Friday, September 7, 2012

Fuzzy Logic

I've been having epiphanies about what I really, truly at the fundamental level believe.

One of these deeply rooted beliefs is one of my biggest obstacles to happiness. I seem to have a superstitious view - I genuinely believe that if I'm too happy for too long...something terrible will happen. Like someone-I-love-will-die-terrible. 

The rational side of my brain can see how this makes no sense. Logically, in my head, I can make the statement that my being happy has no control or effect on someone else dying. Unless I do something to directly cause the Tragic Event - it's not my fault.

But I can't believe that.

For example - today has been a GREAT day. A really awesome Friday. It started overcast, rainy, and in the 70' just the kind of weather I love. I made it to my class on time (I was worried because of the rain) and had a really great lab session - great students, funny banter, some good one-on-one enlightenment which I love. Just a great morning.

It kept going. I went and had my allergy follow up appointment, which was fine, and then found out that I'm going to be unexpectedly paid $1000 for work I was already doing for free. What a boon!

THEN, I get a call from our property manager and we're getting a $150 rent credit for all the problems we've had with the AC going out this summer! Thank you!

All of this should have me soaring higher than a kite - and I was for moments today. And I still kind of am...but my kite is anchored with a heavy pressing weight of anxiety. It literally presses on my chest. And more than once today, I've found myself wondering when the other shoe will drop. As each great thing added to an already great morning...I'm filled with increasing dread that something increasingly terrible is waiting in the wings.

It doesn't help that my dad had a stroke at the beginning of the summer. And then a possible TIA just last week. 

I think if I could shake this unswerving belief that somehow my personal happiness is going to somehow cause personal tragedy...I'd be a lot happier.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

And on that note

It's a cruel and ironic world. I'm spending a fair amount of time on my job application materials for academic jobs. The trouble is that is taking considerable time away from (and thereby stalling) my dissertation. I must finish the dissertation to get said jobs. However, I must do a good job on the applications to get said jobs. 

You see the irony there, right?

*head* *desk*

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

The Joy of Yoga

Time for a more positive post! Since I seem to be mostly motivated to write when not in such a positive place.

I've started doing yoga. I definitely love it. And it's been amazing because some sessions leave me feeling like I just had a massage - I feel that relaxed and open. But it's much cheaper than a massage, so bonus! And...possibly better for me?

I usually practice with an "intention" (as guided by instructor) and usually I make my intention Inner Peace and Tranquility. Because that's something I need more of. Tonight I made it Inner Peace and Happiness. So far, I think it's working.

I'll be focusing more on that Intention.

Monday, September 3, 2012

My "Hobby"

It's taken me a long time to come to this realization, but I'm glad I'm finally there. I've felt frustrated off-and-on for at least 2 years now...for reasons I could never nail down, until now.

You see, I realize that my husband and I treat what I "do" as a hobby.

Not, a Job.

Despite the fact what I do is challenging, time-consuming, has specific requirements, and does, in fact, pay...somehow, we've decided it's not a Job. It's a hobby.

I think this goes back to when we were first married, 6ish years ago. And when I first started my master's degree. I was in school, making a pittance as a grad student, and my dear husband was slaving away for a Grocer-that-shall-not-be-named. In the very beginning we were quite precarious financially, but within 6 months my husband had been promoted to an Assistant Manager. A Job, for sure. With salary, benefits, and STRESS to boot. Not to mention an iron-tight fist held onto all of his "free" time. He worked 17 hour shifts, y'all. But he was salary so he never saw an extra dime. In short, it sucked.

And while he held this life-force-sucking Job, I was in graduate school. And I'll be honest. Those first two years, I was living it up. I had free time. Plenty of it. My best friend at the time found herself on bedrest due to pregnancy and I would spend about 4 hours nearly every day at her house with her. Scrapbooking. While we watched crappy TV. It boggles my mind now, how I had the time to do it...but somehow I made it work. I still met my obligations to my "work" - usually working on it in the wee hours waiting for my husband to come home (usually around midnight to 2am).

But who was I kidding? I was enjoying myself, had plenty of free time, and made less than half what my husband did. While we certainly needed my eager income to meet our financial requirements (including saving) didn't feel like a Job. Not compared to my husband's, anyway. So I think that is when we both started thinking of what I do/did as a "hobby". And I'm as much guilty as he.

The trouble is, now, some 6 years on, I don't feel what I do counts as a "hobby" anymore. I've taken on extra jobs in addition to the grad school gig. I teach at a community college. (that is, in fact, a job, am I right?) I spend about 40 hours per week at school working on my PhD stuffs and TA duties, and then still have work at home in the evenings after the wee one is in bed.

Which. Sounds very Job and not Hobby to me.

So, despite the fact that my time commitment to my work, and the amount of work I'm doing has changed, our mentality has not. So I'm still expected to do more of the housework. And if it comes down to deciding between his work or mine, his will win because it's "real" and mine can wait.

To be fair, I have more flexibility in most deadlines than he does. He's currently teaching middle school and has to be there certain hours of every day M-F. I...don't have such strict time requirements. But by golly, I still have important shit to do! And I'm tired of us acting like what I do is not important, does not amount to real work, and therefore it should go Last on the List of Family Items. 

This is all being tipped off by some recent comments and a very fun and relaxing vacation for the 3 day weekend. I had been fixing after getting a MacBook Pro. Mr. Random finally conceded I could buy it if I needed it...but through a fun twist of fate, my computer at work got updated after in the end I didn't NEED it as much as I had the week before. So decided to wait. Though I argued one advantage would be being able to take it with us on all these vacations we've been discussing taking (one during his Fall break, when I don't have a break at all but probably can make it work) - and he said, well, you shouldn't take work on vacation...doesn't that defeat the purpose of vacation? I conceded his point.

That was last Thursday y'all.

Fast forward to...Friday. The very next day. When we left for our 3-day vacation. Guess who brought a mountain of grading and was hoping to get his lesson plans done?


So. Hmmm. It's okay for him? But not for me? I brought this up and he defended himself by saying that he has hard deadlines and I, do not.

I find myself wondering what's going to happen when next year (I hope! I hope! I hope!) I have an undeniably "real" job as an Assistant Professor (I hope! I hope! I hope!)? What then? Because at that point, I should be making more $$ than him. And certainly my job will be real. And more prestigious. Will the pendulum finally swing back the other way and it will be him taking the lion's share of baby-caring and house-keeping?

I doubt it.

