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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

This too shall pass....sometimes WAY too quickly!

I'm at a crossroads in my life.  I have spent the better part of 20 years being a mommy.  It started with the sleepless nights (and days, my oldest literally never slept!), then the days where my entire day was scheduled around naptime.  I used to have maybe 2 hours a day that I could leave my house when someone wasn't napping.  Then there were the playdates, those were some of the best days of my life, meeting my friends and their kids either at each other's houses or the park or Chuck E Cheese, or Discovery Zone.  I loved that time in my life.  Then I had baby number 2 and it started all over again.  Only adding to that was preschool and all of that fun stuff.  I also added baseball, soccer, scouts, Religious Education classes that I taught, PTA positions,volunteering non stop at school, coordinating the Altar Servers at church, the list is endless!  Then I home schooled for 7 years.  In those years I added baby #3 and moved across the country.  I then added dance classes, more baseball and eventually school again.  I never had a moment to myself during that time.  There were days when I would have to sit in the parking lot of the grocery store for 2 hours on the phone to get some privacy.  My kids wondered how it could take 2 hours to get butter.  

While I still don't have any privacy (my kids question all my comings and goings) I have so much free time lately it's culture shock!  No more travel baseball (due to injury and school ball), no more dance (for now, it will be back) and my oldest 2 drive now so I don't have to take them anywhere.  It was shocking enough to be able to go out without worrying about a babysitter when they got old enough to watch their sister, but this freedom is crazy.  I'd be lying if I didn't say it freaked me out at first.  I felt lost.  I didn't know what to do with myself.  I spent a lot of time puttering around the house.  I was bored.  I HATE that word and I never thought in a MILLION years I'd EVER be bored. See, a lot of my friends are still in the throws of mommyhood that I was in not too long ago (six months to be exact) so I have a lot of time to myself.  Now would be the time to rekindle the romance in my marriage, only THIS is a big reason why I ended my marriage--the thought of having all this time with JUST my ex sent me into a dry heaving cold panic.  I'd rather be alone.  In fact I needed to have this time to myself.  I've since joined a bunch of groups of people that are in the same stage in their life in hopes of meeting some kindred spirits.  It's just taken me a bit of time to adjust to the fact that it's okay to think about myself :)

I see all these parents complaining and stressing and going through the motions of what I went through the last 20 years.  They seem so harried and can't find a free minute to themselves.  I wish I had know then what I know now.  I would have enjoyed it more.  I did enjoy it for the most part, I'm not gonna lie.  It was only the times when 3 things hit on 1 day that I would stress.  I enjoyed spending time with my kids when they were little and truth be told I still prefer their company to anyone elses.  Dinners together have now become like gold, because with the older ones working and their social stuff it's not that easy.  What I love is that my boys treasure it too.  They know when it's possible to have family time we take it.  Although I'm not as much a part of the details of their lives anymore I know that this is just another phase of my life and of theirs.  They are in the spring and summers and I am in the autumn.  I'm still reminding myself to enjoy each and every stage and finally not taking it all too seriously.  After all.....this too shall pass <3

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Grateful for music....

I love technology.  I know people say it’s a curse, double edged sword and all that jazz but I am a technology junkie.  I am especially grateful for my IPOD.  I was in the car for 6 ½ hours yesterday and with my IPOD as my companion the hours flew.  I didn’t have to listen to the same song twice, there were no commercials, no channel flipping, no songs I didn’t like-it was bliss!  I remember taking trips as a family when I was a child.  They were never long trips, usually just to visit one of my Aunts, but the 5 of us in a sedan with no air conditioning and only the radio with my father in control of the channels- oy vey!  One trip in particular stood out.  My sister got my dad to put on “normal” music and she was singing along and my brother burst out laughing and said to her “Please, Deb!  Stop singing, you couldn’t carry a tune if it had a handle!”  I was sitting in between them, on the dreaded hump in the back seat.  I cracked up laughing and then felt bad a few seconds later---how mean!  But dear God, so true!  I love my sister like no other, but the girl can’t sing—what I would have given for an IPOD or a Walkman or even just earplugs back then!
           My kids have always been good on car trips.  Hell, we drove across the country when Emily was almost a year old and it was cake.  We are not big on talking in the car on long trips.  We all pretty much settle in with our respective IPods’ or video games (not me, clearly I’m driving, remember lol) and have a quiet, contented ride.  Yesterday I felt such a range of emotions.  Those songs transported me to so many different times in my life.  The words and melodies brought memories of different people and my mind was flooded with all kinds of feelings.  I sang happily along with Katy Perry, Pink, and Lady Gaga.  I was reminded of my sister when “Beach Baby” came on and reminded of how we used to sing along with the Carpenters in her blue dodge swinger when “Top of the World” came on.  Boz Scaggs and Billy Joel remind me of the summer of 1980 spent in my brother’s truck driving all over Long Island.  Erasure conjures up memories of driving around in my friend Kim’s black Jetta on our lunch hour in the early 90s.  I cried when “Right Here” by Miley Cyrus came on, reminded of my niece Jessie when she left after a visit and told Danny that was their song.  “The Nearness of You” will always make me think of my parents dancing cheek to cheek at whatever wedding or party we would be at and my dad would request that song for my mother.  “Club Can’t Handle me”---my niece Katey’s sweet 16 party, lighting her candle and driving Danny to baseball-he had to listen to that song before every game!  “Babe” “Greased Lightening” “After the Loving”, -my first love. 

           Music has the ability to invoke so many emotions in me.  Yesterday, I felt the full spectrum of emotions during the day.  My IPOD certainly helped that along.  I remembered singing to my babies when they were little, I was brought back to heartbreaks I’ve had through my life, happy times dancing in the kitchen with the boys when they were little-which made me laugh and cry.  I’ll never forget when I realized that music had a huge impact on me emotionally.  I took a quiz that was about your senses and what soothes you.  I never realized that sounds and smells were so effective at soothing my soul.  How sad is that, that I was so removed from what made ME happy that I needed a quiz to make me realize that lighting a candle and playing certain music could put me in a happy place almost instantly.  And luckily, with my IPOD on hand, I have 1200 hand selected songs that can take me wherever I want to go.