Monday, September 10, 2012

Now what?

Swim chick one month old, 2001

Chess Master, a day old, 2003

Dancing Princess, a day old, 2006

Summer 2012

I can't believe how big my kids are getting.  And now that they are all out of the house, I am not sure where that leaves me.  I envision time to clean up and organized my home.  I envision time to read a good book, go to yoga, take a cake decorating class, knit up some socks, start on homemade Christmas gifts.  I see myself canning and cooking for Once a Month meal planning.  I see myself taking out unwanted toys and books to share with other families by dropping off at St. Vincent de Paul or Goodwill.  I really see myself taking time to get to know who I am again.  But as we all know, the best laid plans do not always go the way you thought they might.

My DH mentioned, a few weeks ago, that he would like me to get a job.  I am currently only working as a massage therapist 3 sometimes 4 days a week at a health club in town.  I love my job there.  I get free membership to the club, I get discounts on extra classes, I get free child care when I need it, and I think my clients like what I do for them too.  I have been doing massage for almost 19 years and my body is starting to feel it.  I have been trying to trade with other therapists to keep myself in top form, but I have come to the conclusion that I can't add anymore hours to my massage practice.  If I want to keep running and doing massage, I have to take care of me, so 3 days a week it is.

I need to chat more with my husband to see exactly what his thoughts are on my new found "freedom".  Just the other day, he was all upset.  He said, "I think I am frustrated because I don't know the new schedule."  I didn't comment directly but did say, "I don't know the schedule either."  I really got the feeling that he thought I had the last week off.  Dancing Princess and I had our normal Wednesday, in my mind.  Normally we get the big kids on the bus and head to my massage job, returning around 2:30 or 3 in the afternoon.  Last week, we had her first day of school and ran some errands and were home by 3:30.  Thursday I was invited to a women's group and had something at the club at 11, I was not home for more than a few hours.  Friday, a work day, I was gone from 8:30 in the morning until 4pm.  Not sure when he thought I would be home to clean and cook.

We also have different visions of what the house should look like.  I have to remind him that we have 3 kids.  I think he forgets that they are not grown ups and expects them to remember to pick up when they are done with something.  I want them to remember having fun times being creative and playing together.  I dread that they grow up and tell their kids, "When I was your age, I couldn't have my toys out in the open.  I had to sneak them into my room or hide them!"  (OK, that is a huge exaggeration, but kids tend to do that!)

So, in my near future I see a much needed talk with DH about what he expects of me now that the kids are in school.  I have been getting excited about making doctor appointments, because this is the first time in 11 years that I get to go alone.  Since Swim Chick was born in 2001, I have taken the children with me on every doctor and dentist appointment.  As they have gotten older, they waited somewhat quietly until I am done, but they were with me.  I know some may think this is crazy, but I feel that I have nothing to hide and it can be educational too.  How many of you HATE the dentist?  I don't mind, and when Swim Chick was tiny, I brought her in the car seat carrier thing.  She watched as the dentist cleaned, flossed and polished my teeth.  She saw that I was not in pain or being hurt and we got to go home with a new tooth brush!  Because of this, I think my kids look forward to seeing the dentist every 6 months.  And they don't get anxious about going to the doctor either.  On the other side, Swim Chick is terrified of getting shots.  I had my thyroid removed in 1999, and have to "donate" my blood samples for testing of thyroid levels to be sure I am on the right amount of medicine.  Again, she has been with me since infancy.  I sit in a chair, stretch out my arm and they tie a blue band around it.  I wince and look the other way so that I don't see them poke the needle in to get the sample.  Is this why she doesn't like shots?  Maybe?  Maybe not?  But Chess Master and Dancing Princess have been there too.  And they don't scream bloody murder, when it is time for shots.  They wince and tear up, but no screaming!

Anyway, how do you fill your days?  Do you have a job that lets you put your kids on the bus and be home when they get off in the afternoon? 

Off n Running,