Today is park day. It’s practically a weekly holiday for me and BB. What could be better than hanging out at the park for several hours with fellow homeschoolers? He can ride his scooter, build volcanoes out of sand (last week he was building something and I said “oh, are you making a sand castle?” He looked up from his work and said “Nope, it’s Mona Loa. Now, what can I use for erupting lava?”), climb trees and play games of freeze tag. I get to sit on a blanket in the shade, snacking on nuts and talking about love, life, books, music, and curricula. Pretty cool. But lately the weather hasn’t been cooperative. With the exception of last week, Thursdays have been pounded by rain and wind for at least the last month but it feels like longer. It doesn’t seem to matter that the local news says it’ll be sunny and warm and that it IS from Friday to Wednesday, Thursday has a way of attracting foul weather. We do have a back up plan, but I’m not a huge fan of sitting in a McPlayland for several hours.
I do need to go shopping. Thursday is also usually my shopping day, unless I spend too much time at the park it gets too late to go. I suppose I could always hit costco instead of the playground or playland. But I don’t wanna. I want the rain to stop for today and come back tomorrow. Ruin someone else’s plans, not mine!
I’m not a morning person. I’m sitting here, drinking a honking big mug of coffee and waiting for BBs oatmeal to finish cooking and I feel like a total slacker. Shouldn’t I be showered and dressed by now? Shouldn’t I be making a fabulous breakfast of waffles, bacon, eggs and fresh fruit for Hubby and BB? But no. BB’swatching PBS while I suck down caffeine to wake up, and Hubby is likely going to stop somewhere for a breakfast burrito on the way to work. I wonder if I should start meal planning breakfast like I do dinner. But I’m afraid of breakfast. I don’t like to eat it and I don’t know what to cook for it. Besides, Hubby wouldn’t really eat it before work anyway, he’s too busy working before he leaves to eat. And BB is happy with cereal or oatmeal. Don’t “good moms” cook real breakfast though? Where did this idea that I’m a lesser mother for giving my kid cereal in the morning (and let me add that it’s healthy-ish cereal like Kashi cinnamon squares, not frosted flakes or apple jacks) come from anyway? Why do we moms feel such pressure all the time? I’m easily able to not judge a mother who feeds her kids frozen waffles or lunchables because I know she loves her kids and does the best she can for them. But I can’t let those same standards apply to me. I know mothers who feel inferior because they don’t keep a spotless home, because they work outside of the home, because they don’t work outside of the home, or because they didn’t give birth the way they wish they had. Guilt greets most of us in the mornings, before our little ones have a chance to throw their arms around us. Guilt caresses us at night, after our husbands arms have grown heavy with sleep. I mostly blame the media for their made up Mommy Wars. I’ve been dear friends with working and stay at home mothers and I’ve never seen any indication of us being in a war against each other. But we think there is one, and that we have to scramble to be as good as the other mothers out there. I’m guilty of that too. While I feel no judgement or resentment for “working” mothers, I do feel bad about not being able to afford swim lessons for BB or a membership to the Y for our family. I wish we had enough income to take a yearly vacation and to see all the amazing sites that are out there and that I had at least one pair of jeans that don’t have holes in them, and I feel so ungrateful sometimes. Of course I am grateful that, while we’re definitely broke, I’m in a position where I don’t have to work to help pay the rent. I’m grateful that I can sit on the couch and read to BB for an hour at at time and that I can sit here and whine about feeling tired at 9am, but I wish life came with a few more perks sometimes. I wish I could go out for lunch without knowing that that meal eaten out comes out of the grocery budget. I wish I could afford to buy my husband an Ipod for father’s day and that I could go buy BB the shirts he needs. I know all that I need is perspective switch, but sometimes It’s hard to figure out how to do that. I wish I were capable of being satisfied with myself as a homeschooling, stay at home mother and wife AND to feel guiltless about wanting more stuff but I haven’t figured out how to reconcile those two things. When it comes right down to it, though, I prefer to be home, nursing my doubts and being poor than to go back to work. If I had to sit down and make a firm decision on whether or not I want to bring in more money so that we can have and do more stuff, or continue on the path I’ve already chosen, I’d stay the course.
So, an hour after I started this post, it’s time to close up shop. It’s been a productive morning already. I prepared steel cut oats and bread for breakfast, unloaded the dishwasher, read BB two chapters of Story of the World, and have typed out a long, whiny post. I guess I don’t feel so lazy or worthless when I look at it that way.