Waltz In Exile


I’ve been one poor correspondent
7 October 2008, 10:00 pm
Filed under: Family, Goats, Graduate School, Wellness | Tags:

Remember my last post?  Yeah, neither do I.   Other than a couple of amusing bon mots des chevres, I have left you hanging.  But it doesn’t mean you ain’t been on my mind, as the song goes.  I think I’ve talked to some of you. Not in person. And probably not on the phone, either. So not “talked to” in the traditional sense. More like “thought about calling you/IMing you/emailing you but it just seemed like a whole lot of work…” How’s the beginning of the song go, again? Well I tried to make it Sunday, but…I set my sights on Monday…? Yeah, substitute any day for “Sunday” and replace “Monday” with “tomorrow” and that’s more like it. I wrote a post a while back (It was a month ago? An entire MONTH?) about how life was kicking my ass; the problem is, that hasn’t changed. But I’m pretty sure my life shouldn’t feel so undoable every day. I’m not THAT busy; it’s not THAT much work. Yet I am THAT overwhelmed.

I feel incapable ALL. DAY. LONG. Incapable of doing everything that needs to be done when I am as tired as I am.  I am exhausted from all of the caring that goes into parenting.   There is not a single chapter in those pi star dollar sign “What To Expect…” books about the bone-crushing weariness of caring so ampersand much all the ampersand time.  Weary to the point that, when I am not busy with parenting, I am completely petrumbiated.

Don’t bother looking that up. I made it up a long time ago; it’s not a “real word.” (It looks like one, though, right? And it totally sounds like one; a friend of mine thought for months that it was a real word, even though she tried to look it up and couldn’t find it. She thought she was spelling it wrong. THAT’S how much it sounds like a real word.) It’s a state of being wherein you are: tired, but ugh, getting ready for bed is SUCH a production; bored, but you cannot think of anything to do and even if you could, OY, the effort; hungry, but nothing sounds good and even if it did, cooking takes so much TIME… You get the gist.

It’s not apathy; I absolutely care about stuff. Actually, I care a LOT about a LOT of stuff. But the caring is less the motivating variety and more the paralyzing kind. It’s the exact opposite of apathy, except the outcome is the same: stuff doesn’t get done until it demands your attention. Now, the goats do not care how much I care about something, they need (or want) what they need (or want) RIGHT. FREAKING. NOW. This immediacy forces me to move, to act, to do whatever it takes to make the lambs stop screaming goats stop bleating.  I have no choice but to feed/clean/engage the goats, so I do what I must. Petrumbiation, though, hates to be thwarted, so it boomerangs right back as soon as the immediate crisis is over, all smug and self-righteous with “They’re eating a delicious nutritious anack now, but they’ll be done in 15 minutes, so you might as well not start anything new because then they’ll just need (or want) something else.” And this continues until bedtime, sucking the soul will to live motivation right out of me so that when I am finally free of goatly demands for the evening, I no longer want to do anything strenuous at all.  Like straining my brain to figure out what’s even next on the to-do list.  Or, you know, breathing in and out.

So I keep on thinkin’ ’bout you, Sister Golden Hair Surprise caring, all day long, and it’s freakin’ exhausting.  In the past week alone, I have cared about the following goat-related things:

The fact that Goat #1 came home from school last week and announced, quite forlornly, that he didn’t want to go trick-or-treating this year “because that’s the devil’s holiday, Mama.”  I got to care about this one until well past bedtime (my son knows a good delay tactic when he sees one.)  If I’d cared less, I would probably have said “Well, that’s your choice.  Good night.”  But noooooo.  I had to care enough to worry about where he got that idea and whether he believed that Mom and Dad would encourage him to do things they thought were wrong and oh my GOD, I’m practically begging my child to go ask strangers for candy, how weird is THAT?  (That last part might have been less caring and more ADD, though.)

The fact that Goat #2 still has to finish out this week at the current daycare before we can move her back to the loving and supportive (and way less punitive) daycare, and finishing out the week may be too much to ask of my stubborn wee one.  She is miserable.  Her “behavior apple” has been blue every day this week.  Let me translate this for you: blue = incorrigible, sent to office.  I don’t want Goat #2 to think it’s okay to get sent to the office, but then again, I don’t really believe her behavior is being scrutinized objectively at this point, so I don’t want her thinking she’s a bad girl who can’t behave, either.

Getting to be the Tooth Fairy for the very first time ever.  This could have been, should have been fantastic fun.  Instead, it was a disaster.  I was the worst Tooth Fairy EVER.  Completely ineffectual.  Toothless (har, har) if you will.  Forget the fact that this first tooth came out quite suddenly and the WWTF (World’s Worst Tooth Fairy) couldn’t remember where she put the stash of Eisenhower dollar coins (get it? Ike dollars?) she’d been saving for the occasion.  Forget the fact that without the wonders of the Internet, I’d never have thought of a suitable substitute (First teeth lost get PRESENTS!) on my own.  Forget all of that.  Here’s the clincher: I woke him up with all of my frantic searching around because I couldn’t find the damn tooth when I went to take it and leave the present.  So not just toothless “(har, har) if you will”….toothless LITERALLY.  And oh, yeah, busted.  Forget the world, I am the GALAXY’S worst tooth fairy.

Goat #1’s homework load.  There is reading homework every night.  Additionally, thanks to some silly program called “Book It!” there is “Book It!” reading every night that has to be logged (titles of books, amount of time.)  We have to drill spelling words every night for the weekly test.  We also have to drill the writing (printing and cursive) of these words every night.  We have to drill math every night for the weekly test.  I have to sign and date a homework folder every day, noting what we did.  And Sundays and Tuesdays, we have to drill the Bible trivia to prepare for quizzes in Chapel on Mondays and Wednesdays. (This is much less fun now that he no longer thinks James Bond was an apostle.)

