ARGH.

I have a midterm to take this week.  But I have a fantastic book on networking and I want to read it.  I plan on writing a review of the book here when I’ve worked my way through it, but I have to focus on my Intermediate Accounting class first.

ARGH.

We had yellowtail tuna for dinner.  Of course, Todd cooked.  I’m good for macaroni and cheese or tomato soup or chili… nothing special.  Todd, on the other hand, is a genius in the kitchen.  Mostly.  Tonight he was positively brilliant.  I imagine I’ll be craving more of that tuna within a few days… dense, almost pork-like in consistency, not fishy… just wonderful.  We had it with brown rice and steamed veggies.  Followed it up with cappachino chip ice-cream.

Why can’t we eat like that all the time??  Oh yeah… ’cause Todd’s busy with school and I’m a can or package kind of girl.  I can whip up a mean salad but I’m too anal retentive with the veggie chopping and it takes me three times as long as a normal person (ask my mother, she’ll give details…) – so I tend to handle things like paying the bills, setting up appointments… you know, non-kitchen type stuff.  I do dishes but don’t trust the dishwasher, so I’m mostly a “by hand” kind of girl.  That sounded a bit weird… but that’s today for you… weird.

Today was the first day I didn’t come home from work wiped out.  Thought I’d go to the gym, but I had homework and de-stress time so I watched the viral video of William Shatner doing Sarah Palin’s resignation speech (he rocks the beat poetry angle).  Then I got my discussion postings done and now the kids are safely tucked into their beds (ha!  they’re actually rolling around in them, trying to stay awake as long as humanly possible) and the dog has had pets on his pointy head.

Now I’m free to continue that destress mode.

Ok.  That’s done, now it’s bed time.

Ahhh… sweet networking book….  I sense cables in our future.  I’ve already told Todd I want to experiment with it in our house.  He’s going to be loving that one.

Sometimes you just have to embrace your inner geek.  Sometimes it isn’t so inner…

cheers,
moonfire

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End of the week, preparing for the next…

Aidan is taking a nap, so I have a couple minutes to write.  I got my project submitted today.  Not bad, considering yesterday I was freaking out because this material is NOT really sinking in.  I moved my study area from the dining room table to my sewing desk in the former master-suite, now shared study/music room for Todd and me.  Sounds like bad English grammar, doesn’t it?  Ok, so the sentence is awkward, I’ll give you that, but it conveys that funkiness of the shared space.

I have a more comfortable office chair in the shared space and my sewing desk is a much better height for my laptop and books.  I have space to stretch out and I’m with Todd, which may sound strange considering we’re studying, but it’s actually motivating to study when there’s someone in the room studying with you.  The kids congregate in here when we’re working away and it feels like a family experience, even if it’s about getting work done…

So I’ve been productive today and it decreases my anxiety about the coming week because of the work I’ve accomplished.  I got housework done… studying and an assignment done… I have spent some time with the kids and we’ll go to family dinner tonight too, so I’ve blended everything into a nice, neat flow.

Todd and I talked about some of the plans I’ve got for school and he’s right there with me as far as getting things organized and done.  We’re kind of on a deadline now, because of the financial aid issue, so it’s lighting a bit of a fire.  Plans I thought I’d be able to do are turning out to not be possible.  This means that I’m having to adjust midstride and I’m actually ok with how it’s all coming out.  Sometimes you just have to accept that plans change.  As I learn more and gain more experience, I realize that some of those old plans weren’t workable.  It’s not a bad thing… It’s just adapting as new information comes in, that’s all.

Bren is running around the house, playing his SPORE game and rattling up the stairs to tell us about some new thing he’s accomplished.  He’s really enjoying Harry Potter, although it’s hard getting him to let me stop each evening.  We should be done with the first book in the next day or two.

Tomorrow will be here soon.  It’s almost 3pm and we have to leave in about 1 1/2 hours to go to family dinner with Todd’s parents, aunt and gramma.  I’d love to stay huddled up in the house with the air conditioning, but it’s family time….  I just wish they had a/c…   Oy.

Time to relax.

Cheers to all,
moonfire

Saturday evening…

It’s almost time for bed.  I’ve been reading the first Harry Potter book to Brennan (he loves it), but I suspect tonight I’ll be kicked to the curb because he and dad are playing Battleship.  As I understand it, Bren’s creaming his dad…

Aidan is still miserable with allergies and we saw the doc this past week.  It’s sure different when you’re uninsured… $120 for the visit versus the old $20 co-pay.  Still, we are a healthy (relatively speaking) family and we don’t go to the doctor often.  $400 per month just for our premiums and how will I be able to afford to take the kids (or us for that matter) after that’s deducted.  That’s 1/5 of my net.  We’re talking about getting a catastrophic policy and just going that route, but it makes me ill (no pun intended) to think of going without full insurance.