Which is why I suppose we'll have to talk about this. Which brings to mind another post - how is it, that after 10ish years with find it harder to bring up important things, not easier?

Sunday, September 2, 2012

On jealousy

Have I already written about this? Despite having my wonderful two year old, I feel jealous when I see birth announcements on Facebook. What is that about?

At first I the maybe it meant I was ready for number 2. And maybe I am? doesn't feel like that's the root of the jealousy.

Maybe it's just the Facebook effect? I find I already think these people have perfect lives, and NOW they get to have a perfect little baby. And it just wasn't perfect for me. And my life is so messy and complicated and ?...

Anyone else?

I don't like feeling this way.

Sent from my iPad

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Happiness, ever fleeting

I realized in the past few months that I have not been truly Happy. I thought I was. I like what I do for my research. I enjoy teaching. I love parenting my little boy. But somehow, the sum of all these things doesn't equal Happiness, not truly. Not even Contentment. Mr. Random had pointed it out to me...oh...6 months ago? Maybe even a year? And I pooh-poohed him and told him I was, in fact, Happy, thanks so much.

But I'm not.

I haven't been.


Confronting this question has been terrifying. Because my God, I've been in college level education for 10 years now all leading up to this grand Ph.D. degree that is supposed to be the ticket to the career I can be happy in. But if I'm not happy now...what changes when I actually have the fancy Dr. in front of my name?

The increased salary (one hopes) should help ease some stress, but I'm not foolish enough to think money can buy my Happiness. And if I can't be happy doing this, then what!? And why have I wasted so much time in this futile Ph.D. effort?

And I started thinking that the key will be making the choice to be Happy. Clearly, changing my situation is not the key. Because I've changed it a few times in the past and even though I always think that change will lead to Happiness, it has not. The one change I need to make is in myself. Which, in a way is reassuring because it means I should be able to be Happy doing most anything. Which is slightly depressing given the amount of time I've been pursuing my current career path (to be a professor).

And then I was reading this blog. Her post about anxiety (Aug. 5). And it so rang true. I am a Worrier. In every possible way. I fear traffic accidents stealing my loved ones away. And now thanks to Colorado, I fear crazed gunman as well. I've always had this anxiety/fear - it's just been amplified since becoming a mother. I've addressed it a bit in Counseling - evidently it's part of being OCD. For realz. It. Sucks.

No two ways around it. But as I read her post it dawned on me - what if I've been choosing to be Unhappy, because it feels like then terrible things won't happen? I know it sounds crazy, but it feels True. Somewhere deep in my core I really believe that to be too happy, for too long, is inviting Terrible Things. And I'd rather be stressed out, anxious, and Unhappy but have my wonderful family than be Happy - so I continue to self-sabotage.

But in a moment of Self-Counseling, let's take a look. I've been Unhappy for at least 3 years now (probably more, but let's just go with 3). In the past 3 years I've lost a house to foreclosure (Terrible Thing - though not as Terrible as I feared before it happened and the pain/embarrassment is lessening with time), my mother has needed a hysterectomy - thankfully it wasn't cancer after all, my husband lost his job after being attacked and injured by a shoplifter, my father has had a stroke - albeit mild.

These are Terrible Things, though they all could have been worse. So I find myself thinking - See!? See!? They all could have been worse, but weren't. Why weren't they? Because of my self-sacrifice of Happiness. *smug look*

But I can hear my counselor telling me that I don't have control over any of these events - the foreclosure to some extent but I had no control over the events that ultimately made that the right decision for us. But the health problems? The shoplifter attack? Not in my control. Never were.


Because I want, no desperately need, to feel like I am in control. Because if I'm not....

then I'm intensely vulnerable to all the things I fear most. Nearly to the point of debilitation.

But I can hear a small voice. Trying hard to help me see what I know my counselor would point out, with very sad eyes as she looked at me. First, none of this is within my control. But second, and more pressingly - what cost is this irrational fear and unreasonable need for control exacting on my life? On those I love?

I'm so stressed out and to the point of nearly have all out anxiety attacks when small things go wrong. Or when I even perceive something as going wrong. That's not healthy. That's not pleasant for my husband or son to live with. Wouldn't they rather have a Happy Wife, or Happy Mom who can embrace life with them?

I know so. 

And maybe if I can phrase it that way - and focus on doing it for them, I'll be able to make the first steps. And then...hopefully, be able to do it for myself.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Tips and Tricks

I've been in a funk. A stressed-out, crabby, no-fun funk. I know a lot of it is due to exhaustion. But I still struggle to get into bed before 11pm. And somehow even 7 hours of sleep is just not enough right now. I've always been "sloth-like" and it's really detrimental in this phase of my life.

But some tips and tricks I've been discovering/remembering lately are starting to help me pull out of the Funk of Despair. I won't say it's full-on depression...but it might well be heading there. Something to keep an eye on.

In the meantime, things that have been helping, and have helped in the past, but somehow, I forget, which is why I'm writing them down here:

1. Exercise. Just do it. It helps me loads.

2. Adjusting my attitude. This one is so hard. But it's so helpful when I manage it. For instance, I've been feeling stressed and woe-is-me that not only am I working 2 jobs and trying to finish a dissertation, but I'm also the primary child-carer (after daycare). Woe is me that so much is asked of me, blah blah blah. Today, I turned that thinking around. I'm lucky that I get to spend each morning with my son. My husband misses out on those special moments. I'm lucky that I get to have the fun horsing around in the car every day. I feel woeful that I don't get to see him more in the day, so why am I adding woe by being resentful that I'm doing primary child-caring at home? It makes no sense! Feeling lucky instead has done wonders for my mood today. I need to keep reminding myself.

3. Getting sleep. It just has to happen.

4. Cleaning. I took half of the day off today and cleaned our apartment. Totally worth it. The cleaning itself helps me feel better and the cleaner apartment's like a weight off my shoulders. Totally necessary.

5. Finding things that are joyful in each day. And remembering at the end of the day 5 things that were wonderful that happened or I saw.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Keeps Notes

A good scientist keeps careful notes. I do try but often come up short. With my memory as scattered as it has been lately, good notes are invaluable!

So. With that in mind, I would like to record the following things.

This afternoon Mr. Random and I were discussing Wiggles' more recent behavior. Typical toddler stuff - not wanting to share, some hitting, easily frustrated - and how we wanted to address it, and if it even needed to be addressed. We concluded that while his behavior is quite normal, we want to be vigilant and mindful. We want him to be able to explore and have his free spirit, but we're also aware that now is as good a time as any (and possibly better) to start promoting the positive behaviors we'd like to see him adopt. It feels like we need to walk a fine line before allowing healthy exploration of new situations, feelings, and ideas while at the same time encouraging politeness, self-awareness, and self-control.