Goat #2’s recurring night terrors. It is impossible not to care about this at 3:00 in the morning when my daughter is shrieking to the heavens and stumbling around the hallway. It’s completely impotent caring, though, because I cannot do anything to calm her down. I just have to ride it out until she’s awake enough to be approached and picked up and taken back to bed. This is easily the most exhausting thing on the list. This week, anyway.

When it’s not goat stuff, it’s school and work and cat and house and House, and oh, yes, uberbusy husband is sometimes around and wants attention…. and it’s just too much. So you see, it’s not that I don’t love you. Or miss you. I do. I hate not having hilarious blog posts for you to enjoy every day, but right now it is SO. MUCH. WORK. to even achieve “slightly amusing”…. I just don’t want to post for the sake of posting. This is maybe the only place in my life where I do not have to settle for less than I want, and I care too much about it to ruin that. I hope you’ll understand. Will you love me just a little, just enough to show you care….?

For the record, I have also been busy caring about the upcoming election. These are troubled times, so I’ve been driving myself nuts with personally-dictated due diligence. However, as of today, I am done. And not because of tonight’s debate. It’s because I voted this afternoon. (Yeaaaa, early voting!) I exercised my right to participate in our democratic process and cast my vote for the candidates I believe best represent my political philosophy. I hope you do the same. And no, I don’t mean that I hope you vote for the same people (although that would be GREAT!) – I hope you vote your conscience, and feel good about your choices. And I really hope we all remember that no matter who wins, it doesn’t mean the other side loses. We are all so much more alike than we are different. I think we mostly want the same things for ourselves and our families and our country; we just differ on how to go about achieving them. The current divisive attitude is going to be counterproductive, though. So I want to leave you with one last thought: compromising on means or policies does not necessarily mean compromising your personal values.

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10 Comments so far
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Ya know, I thought about sending you a big fat juicy email, but I didn’t want to bog you down with more stuff to read when I know who already full your plate is.

And then I thought about emailing my number, but thought maybe it might be too stalkerish and take away from time with your family, when you already devoted so much [very appreciated] time to my poli-post.

Just know that this post knocked my socks off! Seriously. Consider it Stumbled!

And thanks so much for the time you devote to your friends in your computer. I know there are days when I’m a better person for it.

Comment by Auds at Barking Mad

Thank you for saying what I’ve been feeling for weeks now. You always have the right words. And though we don’t always agree on everything. We can agree to disagree and have a genuine discourse. Which in and of itself is quite priceless.

Just thank you!

Comment by Deb@BirdOnAWire

This presents for the first lost tooth business is news to me! My kids would have been yanking all their teeth out, loose or not, if it meant they’d be getting goods! They can’t remember to brush their dang teeth daty to day, but they’d never forget they got a gift and try to work that for every lost tooth!

Comment by foradifferentkindofgirl (fadkog)

I really, really wish we had early voting. I did early absentee voting in 2000. HEAP LOAD OF GOOD THAT DID.

And yeah, I know what you mean about “not posting for the sake of posting.” What a mental tug-o-war.

Comment by Cynical Nymph

Your readers (including newer ones like me) will always understand and still be here no matter how frequently or infrequently YOU can be here! And I completely understand the idea of not just posting to post…this is your blog…it’s YOU. You should be selective on what you put out there. (I’m the same way.)

All that being said…this post was worth the wait! I’m sorry about your petrumbiated state. I hope Goat 2’s night terrors die down when she is back in her better school. I’ll stay tuned for further updates on this and everything else…whenever you have the chance. No pressure! 😉

Comment by Lesley

You guys must really like my singing, because you totally asked for this: I do agree there’s times when a woman sure can be a friend of mine….

Comment by waltzinexile

Oh, puleeease. Of course we understand.

Don’t you want to kick the “Devil’s Holiday” people? Seriously. Let’s take one more piece of childhood and crush the joy right out of it. And what’s with the homework? The other day my coworker was telling me about her son’s kindergarten homework. I don’t remember homework until Grade 3, and then it took, like, 5 minutes.

And amen on the one side winning/other side losing mentality. They are playing us, people, and if you buy into that you are letting them.

Man, I am feisty today. Wish I could channel that…

Comment by aliasmother

Oh hang in there! Don’t worry about us. Take care, take time and regroup! We all need it from time to time!

Oh and M had night terrors for a while. We noticed they were related to our stress/moods and also when she would get hot. I have read that red-heads are more physically sensitive and have lower tolerances for pain/discomfort.

((hugs))

Comment by KD @ A Bit Squirrelly

Hello?!? Do you live in my brain? In my life? Me thinks you do.

And that thing about being hungry but nothing seems yummy enough? Well, at least nothing I could make myself. OMFG. My life exactly.

Comment by mspickettoyou

I’ve told you before, I totally understand that you have other stuff that needs taking care of and I will still be here when things calm down. I hope it doesn’t happen right when I get really busy with my project and stuff, lol. Remember to take some time to take care of YOU.

My mother was in this weird “church” group thing led by a crazy woman who decided she was a pastor or something and they decided the Halloween is evil and so my sisters and I couldn’t participate anymore. Not only were we not allowed to trick-or-treat but we could not dress up like the other kids and Mom came and pulled us out of school before the class party! To make up for it they bought us candy and we would go to some church party or something, I never got how that was not celebrating halloween…

I so hope that poor Goat 2 gets over the night terrors thing once she is back in her old preschool! Poor little girl, I want to smack her “teacher”!

Well life is calling me, no milk in the fridge means I need to make a journey to walmart. All my best to you and yours!

Comment by Karen




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