I’m still struggling with feeling like I’ve lost something in not being with Aidan.  I say this as he is sitting on my lap, smelling suspiciously like he’s carting a load in his diaper, and he’s enjoying crackers (with the attending crumbs).  He’s been really clingy with me lately and I’m wondering if the two of us aren’t feeling some of the same things, just for different reasons.

As for work… I’m working harder than I’ve had to in years.  I mean MANY years.  This is demanding, stimulating, frustrating, interesting, and sometimes insanity-making work.  When I’m there and I’m busy, things go so fast that I’m shocked when the end of the day roars up on me.  At the same time, I get home from it and I’m wiped out beyond belief.  School is suffering for it, too.

I’ve had some conversations with myself this evening, wondering if I’m really cut out for graduate school and at the same time wondering if everyone goes through that inner struggle at some point.  And there’s also this massive, deep-seated pessimist in me that wonders if I’ll ever be able to earn enough to make up for the rapidly piling up cost.

I’ve never really earned what could be called a “substantial” living, so I think that I’ve begun to suspect that it doesn’t exist for me… no potential.  I don’t want it to sound like that’s all that matters to me, but I’ve got a rather hideous student loan bill and I need to be able to satisfy it.  I have done a lot of thinking about what kinds of rewards an employer could give me for outstanding work done and I have to be honest that there’s really only one thing that would drive me – time with my children.  If I could bank my OT for equivalent time off… I would in a heart beat, even with the previously noted hideous insurance premiums…  (and those premiums result in a deductible of $1000…. per person)…

I remember what it was like at my old job and I don’t, not even for a microsecond, regret my decision.  I honestly couldn’t have chosen otherwise.  And I’m amazed that I have a job where I am challenged and enjoying the challenge so much.  There is no comparison between my situation now and what it was then…

What I do think about, a lot, is how I feel a sharp sense of loss about my time.  As someone at work said, it is like I’m wishing away my life by always wishing to be through the day so I can be home with my family… or wishing away the week so I can be home on the weekend.  I’m just not sure how to overcome it… If I can.

I’ve been productive today, even as I discovered late this afternoon, that I am lost in my class.  Somewhere, during the last two weeks, I got left behind and I’m panicking a bit because midterm is next week and I’m not remotely ready.

It makes for a tense and unhappy Saturday evening.

Life is never simple, but it seems like I keep finding ways to make mine more complex.  I’d love to quit it and just quiet down a bit.

Oh well.  It’s time for cuddles with the boys and maybe, I hope, some Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.

cheers,
moonfire

Message from the inbox….

My horoscope today:

Wednesday, Jul 22nd, 2009 — You might still be feeling a bit sorry for yourself, but it’s time to consider what your life would be like if you were more of a “glass is half full” kind of person. There’s no practical use of hanging on to a childhood belief, especially if it emphasizes the concept of scarcity, rather than offering a universe filled with possibilities. Keep showing up at work and do whatever you can to transform fear into love.

I bolded and underlined the two parts that took an otherwise generic little piece of astrological advice and made it feel like a smack upside of my head.  And yes, I read my horoscope even though I use my reactions to it to interpret where I’m heading or what I’m doing, rather than taking it literally.

Today might be the exception to that rule.

Not that I think these words will be the answer to letting go of that “childhood belief” given that it’s so much a part of me… but I find it interesting that this message was in my email inbox on the day that my family and my work will intersect.

Maybe things will be ok after all.

As for the detox, that is going reasonably well, except for evenings when I get home and I’m exhausted from work.  Let’s just say that I fall down when I get home.  I’ll keep working on it though, because even just the bit I’m accomplishing is still something.  I know that I’ll feel better in a couple of days… the hard part is making it until then.

***

Got our new cell phones and cell service yesterday.  Went with something less expensive and got really nice phones out of it.

In a fit of irony, because it’s not like we haven’t seen the commercials… the reception in our house sucks.  It seemed fine last night, but this morning I was trying to listen to voicemail and it was awful.

You get what you pay for, right?

Thankfully, we don’t use cells a ton and they are more for reaching each other than anything.  I suspect something like Skype is going to be in our near future… just as a backup.

***

Time to get myself going.  I’ve got to get a walk in and I need to get cleaned up for the day.  It’s a new one… Let’s try that “glass is half-full” thing…

moonfire

Small things

I’m trying a few things to turn around my present “state”.  I’m taking my music with me, to work, and I’ll take a break or two and go for short walks in the sun.  I’m also doing a detoxing cleanse.  I’m hoping that it will help me shake off the ill-effects of poor nutrition and high stress.

I got to cuddle my boys last night.  Maybe it wasn’t for a long spell, but it was something.  Tomorrow is the company picnic.  Todd’s bringing the boys so I’ll actually get to connect them to what I’m doing for Cougar.  It’s important to me.  Maybe if they are able to be there physically, where I work, it won’t feel so disconnected.