This all sounds well and good, but how on Earth do you translate that into something meaningful when dealing with a headstrong 22-month-old who thinks hitting you is hilarious and any reaction you give is only fuel for the fire? Or who looks you dead in the eye and does exactly what you just asked him (calmly, politely, firmly) not to do?

Well, I don't know about you, but my answer to everything is to consult Dr. Google. I found a link that listed about 8 ideas for handling toddler behavior without quashing their terribly terrific spirits. Okay, I just looked again at the link - it's 14, not 8. Tells you how good my memory is. In any case, what stood out for me (and how knows, maybe this wasn't even in the list! I'm too lazy to read it again right now) were a few main points.

1. To avoid situations where you use your physical size or strength over them.

I hadn't thought about it this way before. I mean sure, no spanking. There are laws and recent studies and the like that tell you that much. But what about when I physically force him to sit, not stand, on his chair? What about when we physically remove him from a room to deter a behavior he's been warned repeatedly to stop? Those are situations where we're using our physical size over him. And I hadn't thought of it that way before. I'm not really used to being the one who can use size to my advantage. I'm usually smaller than everyone I meet!

So I'm taking that one to heart - it really makes sense to me. I hate being reminded of my own physical limitations.

2. Redirct, redirect, redirect. I knew this one before, but reading the article gave me ideas of how. So when he hits someone, remind him that we don't hit people, but praise him for being strong and encourage him to hit a pillow and show you how well he can hit it.

Hmmm. I worry this could backfire, as he wants to demonstrate his strength on people next time. But I liked the idea when applied to say...climbing on the stove. Tell him he can't climb on the stove, but you're impressed with his climbing and would love to see him climb the couch, for instance.

That one makes more sense to me.

3. Offer choices, but manageable ones. Just give 2 options.

I pretty much knew this, but had been letting things slide and overwhelming him with more options a lot of the time. So, back to limiting options. My own personal note - make sure the options are both something you're okay with! :)

So with those main points in mind, I went to pick up my little fellow from school and we actually had a really good afternoon and evening together (Daddy was working). Something about having those points in mind helped me stay really positive with him all night. And I know it helped. I'm not sure if it helped him or me. :) At this point I think it entirely possible the only difference was my perception of our interactions. If that's true, I'll still take it because I felt genuinely happier being with him.

And he did eat a TON at dinner (when he's been picking at his food for several days now). And said thank you many, many times. There were still some hissy fits - but none were truly royal. And he came willingly to his room for bedtime, and even willingly put his car down on the table when I gave him the choice of putting it there or in his bucket. He wanted to take it to bed, but I told him that wasn't an option, but that he COULD put it in one of those two other places. Where did he want to put it?

So, it worked tonight. And these are my notes to refer back to. We'll see if this continues to help us in our direction of firm, loving guidance.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Student Loan Debt

I seem to always compose posts for this blog in my mind when it's least convenient to actually write my thoughts down. It must be a psychological thing, as it's pretty persistent. Maybe I don't actually want to record my thoughts? Or share them with the world? I have no idea, but whatever it is, it's darn inconvenient.

The worst part of it is that I can sit down, like write now, and remember very clearly that I was driving home on the freeway - even where we were on the freeway - when I composed this rumored post...but now I can't remember one word. Not even the subject. What on earth was I thinking about? It seemed...important. Like something I'd like to write down, think about, mull over, and perhaps consider later. Instead it's on the tip of my brain, and I'll have to content myself writing something else.

Or do I?

*Gets up, makes some toast, and when my hands are entirely full - ah hah! I seriously remembered.*

Student Loan Debt. (I just changed the post title to match)

It seems like (wonderful, wonderful "news" site that is) puts up these articles on a quarterly basis about the poor young people whose lives have been ruined by student loan debt, and then the oddball that did something astounding like paying off $100k in student loan debt in 1 year. (yes, really 1 year - as I recall he had a 6 figure salary, lived in his parent's basement, didn't have a family to support, and brought his own hip flask to bars with friends...which I think is illegal, but the point is, in the right circumstances, amazing things can happen)

And well, I read these stories aptly, because soon I will be the young(ish) person swimming in debt. The debt is piling up currently, but as I'm still in school I'm not swimming yet. More just eying the growing pool of debt warily and with growing concern.

I find it interesting to read that many young people are putting off marriage, home-buying, and babies due to their immense educational debts. While I can certainly see putting off home-buying (as that's just more debt, and not entirely necessary...there are many nice living options in the rental category), I find putting off marriage and babies more troubling. And, oddly counter to my situation. Because, you see, my student loan debt is due almost entirely to my marriage and baby. If I didn't have the husband (or hadn't had the house), and if I didn't have the child, my expense would be considerably less. So much less, that I think I would be able to manage on my meager income as an adjunct faculty and teaching assistant. Sure I'd probably eat more ramen and I'd likely have a roommate, but I don't think I'd have the student loan debt either.

And it's such a conundrum. Because it's not like baby-making can wait indefinitely. And are you really supposed to put Life on hold because you've decided to pursue upper level education? Which takes time...sometimes the prime time of your fertile years?  And if you put it off too long, but are still determined enough, you can pay just as much money (and then some!) trying to make that baby in your later years. So then what is the point?

Basically, I don't know what the answer is, but I know I do not like this situation. For anyone. Least of all myself (because it's always about "me," isn't it?). And I don't understand it. I have worked, usually multiple jobs, my entire student career. Well, okay, during my freshman year I didn't have a job - but the summer between Freshman and Sophomore year I had a full time job. And from then on I at least worked part-time...all the way up until now, when I'm juggling 2-3 jobs each summer, and 1-2 jobs during the regular school year. And yet...I still have a mountain of debt piling up. Wanna know the kicker? I have been going to school (college-school) for...gawd this is going to be a scary number...10 years. Phew! Of those 10, I have paid for exactly 1 year of tuition. The first 4 years of my undergraduate (I did the 5-year plan) I had a scholarship for my tuition. All of my graduate years (whew, going on 6!) - tuition paid for. Which means...basically, all but about $8k of my debt is living expense. And books and fees.


