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Thursday, April 01, 2004

April Fools?

I've decided to be selfish. On Saturday, I will celebrate 23 years of married life. Or at least I'll try. I've discovered that unless you point out to people that it's either:

1. Your Birthday

2. Your Anniversary

or that:

3. You're sick as a dog

nothing will actually happen. At least nothing nice that you HOPE will happen. You can bend over backwards to do nice things for other people. Namely, your children, your children's friends, your spouse, your spouse's family. But ask for a simple favor yourself, and you're met with deep and heavy sighs which make you wonder if each of these human beings have some sort of pressure leak. If YOU, on the other hand, don't do something THEY ask you to do, you're the most horrid person in the world. It's a no win situation this mothering thing. Give, but don't ask for anything.

So, I'm going to be selfish this weekend. I'm going to pack my bag and Charlie's bag and leave for a day and a night. I know they think their dad deserves it and perhaps I don't. But right now, I don't really care what they think, because I DO deserve it. They gush about what a wonderful person he is, and rightly so. But you know what? I am too. Even if I have to hear it from other people's kids instead of my own. I remember once one of my kids saying to me..."Hey, you never write about me in your blog." And even though I thought they were wrong, I wrote about them in glowing detail. As I often do. After all, I'm the Mom. It's what I'm supposed to do. I write about Charlie. I write about Life. I write about kids events and happenings as a proud parent would. And often, VERY often, I go to other blogs and try to be uplifting and encouraging. But only ONCE have I ever had someone write a wonderful post about me. It wasn't my child..it was someone else's. And she made my whole year with that honor. Thank you Mary. The "atta-boys" I get on a regular basis are from people I have never met in 3d, yet I call friends. I cherish those. I cling to those. Because they don't happen much around here.

It's funny, this parenting thing. The expectation level is so high. You're expected to do this, and you're expected to do that. Multiply it by three and it can be thankless, overwhelming, and often taken for granted. But you still do it, because it's what you're supposed to do. You also vow, "I'm going to be better at this than my parents were." And even if you ARE better, much better than your own parents were, you still find it's never enough. I've discovered that once you dive into that pool called Parenthood, you really aren't allowed to say "Me", or "I" anymore. Those days are over. That torch is passed. Everything in your life revolves around them. Your sleep, your work, your play. Even the mundane, everyday functions. There is no self. Self no longer exists in Parentland.

It's a huge risk to put this out there, and I'm probably gonna pay for it with rolling eyes and that pressure-leak "oh brother" type sigh. So what. Today, it's what I'm feeling. Selfish. I figure, if everyone else around here is allowed to have moments of selfishness, then the Mom who is feeling unloved is allowed to have a moment too. And she's taking the Dad with her.

No joke.


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