I don’t know.  These are small things I’m doing, trying to feel like I can pull all the disparate areas of my life together into a cohesive whole.  I keep visualizing myself sitting in the middle of a big pile of to-do items and obligations, pulling them to me while another one drops away.  I’m beginning to hate the term “multi-tasking” and suspect it’s a giant crock of crap.

Then, when I’m busy, I seem to be able to let it go for a while…  and next thing I know, the day has ended and I’m home where it feels right.  Yeah.  I need to shake this off.

This morning I’m having almond milk, banana, fresh blueberries and my detox powder in a shake.  I survived yesterday’s detox until I got home and realized I didn’t have time or ingredients for the required healthy dinner.  I won’t confess to what I ate, but simply say that I will be good today.  Tomorrow at the picnic I’ll limit myself and not go crazy.  Mostly I’m just in it to have my family with me….

Time for bath and work.  Maybe a kiss from a small child before I head off…

moonfire

Why is the end of the weekend here so fast?

I’m not ready to go back to work yet.  Of course, are any of us ever really ready?

I know I’ve asked this question before, but why is it that we spend so much of our waking lives at work?  If I were going to rank what is most important, work would not be at the top of the list.  So it seems out of line with logic and reasoning that we spend so much time there.

Thinking about it isn’t going to do much more than make me incredibly unhappy, so I think I’ll bury that away with the other things that it isn’t productive for me to ponder.

I suspect that container is going to get very large and very heavy over time.

I had a good weekend with my family.  We watched movies…  had lots of talks… endured toddler tantrums…. put away laundry… did some shopping together and I had breakfast with my mum on Saturday.  We got out and were social on Saturday evening, spending time with another family who have a great kid of their own.  It was fun.  Today has been “Brennan and Mummy” time, as well as some “fix the computers” time for Todd.

The minutes slipped by too fast.  Now it’s Sunday evening and I’d like to hold on a bit longer but I’m tired and I need to think about prepping for it…

Understanding and, perhaps, grief…

So I’ve been told that my blogging has been missed.  I’m tinged pink at the embarrassment about how good that makes me feel.  Is that wrong?

It’s good to be missed.

Ah.  So I’ve been debating blogging this issue.  It’s a tough one to express, but finally I feel ready to do it.  And maybe I’m just ready to sit down and write, finally, after all this time of working hard and studying lightly.

A week ago Sunday night I had an epiphany of sorts… one of those moments where reality opened itself up wide and welcomed me with big fat arms.  It was the kind of epiphany that causes big tears and made me aware of a gaping hole in my heart.  I realized that I am not where I either wanted to be or where I expected to be.  And no – this has nothing to do with work or school, at least not directly.

I have wanted to be a mother since I was small enough to understand the importance of it and what the role meant, at least to my short, limited perspective.  I never saw myself as being absent from my children’s lives, at least not when they were small yet here I am.  I am absent from their lives for the majority of their waking time.  I am missing out on so many things that I can’t allow myself to think on it too deeply or the pain gets overwhelming.

Believe me, I know the value of my supporting myfamily.  I know the value of having a job I truly enjoy and I appreciate the fact that I am using my mind, applying my education, and there is a great future opening up for me.  I am grateful for those blessings.

I am also happy, although not crazily so, for my studies.  I know I need this.  I think school is like breathing for me.  Sometimes it’s a pain, but it’s a necessity.

My children and my family are more than any of those things and I am missing out on so much.  I have periodically taken stock of what I am missing with Aidan and when I do, I feel that grief well up.  There is nothing I can do about it.  It doesn’t go away or fade or diminish in any way.  What I’m saying isn’t a comment about the rights of women or a generalization.  It’s not a “grass is greener” thing because I know how hard it is to be home with them full time (or rather, at this point I base it on the weekends because that’s all the experience I really have).

I had to go back to work when Aidan was 6 weeks old.  It makes me sick to think of it.

Even now, a week and a half into trying to allow the grief to happen and hoping that it’ll get easier… even now I’m still crying over it.

I am two people.  I’m the woman who loves to solve problems, who is taking off like a shooting star at work.

I am the mom who hates it that I can’t be with my children.  I’m not really raising them.  I’m a visitor.  And maybe that’s not true, at least not completely, but that’s how it feels.

Todd tells me that I’m being the best mom I can by supporting the family, otherwise we wouldn’t have a home or food or name your other necessity and I understand that.

It’s not the logic I am having a hard time with.  I do, truly, understand my role and I accept it, even if it’s sometimes difficult.  I am proud of the fact that I can do this for my family.  I’m proud of my accomplishments.

It’s just that sometimes, in moments of weakness, I feel that unhappiness…

This isn’t who I wanted to be.  But it is who I am.

Somehow I just need to find a way to accept it and be okay with it.

I might have to cry a few more tears along the way, though.