Sorry about my absence, my face is red as I type this…I didn’t forget about the weigh-in posts, I will try to do one this week but I am down a few pounds from the last one! Also, I found a job and have been working full-time!
When I was a kid, the days seemed to drag out forever. Getting home from school around 4, I would do my homework and still have time to play outside with friends, watch tv, run to the mall with my mom. I don’t remember feeling rushed or pressed for time at all.
Now, though, I feel like I have crossed into another dimension in which time is compressed into thin, dense slices. My days at work move fairly quickly, but they are still draining. I am usually home between 4:30 and 5. And then it’s like I slip into a wormhole and it is suddenly time for the kids to go to bed.
I never wanted to be one of those always-on-the-go families. I like being home. I like the gentle rhythm that comes from the dryer running while I sip my coffee and load the dishwasher, knowing the Sunday paper is waiting for me. I like watching movies together with the kids, laughing at our pets, snacking from our pantry. I don’t need to be traveling all over the place to feel like we are “doing something.”
Yet, I signed the kids up for fall sports. Dumb, dumb, dumb.
The boy is in soccer – he did not ask to play sports, he is not athletic, team sports are not his thing, huge mom FAIL. He has one hour-long practice during the week at 6pm and one game every Saturday. Games are less than an hour and start anywhere from 10am to 3pm. And he is no longer crying at practice or games, so there has been progress.
The girl is doing t-ball softball. She asked to play this, even though I thought she’d be more of a soccer player or cheerleader or diva or something. For some reason, shitty boring-ass t-ball is the bigger time suck. Two games during the week that last an hour each, plus one hour-long practice on Saturdays. The girl does not like t-ball any more because it is “too boring.” She would love it if she could be at-bat the entire time. As soon as she moves into the field, she starts pointing out things she sees in the clouds and fills her mitt with dirt.
Trying to get the kids to their sports after working a full day, while also getting them fed and ensuring that homework is done, well, it is like another full-time job. I honestly do not know why any sane person would continue to volunteer for this lifestyle? This past Thursday, for example, the kids’ bus didn’t drop them off until 4:45 (a whole other issue, school gets out at 3:35!) and there was soccer practice at 6 and a t-ball game at 7. It takes us about 20 minutes to get to the fields, meaning I had about 45 minutes to get them dinner, get homework done, and get them ready to go. (off-topic: getting an 8 year-old ready for soccer is like prepping a surgeon for an appendectomy – and why are shin guards such a bitch to get on?) I managed this miraculous feat by falling back on my small stash of crappy microwave meals (chicken nuggets and potato smiles in 3 minutes? hell yes). Desmond had to bring his homework and finished it during Ella’s softball game. We got home at 8:30. I got them ice cream on the way home because the day was such bullshit, so as soon as we got in the front door I sent them off for pajamas and tooth-brushing – sticky hands and faces all around. The next morning Desi still had chocolate around his mouth. I.Am.Awesome.
I have ridden both sides of the motherhood bench – employed mom and stay-at-home mom – and I do not think one is easier than the other. Most of the struggle, I’ve come to realize, is time. As an SAHM, the struggle is how to fill the time, how to use the time, how to enjoy the time. As an employed mom, the struggle is how to manage the time, how to find the time, how to make the most of the time you DO find.
I don’t have any answers here. Sigh. I don’t regret getting the kids into these activities – they have gotten them outside, they are learning about team sports, and for Desi it has been a huge confidence boost. I just need to figure out the time.
Or maybe I should just homeschool?