Saturday, May 26, 2012

The Face of WIC

Did I mention that I'm on WIC? More accurately, my son is. It's an income-based government program that provides assistance in providing women, infants, and children with nutrition. When both I and Mr. Random became poor graduate students, we more than qualified for this program. And we put aside our pride and signed up, because our little guy is worth it.

We could have made it work without it. But why should we? We're qualified. The way we'd make it work is by taking out extra student loans. The program is there. We've paid and will continue to pay taxes. 

For the most part I'm fine with this decision. 

And for the most part, grocery store clerks are very helpful and courteous. But not always.

Today, while shopping, I had the great displeasure of a grocery store clerk who was definitely judging me, and poorly. [Disclaimer: I realize the following is entirely my interpretation, and my be inaccurate. But I think it raises a far point, whether true or not] She maintained a level of professionalism - enough that I don't feel it would have been appropriate to complain. But it was also clear to me that she saw me as a "WIC-Mom." 

What is a "WIC-Mom"? 

In her opinion, and those who are otherwise apt to judge someone on WIC, I'm sure it's someone who is not married. Who had a child too young. Who was too selfish to give it up for adoption. Someone who is not educated, and was too stupid to know what "protection" means. Someone who does not have financial means to provide for her child, and therefore, doesn't deserve him.

Here's the thing. I am a WIC-Mom. I am married. I've been married nearly 6 years. I was 27 when my son was born. I may have been selfish to keep him, but at the time we got pregnant we still had a house, we had 2 incomes, and our lives were very, very different than they are now, roughly 3 years later. I'm highly educated. I hold a bachelor's and master's degrees in a science field and I am working on my Ph.D. I definitely know what "protection" is and how to use it.

It's true - I don't fully have the financial means to support my son - but I went out and found some. WIC is helping. I work 3 jobs. My husband currently is job searching and working a part-time job in the meantime.

So we damn well do deserve our son.

And if I am one WIC-Mother, so very much the opposite of what you might assume...what do you think that might mean for other "WIC-Moms"? One thing is for sure, if a mom went out and got WIC support, she's at least done that one thing to support her child. How dare you judge her for that?

If parenting has taught me anything it's this:

You never know what path has led the person before you to the moment you are witnessing. 

And once you realize that, you'll realize you are in no position whatsoever to pass judgement. 

Friday, May 18, 2012

The Five Year Engagement

Spoiler Alert - I will be talking about themes and instances from the movie.

I just watched The Five Year Engagement with a friend. Overall, I thought I liked it.

But it also hit a little close to home.

In short, the main couple gets engaged, and then while attempting to plan their wedding, decide to move for the woman's "career". She just got a post-doc position in Michigan. So the man is giving up his successful career as a sous chef (he was about to be promoted to head chef) in San Francisco to support his future wife. It's supposed to be for 2 years. But she does well, the get more funding, and it starts looking a bit longer term. And he basically becomes a tragic shadow of himself who is borderline insane. To be fair, she has continually asked him if he's happy, and he's continually denied their move is a problem - but it's clear to everyone that it is. And still they persist. Until finally they break up. After 5 years. In the end, they do get back together. After a bit more drama and soul searching, blah blah blah.

Let's recap my history with Mr. Random. We married, then immediately moved to another state so I could go to graduate school. It was supposed to be for 2 years and then we'd move elsewhere. We're coming up on year 6 here as I opted to continue for my Ph.D. And I've worried a bit that Mr. Random is not happy here. Or has felt limited by my "career". Thankfully, he didn't give up some big career to come here, and he's not gone off the deep end like Jason Segel's character. And we don't keep putting off our life until things are "perfect" (see: Wiggles), but it was little close to home.

And the more I think about the movie, the more I am irked by several themes that cropped up.  There's the implication that a lot of the reason our main heroine has been miserable for the past 5 years is because she (selfishly) wanted a Career.

A counterpoint to the main couple is presented when the post-doc's sister gets knocked up by her fiance's immature "screw up" friend at their engagement party. This couple seems much less responsible, much less educated (he throws out the f-bomb at their quickie wedding!) but we're to believe this couple is much happier. In fact, we're encouraged to believe they are happier because they are less exacting. Less careful. Less responsible. Perhaps, even, because they are less educated.

As an exacting, careful, responsible, and highly educated woman...I find this somewhat offensive. Or at the very least distressing.

I can well believe that one will be happier when they're less exacting and careful. Even less responsible to some degree. And ignorance is bliss, or so they say, so I suppose less education can be helpful as well, in the pursuit of happiness. I'd say I'm more concerned that it seems to be yet another example in "popular culture" that vilifies or otherwise makes less desirable intelligence and education. When did we as a society become so anti-intelligence?

Thursday, May 10, 2012


I'm feeling really anxious and I think what would help the most is being able to talk about it. Sadly, I have no one to talk to about it right now. So, I'll write it out. It's the next best thing. Heck, it may even work out better.

I'm working on my dissertation. In short, it'll be three publishable papers. The content of the first paper is the development of a tool, the second paper is an assessment of the data used in the tool, and the third paper is an assessment of the tool itself, via user survey.

The tool was supposed to be built by March 31. I was working with another student on it. She was doing the coding. She said she could get it done in time. It's only just now done. So, you could say we're a bit behind schedule. I'm actually a full 6 weeks behind my self-prescribed dissertation schedule. It's immensely frustrating.

Further, the tool we were building was supposed to be a base tool. On that I was going to add some functionality specific to my dissertation, and the other student was going to focus on some new visualization techniques for the output of the tool. I'm not 100% sure yet, but from what I can tell, the way she wrote the doesn't actually work as I need it to for my dissertation. It works for hers. Just...not mine.

So, not only am I 6 weeks behind schedule. I may also be royally f***ed. Because if the tool cannot be modified...I'll have to make it for myself. From scratch. Starting now. When I was supposed to have it nearly 2 months ago.

So. There's a high level of anxiety. And I find myself wanting to just say f--- it all, and walk away. I'll just apply for jobs. I fold. But clearly not all of me wants that, or I'd have done it already.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Best for your Family

I was waiting in a doctor's office when I saw a news blurb on "Modern Families" and the new "Stay at Home Dad." The blurb was partially tied to a new movie coming out that's all about dads as primary child-carers. In it they interviewed two different stay-at-home dads to get their take. I only saw one dad's interview, but his words, and those of the interviewers framing the entire thing still ring in my ears.

Most poignantly, "I think you'll see a lot more families deciding to do what's best for their families." These words were from the dad, and echoed several times by the interviewers.

