Friday, May 27, 2011

Here's To You, Mrs. Robinson

Yesterday, my baby graduated as part of the Class of 2011. There were royal blue caps and gowns, red, white and blue tassels, visiting relatives, a slide show and pomp and circumstance, all to send him off into the great future that is bearing down upon him. In a word: kindergarten.

Yes. My son graduated from Preschool.

And it is weird.

For eight years I have been in Mommy Realm, where I was only allowed to work as long as it was some type of job that twisted and curved itself somehow into my fucked up Mommy schedule. So I worked from home off and on, did some freelance writing, then this year actually ventured out during the morning hours to a job OUTSIDE my little Bubble of Home, only to rush away each day at lunch so that I could pick up my little guy from school. I had no schedule except THEIR schedule, left to scrape together what I was able from the perimeter of their busy little lives. It was frustrating and irritating and, frankly, pissed me the hell of a great deal of the time. But after eight years of knowing nothing else, I'm left realizing that as I view my Elementary School Parent future in the fall, I'm not exactly sure where to go from here.

THIS is what I was thinking as I watched my great big, five-year-old accept his diploma. (Well, that and "HOLY SHIT. He's the SHORTEST KID IN HIS CLASS! HOW CAN THAT BE? He's nearly a complete year YOUNGER than some of those kids and he's still TINY. I GAVE BIRTH TO A MIDGET!" -- Side note: I saw an African American midget dressed in camouflage at the grocery store today. My weekend HAS BEEN MADE as that was the most interesting thing I've seen in a while. But I digress.)

My kid is big. I am overwhelmed. And so begins the Summer of 2011.

Monday, May 23, 2011

It's (Obviously Not) The End Of The World As We Know It

On Saturday, I was all set and ready for the Rapture. Now that it's Monday and I'm still here, I'm a little disappointed. Not because I thought that I, personally, would get Raptured (we all know that Jesus wouldn't touch me with a ten-foot pole) but because I thought that at least a FEW other people would, at the very least cutting down the line at Wal-Mart or making it easier to find an unoccupied elliptical machine at the gym. Alas, no go. This afternoon I stood in line for ten minutes to buy a damn avocado, and my kids are still here (they may be hellions, but I'm pretty sure they could still get into Heaven at this point.) I think this solidifies the "Our World Didn't End on Saturday" theory I formulated yesterday. *sigh* What a shame.

In other news, leading up to the Fake Rapture, I had snake drama last week. On Thursday, EB came to pick up her son at my house, only to discover a large serpent on my porch. Not only did he slither up in front of her from the bushes, but he then proceeded to snuggle up on my doorstep. She called me, frantic, telling me "DON'T OPEN THE DOOR." (For the record, if I had been the one making the phone call, it would have gone more like this: "Code RED, Code RED! Don't OPEN THE FUCKING DOOR or ALL HELL IS GONNA BREAK LOOSE when the SATAN SNAKE falls INTO YOUR GODDAMN HOUSE." But EB doesn't have quite the penchant for crude language that I do (though she's seemingly quite tolerant of snakes). Of course, I lost my mind and flung the window open, hoping that the snake wasn't intelligent enough to crawl up the side of the house and loosen the screen from the frame, before entering the kitchen and battling me to the death. We called B and he left work to come home and slay the beast, while we watched it to make sure it stayed nearby (for the record, I stayed locked in the house with a shovel JUST IN CASE-- EB, on the other hand, followed it around the porch and landscaping, photographing its creepy little snake self and commenting on its girth. Her bravery astounds me.) B came home, it attacked (no joke) and he chopped its evil snake head off with my shovel. Praise (no show) Jesus.

Life, otherwise, is pretty standard. Sutt still wants to marry me. (Hey, I AM pretty awesome. I can't say that I blame him.) Belly is obsessed with wearing her hair in a side ponytail (hello, 1980's-- I can't say I'm all that thrilled to see you again). B and some other guys formed a new band (*sigh*). And me....well, I'm just Happy To Be Here (thanks, Robert S).

It's May. It's warm. I'm going to Tennessee next month to see my Mama and my brother and my sis and (maybe, for the first time in several years) my grandma. Things are okay. I have another week and a half to be 33. I have a glass of Sauvignon Blanc and work winds up for the summer on Friday. I'll be on vacation (sans kids!) during my birthday.

At this moment, things are.....good.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Time Is (Not) On My Side

Life, it seems, is a blur to most people. Days pass. Months, weeks, years. Time trickles through our fingers like water, impossible to hang onto or stop from passing us by. Sometimes for a fleeting moment, I can agree with this theory--particularly when I consider things like how my Dad has nearly been gone two and a half years. TWO AND A HALF YEARS seems beyond impossible. But frankly, most of the time, I'm of the school of thought that thinks time moves slowly and life is long.

I credit this belief to being a mother.

Most mornings, I wake up after three hours of sporadic sleep and many hours wandering the house, reading, and sipping tea and think, "FINALLY." Followed shortly after by, "Will the fucking school bus (dinner, bedtime-- it's really rather fill-in-the-blank here) EVER COME?" This morning I had been awake for approximately seven minutes when, while sitting at the table while Sutt ate his breakfast, half asleep and hating the world, I watched Belly laughingly put her socks on her hands while screeching, "Look at my beautiful gloves!" I mumbled, "You look like you're ready for a tea party at the looney bin." And Sutt replied (still eating), "Isn't that the place where Papa and all the old people live?"

Um, no. That's the Assisted Living Facility. But, whatever. THIS IS WHAT I'M DEALING WITH, PEOPLE.

Every damn day I get older. I probably get more lines on my face and fat cells in my body, and absolutely receive more damage to my brain (courtesy of the minions) and my liver (courtesy of the amount of alcohol required to manage said minions). I realize that I'm supposed to be "making the most" of this shit that is my "youth" (in some circles-- personally, I think I'm rather aged {side note: that is to be pronounced ag-ed, please}) but I'm JUST FUCKING TRYING TO GET BY. Survival is key. I drink. I swear. I wear cute shoes and bathe my kids and kiss my husband and mop my floors and hope my dog is secretly immortal because I LOVE HER and can't imagine life without her. I have friends. I work. Life is good (and long and long and longer, still).

I wonder sometimes if when I'm dying I will think, "What the HELL was wrong with me, to waste all that precious time? To wish it away, to live it like every minute had ten minutes more?" Or if, like I do every morning, I will think, "FINALLY."

One can't help but wonder.

We, as a whole, waste food and money and gasoline and love, anger and frustration and jealousy and hate. But time? Can you really waste time? Or, like your skin, do you have to know it's there for a while and that you have to put forth at least a little effort to protect it, but that there's no true way to appreciate it fully? Because that's kind of how I feel. Because if I didn't, I'd hate myself for living so far away from my Mom, for all the years I lived so far away from my Dad, for the minutes my children are out of my sight, or the days that Blaker is floating away on a ship in the Atlantic. Regardless of how crazy any of them make me, when you think of the time you have with them in measured, certain minutes, it's frightening.

But then, Sutton starts to cry because I won't buy (or catch) him a "wobin" (Robin) a "wizard" (lizard) or a bunny for a pet and I realize that it will always be frightening. Even if I am 100 years old, it will be scary to part with this tangible self of mine. And, life, again, becomes shorter.

And I exhale.