Wow. November 2012. That was the date of my last post. 15 months ago! I could have had a baby! But I didn't.
I have all the same babies, no new ones, just my three, all the same activities, the same silly little problems which I reserve the right to complain about when I feel like venting, you could hashtag them as first world problems and when I think that, I get embarrassed and stop usually. I also have the same prayers and hopes as usual (mostly to just be a better mom, wife, sister, friend or general person than I was today, because I usually end the day knowing I could have done better - WAY BETTER - it doesn't help that I'm a morning person, and I'm at my worst as the day winds down and I want to crawl into bed before everyone else, but please...excuses, excuses - just be BETTER!) and I still have the same overwhelming feeling that I live a completely blessed and luxurious life. Things are still the same. I think I even look the same, and I've only had my hair cut twice in 15 months, so I'm pretty sure of that. I just forgot, in these 15 months, that I had a blog. I've been busy. (We took a trip, we ran a race, we changed grades, we've gone to lots of Dodgers games, played a lotta ball, had a lotta fun, we had birthdays and Christmases, great grandma broke her hip and healed, we hopefully all got a little wiser along with older.)
I also don't read ANYONE's blogs anymore, and I blame that on two things: Google Reader being discontinued and taken away from me as one of my favorite apps, and my laziness. So it took a girl named Shari to ask a question about reading blogs, and a girl named Stephanie to remind Shari and me that we hadn't updated in a while, for me to come back and figure out my password. It took me three tries. I couldn't even remember my blog password! Ugggh. I've been busy, and the part of my brain that used to store passwords has been filled up with other stuff in the past 15 minutes, none of which I could bring back out of my brain because it's probably useless information. Other information was lost, I'm sure of it. I've been busy. (And I'm slowly remembering which blogs I used to read and adding them to my new feedly app on my phone. I LOVE it.)
Then after I say, "I've been busy," I feel really guilty. I have been busy, and I like to be busy. There's nothing that's on my plate that I want to scrape off. But I feel guilty, because what if someone who is "really" busy reads that statement and thinks, "ya right, girrrrl, you don't even know what busy is." (And that lady saying that to me, hypothetically, is pointing her finger and moving her head around in a little circle, lettin' me have it.)
Sometimes I write out the activities of my day in an email to my grandma, just so she can have a little taste of what we're up to around here, and as I list it out I think, "How in the world did we do all that in one day?" To be honest, I also send it to her as a little bit of a "look, Grandma, I do a lot during the day, even though I don't use my college degree like you wish I did!" She says I burn the candle at both ends. I love it when she says that. It's so cute. It's one of my favorite things she says. I run into lots of people who say I'm "too busy." I don't agree, I just happen to put off an "in a rush" kind of vibe, and people have sort of canned responses for that kind of person. I hear "slow down," a lot, or "take a break." It's funny. I mean, what else are they going to say at that moment? They just want to say SOMETHING. I get it. I do it all the time. There are girls I say those same words to! That's small talk, what you do as a busy mom who is running past another busy mom on the way to your next gig.
Being "busy" as a mom who doesn't work, I feel like if a working mom says she's "busy" that's way more relevant than my busy, because I AM allowed to blow off a whole day if I want to and not have to worry about being fired. That's my super duper job security, although that's horrible and lazy sounding. It's also a huge luxury. See, I live a life of luxury. So I feel like I'm careful who I say "I'M SO BUSY" around. I hear my husband tell his friends or coworkers things like, "She's busier than I am, and I have a full time job." And I take that as a compliment sometimes, but I've also had a discussion with him before where he sweetly said, "You are so busy, you're kinda defeating the purpose of being a stay-at-home mom!" I think he's right, and that one hit me hard. Things that are true hit you harder. And as I said before, I don't have anything I want to scrape off my full plate. I just want to be BETTER at the stuff on my plate so they don't take me as long to do. That's my dream.