And by this, he meant, of course, that the "best" thing for families is to have a stay-at-home parent - whether that be mom, or dad.

I take offense at his choice of words, and what he implies.

First of all, I strongly believe most people are already doing what's "best for their families." We all want to be the best parents we can possibly be. I mean, Kids First, and all that is everywhere you look. Judgment free at every grocery store checkstand. Let's go ahead and recognize that most people are already choosing to do what's "best for their family" in their situation.

And let's go ahead and be clear - what's best for your family, may not be best for mine.

So while for this dad, the "best" thing was to have someone stay at home, I take issue with him suggesting that is the "best" for all families.

Because I can tell you - I thought like him once. Before we ever had sweet Wiggles we discussed at varying lengths our "ideal" or "best" scenarios for child-rearing. We both agreed that "best" was to have a stay-at-home parent, and we both agreed it would be whoever was earning less money. Or...supposing we were earning about the same or even the lower-earner made enough for us to all live on, then the one who disliked their job most would stay-at-home. Or some other criteria would be used. It was all very hypothetical - I was still in school after all.

Well. I'm still in school. In fact, Mr. Random went back to school. And for Wiggles' first year and a half or so of life, we juggled baby duties and student duties (and teaching duties for me) to make it all work. We were both stay-at-home and working-parents. It was tough. I'm glad we managed it. I really am. I think it really helped both of us bond with the little guy, helped our family grow strong together, and helped us really understand each others' position. Heck, we were both doing both jobs!

But I'll be honest. We'd reached a point of diminishing returns. When Wiggles was young, we could effectively study and work at home while sticking him in a bouncer or letting him crawl in a small baby-proofed space. But around 12 months of age, our little man started toddling all over and was into everything. And needed constant minding. And Mr. Random and I were staying up to wee hours to finish our work, which we could only begin after putting our little tyrant to bed for the night. We were both becoming exhausted, aggravated, frustrated, and just plain spent. We had little time for each other, or ourselves. Not to mention, we both wanted more for Wiggles. Our time minding him when he was awake was just that. We minded him. Sure I had ideas and pins on Pinterest and notions of educational and engaging activities I wanted to do with him. But I had no time. And hardly the energy. So once in a blue moon I'd manage something, but the day-in and day-out was very mundane, and starting to be quite boring for Wiggles. He loved going out so we'd try to do regular walks - but these often wound up more hurried than he'd like and never had any theme or other educational premise. Sure we'd read stories to him, but this was at his fancy and his attention was ever fleeting.

Finally, with Mr. Random student teaching and my teaching obligations, we reached a point where we could no longer physically juggle baby duties. There would be hours during the week we both needed to be out of the home. So very reluctantly and at the last moment, I finally conceded to look at daycares. And with a heavy heart and many tears, we put our sweet boy into a daycare setting. We signed him up for full time. Our sweet Precious Snowflake, cared for by strangers for approximately 37.5 hours every week. It felt wrong. It certainly felt like it wasn't the "best", but it was the best we could do.

You know what? It's The Best thing that we've done for our family. Wiggles loves going to school. He loves playing with other kids his ages, he loves his teachers, and I think most of all, he loves their activities! He gets to play with new toys and they teach him all kinds of things. His vocabulary took off at a stellar pace after starting school. He started being able to point to body parts and surprising us with the new things he's learned nearly every day. Best of all, we're not as exhausted and worn out from "minding" him, that now when we do have him - we really focus on having fun and playing with him. Which feels so much better than "minding," which induced a lot of guilt.

No, our weekends aren't filled with those activities I've pinned, but we usually do manage at least one adventure - even if it's just going to Costco (on a Sunday? That IS an Adventure) and enjoying a churro as a family. And yes, I do miss him a lot. But I also value the time we now have to work on our work. And the quality time we've re-captured as a family, and as the two of us after the little guy is in bed.

So. Mr. Stay-at-Home Dad. I want to commend you for doing what's best for your family. But I ask you - please don't deign to think that what's best for yours, is what's best for mine. Because we've found differently. And that's okay.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

White Lies

It seems to be happening more often lately. I'll meet a random person in every-day life and when the circumstances are right we may end up making small talk. Sometimes it's more friendly. Sometimes it's completely random. For instance, this morning as I walked from where I park my car to my building (about .6 miles) I fell in behind a pretty young woman (probably a Sorority girl from her look, and probably about 22, but both are guesses), headed the same direction. She was walking a bit faster than I though, and soon I lost sight of her in the twists and turns of the pedestrian way we were walking on. I got the big intersection between that walkway and my building, and hurried across as the crosswalk sign counted down from 10 (10 seconds remaining). The woman was just on the other side and as we waited for the next crosswalk to turn, she turned to me and said,

"9am class?" (it was 9:15).

From her tone it was clear that she had a 9am class, and was quite sympathetic that I may be in her same position (late to class). And I was completely torn. Part of me wanted to lie and say yes! It would be the simplest thing. She'd feel happier someone else was in her shoes, and, more importantly, I wouldn't have to worry about explaining why I don't have a class but was still hurrying to school. I was "late." I mean, I try to get to my office by 9am...but this morning with Wiggles was one that ran long.

Instead I said, "No....."

And then the light turned and we were off across the street and then went separate directions.

But it got me thinking about how in similar situations, I try to find a white lie. Or at least avoid telling the whole truth. I would prefer to not tell random people that I am working on my Ph.D. Usually, if pressed, I'll start by saying I'm a student at University. If pressed further (for my "major" for instance), I'll tell them the appropriate department. And often that's followed up by, oh, how long until you graduate? Which I can answer honestly - and now is 1 more year (this was trickier when the answer was less clear - "oh, 2-4 years, depending..." elicited more than one raised eyebrow).

So why do avoid telling the whole truth? Simple. I used to. When asked what I do, I'd say I was a Ph.D. student at University. This was almost always met with a mixture of responses that ultimately would result in the person no longer wanting to talk to me. I think they felt "dumb".  It was always awkward and uncomfortable for all parties involved - especially when, God help them, they asked what my Ph.D. was about.

This all just leads me to wonder, what really my best response is. Is the white lie approach the best? I find myself slightly panicked and worrying about how to craft the lie every time I do it. How much do I reveal? And it's not really fair to the other person that I'm already assuming they can't handle knowing what I actually do.

