into the room that day to complete my task.

Every time I enter the room now I resist with all my might to start putting things away.  Lost library books should not be my problem to fix.  Misplaced reading lights are not my responsibility.  Scratched CDs floating about the room is not my deal when they start skipping.  Water spills on dolls, blankets and paper with marker drawings are hers to clean up.

How am I doing?  Is this step big enough?  How long until someone is knocking at my door telling me it’s time to let go of another OCD “problem”?


p.s. – if anyone out there knows how to get an original drawing done with a Sharpie off of a wood dresser, please let me know.

Another side of social networking – Support in the rough times

Those people that follow blogs or tweet or facebook or any other form of social networking often find community.  Although I don’t identify myself as a Mommy Blogger – I am a Mom Who Blogs – there is comfort in reading others stories, struggles and victories.  A few months ago I wrote a gut-wrenching tale of my child pleading to die.  The out-pouring of support from friends and strangers alike was overwhelming.  It also made me realize there are limits in sharing online.  The mere thought of someone disagreeing with my parenting approach and throwing insults was also overwhelming.  I made a decision then that sharing that harrowing tale was cathartic.  But unsure if I would ever do it again.

Then in October I had surgery to remove a lump that no medical professional I consulted thought was cancer, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry.  Hm…that reminds me I need to schedule my follow-up ultra-sound.  Again, I decided to post about my experience.  This one was gentler.  I either got the message of “I cannot even imagine” or “I’ve been there, so happy to hear you are OK”.

Back to that social networking thing, I learned about a cancer community site that launched today – Navigating Cancer.  What I think is really cool is you can not only connect with others, it also allows you to track treatment and options.  Kinda like a WebMD or Mayo Clinic but honed in on just one topic.  Maybe another avenue for people to ease themselves into medical records online.  Its coming people, it’s just a matter of when.  I digress…the important thing for me is the source, a place to go where others can understand your struggles and your success.  A friend and I were talking today about how hard it is to be a parent.  You can explain it to non-parents until you are blue in the face, but they still aren’t going to get it.  It really is true you need to walk in someone else’s shoes to understand their pain, their triumphs, and their happiness.

I hope the social networking continues to grow in a positive manner.  Particularly if it stops alienation or misinformation and provides people with more understanding and grace for the rougher patches in life.

Good luck to Navigating Cancer

things my daughter says

It’s fun to watch as your kidlet develops more of their personality and sense of humor.  Living with two, sarcastic, (former) East Coast parents is setting quite the stage for A.  Here are some gems…

Stage:  School lunch.  Parent helper in the classroom.  We had pieces of vanilla/chocolate chip cake in the freezer to pop into her lunch box from time to time, when we’re feeling generous…
Helper – wow A, that sure looks like a good treat!  What is that?
A – My daddy calls it cake.

Stage:  Woodland Park Zoo, somewhere along a path.  Black crow on the fence.  Norman has affectionately named two crows that hang out by our house Fred & Ethel.  We like to joke that they follow us around.
Me – Hey A, look, Fred came with us to the zoo today!
A – (exasperated) No Mommmmm….that’s Ethel.  Jeez!

A – Why do you even say Maybe?!  Maybe always means No!!
Me – (no response)

Stage: Dinner time. Norman and I are having our “adult” conversation after A has already been excused.  She has been playing around with a loose tooth for a few days.  A comes running downstairs mumble-screaming…
A – People!!  Hello people!  People look at this!!
A is holding a small bloody tooth in her hand, slobbering, with a big-ass cheesy grin

Stage: Picking up A from the YMCA talking about the new year, 2010.
A – How do you say the year?  Like, is it 2-0-1-0?  Or something else.
Me – Typically people would say either twenty-ten or two-thousand ten.
A – Wow.  So, what happens when it’s two-zero-nine-nine?  What’s the next year?
Me – That would be 21-hundred, or two-thousand-one-hundred.  But people will more likely say 21-hundred
A – Will I be alive then?
Me – You could be, you would be pretty old, but you could be.  Not me and Daddy though, we won’t be around then.
A – So then, what happens at two-nine-nine-nine?  What’s the next year?
Me – That would be the year three-thousand.
A – NO WAY!  That’s like – infinity!  It just keeps going?
Me – Yes, the years keep ticking by, at some point, the year will have 5 numbers in it instead of 4.
A – So will I be alive in the year 3000?
Me – I don’t think so.  You would be almost a thousand years old.  Unless there is some crazy science-technology thing sometime soon, you won’t be alive then.
A – Good!

I should write these down more often.

January Quote

January’s Quotable Calendar wisdom…

True happiness lies within you!

Og Mandino

Hoo Boy is that a loaded statement!  I’ll save my 2009 Thoughts for later, it will take more time and contemplation.  Let’s start here and not get frozen in “writers block”.

If you were to ask my husband, he may just say there is no happiness within me.  He constantly asks me if I’m happy and it drives me freaking nuts!  I’m not one of those people, nor will I ever be (or desire to be) one of those people.  Don’t get me wrong, I have no problem with cheery optimists.  Those people don’t get on my nerves.  (Unless of course I’m in a really pissy mood and just want to be angry thank you very much!)  In fact, those people are often pleasant to be around and can lift my spirits.

It’s not that I would mind being cheery optimist… hmmmm…

First of all, never in my life have I been one of those people.  39 years on this earth and you think I could just flip a switch on that one?!  I’m still riddled with Catholic guilt and I left the church 23 years ago (for those mathematic types, that means I’ve been out of the church longer than I was in it and I still have the guilt!)  Even if I made a concentrated and continuous effort to be one of those people, I’m still not going to be one of them.  Think of how much work and effort it would take to just get to that level.  It exhausts me thinking about it.

Then there’s the whole depression thing…thanks family genes!  Yes, I am medicated.  Yes, I’ve been medicated and gone off and back on again in my life – a few times actually.  I don’t think I know a depressed person that has achieved those people status.  It’s enough to be in life and enjoy the day and family and friends without adding cheer and sunshine on top of it.  Boy – that sounds pessimistic huh?  But seriously – if you have dealt with any level of depression you know that some days it’s all you can do to get out of bed in the morning and go to work and deal with people and eat normally and and and!  I’m not very good at masking myself on those days.  Thankfully, they don’t happen as often and I get past them a lot quicker than I ever did before.  Some people in my life are really good at masking, medicated or not.  I don’t know how they do it.  Honestly.  That must be so much work on top of the ands.

I’m content to be where I’m at.  That is usually how I respond to Norman.  He asks me if I’m happy and I say I’m content.  Then he says he wants me to be happy.  Well you know what?  I don’t want to be happy – I want to be content.  Yes, yes – it’s just words.  We each come to the table with our own dictionaries and just as hard to insert the other’s definition after so many years.  So maybe – just maybe – if I can keep from freaking out every time he asks me if I’m happy, then he can learn me being content is the desired goal. 

Maybe.  I’ll start today.