I have a little problem and it’s called “I have too many things in my head to form a single blog post”. So this is going to be random.
1. I started watching my niece during the day since my sister’s maternity leave is up. I volunteered for the position back in October when she found out that her current daycare couldn’t take the baby (because of ratios) until the fall. My sister was all in a panic over it and I volunteered since I am just here sitting on my dead ass all day. Okay, that’s not true. Entirely. But mostly. My house became busy with a wee 8-week-old babe and my trusty assistant, Amelia. That little girl is in heaven, for sure. All she has ever wanted was a baby sister (or brother) to mother. And my niece just watches her all day, even when Amelia is doing something else.
What have I learned from this experience? I am done having children. I mean, I am a woman of a certain age. Geriatric in OB land. But I have been saying for years that one of the tragedies in all of this is that I never intended for Amelia to be my last. I didn’t get to savor her baby days. I wanted to see at least one more of our babies use the gear and clothes and wee diapers we had collected for the other children. It wasn’t to be. And now it’s too late. I suppose with the right kind of support (read: a wedding), I could be persuaded but there’s no way I’d go it alone. And I’ve stopped wanting it. I love having bigger kids. I love leaving the house sans diaper/bottle/sling/bucket carseat/change of clothes for all involved.
Also, she is bottle-fed. Which is fine. Totally. But my children were breastfed and I now know that it was in large part because I was way too lazy to deal with bottles. The mixing, the washing of the bottles, the dribble and spitup. No thanks. I know now that I was pretty lucky in the world of breastfeeding. No supply issues, no latch issues. I liked it. I was home and didn’t have to go back to work so there was no reason to introduce a bottle with any frequency. It’s just a different way to care for a child. This baby starts to fuss out of hunger and is full on screaming at me within 30 seconds. Kind of like a fire drill. Five times a day. Like I said, I’m okay being done with babies.
2. Through the beauty and magic of Facebook, an old friend from college contacted me the other night. He is a filmmaker and screenwriter on a smallish scale. He’s had this idea for a documentary floating around in his head and asked me to consult on it a little bit. The idea is this: Do you remember the last words said to a loved one before they die? How do you feel about those words?
We went back and forth. I don’t know if I helped him at all because I feel like I did get a chance to say goodbye in a roundabout sort of way. My last words to him (that he heard) were “I love you.” So I was one of the lucky ones but what about people who just got into a fight and said angry words? Or what about the mundane reminders and the ordinary days? I finally told him that all of us, no matter the reaction to those words (regret, anger, peace, fear…), we all thought we would have more time. And we didn’t. There was no way to say it all. Those words were not for the dying. They were for us; they were for those that survived and those that were forced to go on.
I don’t know if anything will come of it (although knowing him, it will come around) but it is certainly interesting enough. Hopefully there will be more to report.
3. I am quite antsy about the prospect of spending yet another year at home. I have been home for nearly seven years and I have had it. Done. I am done. But my baby isn’t ready for school and I said I would stay home until everyone was in school. The plan, six months ago, was to do four semesters of grad school and get my teaching certificate and get my own classroom of theatre/speech/ creative writing punks. The schedule and school year mirrors that of my children and everyone is happy.
But now I can’t start school this summer. Paying for school is one thing; I thought I could swing it. But paying for childcare for the summer would break me in half and then even just one kid in full-time daycare in the fall is not a feasible option. Once again, it comes down to finances. And I hate that. And I don’t want to wait.
I have other options. I can apply for my stagehand union card and go work shows as often as they need me. It will be feast or famine with odd hours and unreliable income with no benefits. That is one route. The other is to get a job and put myself back into the working world. But then we’re back to daycare but, hopefully, that would be figured into the budget with the take home pay. I don’t even know what I would do at this point except keep my feelers out for one of the many local arts organizations to have a position open up. The right one could take months at best.
Like I told someone tonight (in the context of getting a job) I’m not looking for Mr. Right…I’m just looking for Mr. Rightnow. I don’t need perfect. I need to get back to feeling like a productive citizen first and then possibly reconsider. On the other hand, when you know you just know. And maybe I’ll know. Maybe this is the time and I just need a place.
All I know is that these walls are closing in on me. You know, not in a scary way. I’ll deal if I do have to wait a year and then continue with the original plan. I won’t like it. But I know I can do it.
4. I miss Fat Camp. (For the record, that feeling took less than a week.)
5. I’m still considering making this blog into some sort of publishable work. A book or…something. I started with post #1 and I have worked through February 2009, reading every one. Reading every comment.
I know I wrote it all and I’m glad that I did. There was so much in there that would never have been thought about again had I not written it out. There are whole days and memories that would be lost by now. There’s something to be said for just getting it all out there, even if it is quick and dirty.
Is it a wonder that I have a coherent thought in my head? This is just the tip of what is knocking around in there.