By contrast, I recently went to an invitation to dinner with some friends my husband recently made at work. It was two other families, both with 2 kids each, and the youngest in each set was about the same age as my Wiggles. I should add that my husband works in educations - so these were an educated set of folks. When the conversation came around to what I do, I started off with my non-committal - oh I'm a student at ASU. But when they asked what program, I replied in full - Ph.D. in Department. Maybe it's because they used the word "program"? Maybe it's because I suspected they knew or would find out from Mr. Random anyway. In either case, the reaction was completely the opposite of what I expected. They were genuinely interested and respectful of what I'm doing! It was so nice!

So am I cheating myself and other people by being so hesitant to tell the full truth?

What do other PhD's do? I'm not alone in this, right?

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Recent Reflections

I have often referred to myself as "soggy granola". By that I mean that I do follow some "hippy" or "organic" ideas...but not all. I do shave my legs. My son eats goldfish crackers (by the pound). I use Johnson & Johnson's baby soap. We used disposable diapers. But I also try to buy/provide more whole foods. Fresh or frozen fruits and veggies. Home-cooked meals. I made a lot of his baby food. I'm a big believer in breastfeeding and was neurotic about protecting my supply. So. I mean, pretty soggy I guess, but a little bit granola. 

Part of the reason I'm soggy (as opposed to crunchy) is the cost. To be a full out crunchy granola nut is expensive! It's just not an option for our budget right now. Another reason is Mr. Random. He's not really even granola. He's conscientious perhaps. He's maybe oatmeal, if that's close to granola, but not quite. He just doesn't buy into a lot of it. He did read a book that opened his eyes to the horror that is American Consumerism and a lot of environmental issues...but I guess it didn't translate to worrying about the horrors that could be in our food. Or clothing. Or our son's diapers. 

And you know what. I'm having a hard time deciding where to draw my lines. When does it realllly matter? Part of this came from deciding if I wanted to "pollute" our home with scented oil diffusers. I mean. Surely those aren't healthy...right? I tried Googling on the matter and felt like there was very little reputable information to be had. Most of the naysayers assuring me that putting these things in my home equals death...had a vested interest because they were selling "essential oils" which are supposed to be so much healthier and have healing properties. But. What's the difference really? One website even talked about how plugging the oils into an outlet is disrupting the molecules of the oil and so instead you should warm your oil using the natural heat of the sun.


I'm sorry. But what's reallllly the difference there? The heat from the sun is generated in a cosmically huge nuclear reaction. Sure it travels millions of miles to get here and then is filtered by our atmosphere and magnetosphere. But you're telling me that the energy from the sun is not going to disrupt the molecules...but the energy from my outlet is? 

I don't buy it. Energy is energy. If heating the oils by outlet is bad, so is heating them by the sun.

Others talk about the other chemicals used to aerosolize the oils. Ethanol is one. Acetone apparently can be another. And many wax on and on about how the industry is not regulated so all that has to be listed in the ingredient list is "fragrance" which can be any number of things. So instead, you should use essential oils and boil them on the stove.


Again. You're taking a "fragrance" product - sure, now we know exactly what's in it - and aerosolizing it using...well I'm not sure. Do I boil it in water? Oil and water don't mix. I doubt that would work. What is IN the essential oil then that allows it to boil and aerosolize? Is it just the oil itself burning off? How is that really any better? The oils themselves are chemical in nature. Are you telling me that that chemical is "healthy" and the ethanol is not. Maybe. I'm skeptical (can you tell) and further, don't think it's safer for my son to have a boiling pot of oil on the stove when I want a nice smell.

And that was the other common thread. Don't pollute your home to cover a smell - get rid of the smell! Well...I'm not trying to cover a smell. I just LIKE how these things smell. I want my home to smell like fresh cut flowers. And this is much cheaper than cutting fresh flowers every 3 days. What about that? It's like they don't even consider the possibility we LIKE how these things smell.

So. I bought some oil diffusers. I plugged one in in my office last night. It smelled alright in the store. I kinda hate how it smells at home. All that trouble. I probably should have just left it well enough alone.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Insight into Me, Myself, and I

My most recent counseling session was very informative and insightful, so I'd like to try to document some of it. And as this has basically replaced my journaling, here is the most likely place.

I came into the session with some pretty good insight from the previous week. In talking with Mr. Random about all the things I'd done this week to relieve my stress and how it felt like it hadn't made a dent (things like scrapbooking, hanging with friends) in my stress level. I realized that one of the biggest irritants/stress factors is my sweet little son's crying. And he's a toddler. So he fusses and cries...well, kind of a lot. He gets frustrated. Tired. Hungry. Doesn't want that. Doesn't want this. It's normal stuff. He doesn't even cry that much or that long, but when he does, it grates on my nerves like nails on a chalkboard. And I wind up very irritable and stressed and my patience for him wears very thing, very quickly. Which is one of the main reasons I sought out counseling again. I want to have more patience for him; he more than deserves it!

So. I realized before my session that a lot of the response to his crying has to do with his first 4 months of life which involved incessant, inconsolable crying as he had both reflux and colic. It's almost like a conditioned response or something.

What I came to learn in the session was that it's more than that. A big factor is that it takes me back to that time when I was kicking myself up and down the stairs for choosing a crappy pediatrician. And for not being able to help my son. And that I have a big nasty habit of this.

I'm super indecisive to begin with. And then when I make a decision, I value it good or bad based on the outcome. And if the outcome is good, I chalk it up to luck. If the outcome is bad, I fully blame myself.

No wonder I'm unhappy a lot of the time! No wonder I'm stressed out! I'm piling a mountain of guilt and blame onto myself. Often for things out of my control. 

So. That's what I'm working on. Identifying what I'm telling myself when I make decisions and learning that the outcome, especially if out of my control, has nothing to do with me or my decision. The part that matters is how I make the decision.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Counseling and Communication

I'm finally back in counseling. I had a hiatus because the counselor I saw over the summer graduated from her internship and was hired in a practice that didn't take my insurance. Well, it did, but as an out of network thing and so I'd have to pay a $1000 deductible...which wouldn't take long at $115/hr, but...still was out of my budget at this point in time.

I was dragging my feet setting up with a new counselor because I really liked this last one. I felt we had the most productive sessions by far of my semi-brief counseling history and really appreciated all the insight I'd gained. And there was a deep level of trust that had been developed...and I just haven't felt ready to try to build that with someone else.

I finally went in and wound up getting matched up with a woman I liked immediately...but it turns out she'd seen Mr. Random! (he'd gotten individual counseling...basically during my hiatus). So there was a conflict of interest and she couldn't actually see me.