Sometimes I see people I haven't seen in a while and they ask me what I'm up to. I just say I'm up to the usual stuff, because they get it. They're moms, too. They're up to all of my usual stuff as well, if not more. I'm not doing anything they haven't done or won't do soon. I'm sure in ways they're more busy and less busy than I am. I'm sure I don't do any more than them, but the way I deal with the list I have that may be the difference. I'm not calm. I'm not together. I am scattered and forgetful and wound up and I always think I'm late and I'm always in a hurry and always hurrying people up around me. I'm racing around doing so many things that overlap and overwhelm me, sometimes it overwhelms me just for a second, only because I think I'll leave a kid behind somewhere, or forget something major, or miss something big. I'm a hurry with fear and forgetful mixed in. But I'm not oblivious. I know what I have. And once I look in the rearview mirror and do the headcount of just three kids and see that they're all there and have seatbelts on, that's when I'm calm. I think I'm the MOST calm in the car, driving from thing to thing. Because all my chickens are there in my mobile coop, we can't turn back now, and I have a captive audience, and I'm choosing to subject them to old N'SYNC music and we're all loving it. But anyway.....
I live a busy life of luxury - I'm busy because I get to be EVERYWHERE and see everything and I wouldn't trade that for being bored or having more time to myself or being more organized if it meant I had to miss stuff. The things I'm involved in mostly happen to be things that my kids are involved in somehow, and I'm only a few steps away, and they know that. Their clothes may not be folded right out of the dryer and their uniform may feel a little damp every now and then as we try not to be late for a game. And sometimes I have to convince someone that their socks match, but I know the truth. But I'm at their game, watching most of it as I talk to other moms. And I'm at their school picking them up and asking them about their day. And I'm home packing their lunches and drawing on their lunchbags and picking their outfits and doing their hair, and I have to remember THAT IS WHAT I WANTED. That is what I ALWAYS WANTED! It was my dream to stay home with them, and I do. And I have a good guy to thank for that.
A few days ago, I filled up my car with gas, bought a new small kitchen appliance, someone gave me a new dining room set for free, I was strong enough to move it, I had a cute shirt on, it was sunny and warm and felt like summer, I found something I'd been looking for, I was driving a nice car, an older fellow blew me a kiss from the sidewalk as I was stopped at a crosswalk and let him walk across, a kid got an award, my husband said something really nice, I felt really good and healthy and I wasn't sneezing, congested or tired, I finished a small job I needed to get done that felt like a big job because I had procrastinated, I bought a present for someone I love, my stomach was full, I got a nice phone call and someone listened to me and heard me, my favorite song finally came on the radio and I got to listen to it ALL THE WAY THROUGH, I found a great sale, I wore peep toe wedges and didn't die, noticed a pretty cloud and blooming flowers, and the day just couldn't have been more shoved-in-my-face-happy to remind me of the very easy and comfortable and blessed and luxurious life I live and the people I share it with. Because of God, and because of who my husband is, to always want me "taken care of," I feel VERY well taken care of, so I have time to enjoy the little things. I have no excuse not to extend that to others, no matter how "busy" I make myself.
(And stop - hold up - uh oh! Suddenly, this reminds me of that quote that says something like, "Stop the glorification of busy." Hahaha. That' so funny. Sorry, I have to glorify busy a little bit. I've gotten out of MANY a situation I didn't want to enter, or shouldn't get into, because I was able to say, "I'm busy," and not feel like I was lying, because I wasn't.)
That happy, in-my-face day renewed me and made me just want to be an all around better caretaker of everyone around me. I'm busy with that now, but that's always been on my plate, I had just pushed it aside and it got kinda crusty. So instead of complaining at how busy I am, or complaining that people don't see what I'm doing for them or appreciate anything, instead of worrying that I'm doing too much wrong, I'm going to have to be happy at my busy - it's hard work making people feel "taken care of," but when I shove the clothes off my bed tonight without folding them and putting them away, I won't beat myself up about it. Someone, somewhere, better feel a little more taken care of. That's my hope.
Busy, gotta run.