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Showing posts from June, 2008

Empathy Ends at the Airport

The other day my mom, Caroline and I went for ice cream at a local mom and pop near our house. While we ordered, Caroline wiggled her way out of my arms and marched by the diners, who of course, smiled as she waddled by them. The place was packed with locals, young families and elderly couples. Faces I see around every day, faces I have grown accustomed to as I've made this place my home.

When we left, my mom chuckled and mentioned an older man with a really bad toupee. It was bad, like a kitten was curled up sleeping on his head. It was pretty funny but I didn't laugh when it was indeed laugh-worthy. I didn't laugh because lately I've had a case of overactive empathy.

The man with the toupee, the late night airport shuttle driver with his lunch packed in a travel cooler, the woman working the toll booth at midnight. I know my life is easier than many others. I don't feel sorry for these people or think I'm better than they are. I've just started noticing the…

My Bon Bon Summer

It's rained for the past two days. My Internet connection is spotty. I have no sink, oven or stove. Welcome to my stay-at-home summer. Andy was worried about the summer vacation and told me that my staying at home would consist of eating bon bons and laying on the hammock. While I vehemently argued the idea up until my time off, in the back of my mind I'd hoped it would be just this way. Does eating cheerios off the ground and laying on alphabet blocks and Lego's strewn on the living room floor count as a luxurious vacation?

Once you have a kid there is no such thing as a vacation whether it's for a long weekend, holiday or for the entire gosh-darn summer. Yes, for two whole months I don't have to worry about what to wear and deal with office politics and water cooler gossip but I also don't get to sleep in, close my eyes and soak up the sun before drifting off for an afternoon nap on the hammock or even feel a sense of accomplishment after completing tha…

Shake What Your Momma Gave You

I hadn't realized until this month how sheltered I've been. While I am quick to boast of our adventures in Puerto Rico when Caroline was just four weeks old followed by a trip to Minnesota a month after, since then we've limited our travel to just a few road trips. Life over the past 19 months has been about work, sleep, cleaning the house and creating a safe nest for Caroline. I think most parents would agree with me that sometimes it's just easier to stay home.

We laugh when we get a last minute phone call at 7 pm on a Saturday to "get a drink at the bar" and can't fathom planning to drive an hour and a half to Albany for a day trip to the mall. We are way too tired to go to the bar and what about finding a last minute sitter? Impossible. The dog's not going to watch the kid. And as far as the mall, I'd rather wear last year's fashions than take the effort to get ready to go, miss nap time and get home only in time for dinner before a …

Parenting Perfection- the oxymoron

I'm a perfectionist but I am not perfect. My perfection lies in the pain and consternation I feel when I fall short of my desired goals. Working used to cause me a great deal of anguish. To think, every day, someone told me I didn't do what I was supposed to and if I did it, I didn't do it right. I'd cry and then I'd think horrible thoughts about the people and hold a grudge against them for as long as possible. This is the period of my life I learned the definition of and embodied the term, passive-aggressive. Anyone who has spent more than a year in the work-force knows that in order to succeed, we must move beyond the criticism and take pride in our work regardless of what others say. Or lack of raises year after year. I am somewhat tainted and bitter about working, but it's just The Man, so I like to think I am able to blow it all off. Plus, having a kid enables you to hang work problems in the mudroom and forget while life goes on each evening and …