So today I finally met with someone who can see me. I didn't like her as much initially and I'm still a bit unsure how I feel about her. I do know that I actually felt worse after my session today...and I'm not sure what to make of that.

I'm addressing different issues now than I did over the summer. The summer was about addressing some crappy stuff in my past and working that out. We didn't get to all of it, but made really good headway.

Some of it is really personal and crappy, and I don't even want to go there with someone new, least of all this person. She asked a bit about it today and I told her as little as I could. I not ready I guess. Instead, I'm hoping to focus on stress management and communication. Because I feel that I've lost my ability to communicate effectively with Mr. Random and because I'm about at my breaking point with stress. The two are most likely inter-related.

I wound up crying in the session today, which really surprised and frustrated me. I mean...really? Tears? They came when I was talking about the recent "discussion" I had in Mr. Random that prompted my post about him being an Ass. I was feeling better about him and Us until I brought that up again. Now I'm feeling sad with a touch of despair.

The bonus for anyone still reading this is that I'm supposed to try to post more as part of my "homework."


I feel like being a parent has taught me to have more compassion for others. First of all, I've now had some really rough days and realize that when we see someone having a tough time in public...we have no idea what has happened before to lead to that exact moment. But more than that, I operate under the assumption that everyone loves their baby(ies) as much as I love mine. Which means each and every single person I someone's baby. Their precious little baby. And I want to treat them with the same compassion I hope others treat my precious baby.

Now...if only I could remember to extend that sense of compassion to myself...

Monday, February 6, 2012


He's not always an ass. In fact, he's mostly not an ass. It's really more like he has ass-like-moments. Which, quite frankly, I think we all do.

And he can certainly redeem himself. This past weekend? SuperDad. Me? Passed out trying to get over some nasty icky cough-mucus-bad cold thing.

But we did watch the superbowl. It was pretty fun - we're not Patriots fans here, so we were happy.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

That awkward moment when you realize your husband's an ass

Mr. Random is many things. Some wonderful. Some not so wonderful. Some a mixture of both.

For instance, he can be very black and white ultimatumish. It is not a very wonderful quality. This combined with his stubbornness and absolute refusal to engage in hypothetical what-if planning (it's "too hypothetical" anything hypothetical is "too hypothetical", which makes attempting to make plans for future possible events...well, a trial to say the least) is incredibly frustrating for me. Because I'm a planner. And I'd like to have an idea at least in place, for how to approach future possible scenarios.

And the black and white thing just gets my goat. The world is shades of gray for me. And in the gray there's all kinds of room for compromise. With Mr. Random. It's Black. Or it's White. Take your pick. No gray. No compromise.

For example. We're both very busy stressed graduate students at the moment. He's currently a graduate student who is student teaching in a high school. He's actually got a pretty sweet gig where he only has to teach 2 periods a day, but nonetheless, has loads and loads of work to do. Apparently. Because starting this week he's been coming home late every day, but the one day when I was still feverish (damn daycare germs) and asked him to pick up Wiggles from daycare. Which he had volunteered to do, in all fairness.


Let's take a moment, to realize that I'm a PhD graduate student currently (supposedly) working on her dissertation, TAing 20 hours per week, OH, and teaching 2 classes at the local community college on the side. I think it's fair to say I've got a lot on my plate. Despite that, when Wiggles got sick from daycare and had to stay home for a week...I'm the one that took the week off (and now I am so, so, so hideously behind). And, day in, day out, I'm the one that gets Wiggles up, ready, and dropped off at daycare. And then the one who gets him from daycare. Which, one, means I never have the option of staying late to work on my work, and two, means I'm doing the primary childcare too. On top of working 2 jobs, the only 2 jobs currently providing us an income. Oh. AND. I'm the one cooking dinner. Doing the dishes. The laundry. Hmmm.

This was honestly okay with me when Mr. Random would be home by 5pm (I get Wiggles at 4pm) so that he could spend time with him and whatever. But now that Mr. Random has started a habit this week (and I'm fairly convinced this will only continue and become an every day thing) of coming home at 6....6:30...I'm frustrated. Because Wiggles goes to bed by 6:30. Some nights it needs to be 6pm.

Which means. Mr. Random will go the whole damn day without laying eyes on our son. But more importantly, our son will only lay eyes on his father in pictures we have on the wall. Which he does point to. And smiles when he sees his Daddy. Heart. Wrenched.

Because Mr. Random's own father was a work-aholic. To the point Mr. Random doesn't really feel like he knows his dad or had a good relationship with him growing up. And I've been upfront since the beginning, and Mr. Random was in full agreement, that that is not acceptable when we have kids. No ignoring kids day in day out for work. Money is not worth that kind of lost time. And I know Mr. Random's dad regrets that lost time now. It's totally the Cats in the Cradle song. Ugh.

So. I brought this up to Mr. Random this morning. I tried to approach it as positively as I could, and not as a criticism. More as a - this is stressful. This is not what we talked about. Can you think of how we can fix this?

The response I got, goes back to Mr. Random being Mr. Black and White. His response to my request that he be home by 5pm each night for dinner and an hour of quality time with his son, was that, he could do that. Sure. But he'll probably be stressed out. He'll have to bring home his extra work. He'll probably have to spend ALL HIS OTHER time working on it. Which means he'll be stressed out. And he'll have to ignore me.

So. Those are the options he presents me. Either...he stays late working and ignores his son. Or. He brings his work home, and ignores me.

Well Sir. If you are asking me to choose between myself, or my son, which, by the way, thank you so much for putting me in that position, ASS, then I choose my son.

So that's the plan for now. And he keeps reiterating that he hopes I know what I'm getting into and that I better remember that I asked for this. Damn.

That awkward moment when you realize you married an Ass.

We need couples counseling, of this I'm convinced. But, it didn't seem like quite the right time to bring it up at the end of our "discussion." I've got an individual appointment tomorrow. I'll see if I can bring up couples counseling then and see what our options are...and then talk to Mr. Black and White about it.

Because as much as I want him to spend time with his son - really? I have to ask you to do this? - I know it's also just as important for Wiggles to see us as a happy, functioning couple. And what Mr. Random is currently proposing...won't really be that.

I am also, foolishly optimistic, that this goes one...he'll realize he can actually make more time for me too. And he doesn't have to be such an Ass.

We'll see.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Teaching...on the Sly

I may or may not be engaged in teaching activities at a local community college. Hypothetically, if I were engaged in such activities, I would likely feel inclined to share that I find myself enjoying said activities. Hypothetically, I might teach an intro lecture and the associated lab.

But as much as I [hypothetically] enjoy teaching right now, I can see how I would fairly quickly feel stale and bored teaching the same thing year after year. And only teaching.

Which leads me to believe a university setting is more the environment for me. It's more stressful and time consuming to add in research requirements - but I think it will also be more interesting and fulfilling.

Green Lantern

I'm a little late to the party, but we just watched Green Lantern last night. We had a Free Redbox Movie coupon and had a little "date night" in.

So, the movie stars Ryan Reynolds. In a skintight, computer-enhanced (not that he needs it) suit. And he's a fighter pilot [hot!].

It's basically all of my fantasies rolled into one.

And yet...the movie was awful. I mean, Ryan Reynolds in a skintight suit! How can you go wrong!?

But they did. So very tragic.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012


Today was Wiggles' first day of daycare. He did great! I've got a cute slip of paper that tells me he made friends, caught bubbles, colored with crayons, looked at books and sang songs. Busy day! He ate half of his lunch and slept for an hour for nap! (we didn't think he'd sleep at all...) And when I came in to pick him up he looked happy to see me - but didn't run over or anything. And as we walked past the playground to leave he wanted down to go play.

So I think he liked it.

I, on the other hand, was a wreck all day. I didn't cry until I left the building - but then I cried the rest of my drive. And when I got to my office. A few times after that. Sigh.

And now we do it all again tomorrow. And I don't know why I feel so down about it when he clearly had a good time.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Figures of Speech

When I hear someone say they're building a house I imagine them wielding power tools, swinging hammers, and hanging sheetrock. But it seems like every time I've heard the phrase "we're building a house" in the past 10 years...the people saying it, in fact, aren't even touching a two-by-four. They've hired a builder and got to have input (to varying degrees) on the design of the home. I've heard that phrase used across the spectrum from being involved in designing the layout to just choosing the interiors.

It needs to stop.

If you choose a lay out or the interiors, you are NOT "building" anything.

Did playing with Legos teach you nothing? 

Monday, January 9, 2012

Starting the year off right

I'm now ABD.

So that's good.


Now to get this whole "dissertation" thing knocked out of the way and I'll be in business...or something.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012


This is another one of those posts I wrote in my head. It seemed so well-formed when I thought of it...but sadly I can't remember how that version went.

I was watching my little son playing and reminding him for the 80 millionth time that he's not to play with cords when I started to think about conditioning. And how we all like to think that we make decisions based on our intellect and ability to reason - but are we? Or are we just flattering ourselves? Isn't it more likely that the decisions we make are the result of countless incidents of conditioning summed over our lives? 

And consequently, we really are just responding to the sum of our experiences, good and bad, not "making a decision" at all? Is our sense of autonomy completely false?

Sunday, January 1, 2012


So to circumvent the issue of having to sign out and in and out and in as various gmail identities...I'm going to try composing my blog posts in an email. And utilizing the mobile posting option on the blog.

This is a test of that functionality.

I hope it works!

Thoughts on Daycare

Do you want to know the real reason I don't blog on this blog more often? I mean, sure, there's the fact that both Mr. Random and I are insanely busy juggling school, teaching, and a wiggly little boy, but more's because I blog this blog semi-anonymously with a different gmail sign in from my regular one. And yes, they have this fancy new multiple sign-on thing...but I can't seem to get it to work for the blog sign in, and quite frankly, I can't be bothered most days to sign out of my regular email, sign into this email, and then blog. How lame is that? It might take 60 seconds, but it's just...impossible for some reason. So then, I do as I am doing right now, and open a different browser and sign in as Banshee and then blog. Because...that seems easier? It does I guess. But this browser crashes all the time, which is annoying as hell, and the result is that I don't do it very often.

Which ultimately, is why this blog isn't updated more often. I've written so many posts in my head it's annoying also to realize I can't remember them when I sit down to write them.

So. There we are.

But! It's 2012. A fresh and shiny new year, that promises at least some changes for the Banshee Family. First, Mr. Wiggles, my sweet little son, is starting daycare next week. I'm so torn. It's full time care, and I'm pretty sure it's the best option we have. He's on the waiting list for The Best option, we need care now, we'll have to go for the 2nd Best, or the Best Option We Have. I feel like it could go great, or awful, and recognize it might just muddle along somewhere in between but mostly focus on the extremes. On the one hand, Wiggles is a very sociable little creature and may well love the interaction with other people his age/size as well as the teachers. Also, presumably, they will teach him more than we ever could as they are trained to do such things. On the other hand, Mr. Wiggles is a rather persnickety little sleeper and thus far, has never slept anywhere other than his carseat or his bed. And by some miracle, these people expect him to sleep on a thin little sleep-mat for nap time. With other kids in the same room. I'm very curious to see how that turns out. Any time we've tried to nap with him in the same room as us (traveling for instance) he basically throws a hissy fit the whole time. We have to let him fall asleep without being able to see us, then sneak in to lie down ourselves. So. There's that.

And then I just...worry. I mean. These are strangers, we will be trusting with our son, for most of his waking hours. And I feel sad. And scared they won't take as good care of him. That he might get hurt emotionally or physically, and that it might be permanently scarring. That he might feel like we've abandoned him on those first days, and that breaks my heart.

But then I remember that countless other children have gone through daycare, presumably unscathed. Many of them far better adjusted than I ever was as a kid (I never went to daycare). And I remember that he's nothing if not resilient, my little son.

And I hope. I cling to hope that this is truly the right best thing for our little family.

And I wouldn't be completely honest if I didn't add that (a small) part of me is also looking forward to 37.5 hours of kid-free time per week. I already daydream of a schedule where I drop him off at daycare and Mon-Thurs go in to school and get my work done. And then...if it's all reasonably done by Thursday, I could take Friday to clean at home. Or craft. Or do things I haven't been able to do in about 1.5 years because I've had a kidlet hanging around. And then I could go and pick him up a little early after his nap and we'll have a lovely weekend together. It could be really good. But I think that might also be really daydream-y.

And boy am I going to miss the little Wiggler during the day.

About this Blog

I have a journal. You know, the real kind...paper, bound in a book form...nice leather cover. And I do write in it...every few months. I like it, but somehow I find it hard to keep up regularly. I'm at a computer nearly all the time, so I find it easier to keep up on this blog. So, that's what this blog is for. To help me journal when I'm away from my journal. A place to collect my thoughts before I lose them to the chaos of my mind.

Or see my first post here. That's why I started this blog.