Domestic Bliss Report

Motherhood is hard work. If we don't stick together, we'll all fall apart.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Now for some introspection.

Lately I've felt like my kidneys are close to my eyes, as my mother would say. I've gotten teary listening to Toby Keith, for Heaven's sake. And that's with Beer For My Horses. Can you imagine what I'm like to She Only Gets That Way With Me?
So I wonder why. Not for long, given the past few months. I don't feel like I've had too much time for introspection yet this year. There was the death of Christina, one of my best friends, someone I've known for 25 years. I kept it together because of the baby I was carrying which I later miscarried. Then, like clutter expands to fill the space available and money the expenses, so it goes with worry and time--we had The Boy's surgery. Routine, sure--for the doctor, not for me. After that was planning Madeleine's schooling for first grade, ordering the books, finishing kindergarten (still in the process, but by the end of March). Somewhere in there, I had a brief, amicable correspondence with an ex.
Now these events have me wondering. Chris died at 34 with uncountable dreams unrealized. One of them was a child, another to revisit England. There were books she wanted to read (and write). She never had the chance.
Come to find out the ex-boyfriend is married and has a son. I recall his fondness for spicy food (which is, honestly, one of the reasons I posted the tandoori chicken recipe) and he told me his wife doesn't care for Indian food. My first thought was, "Wow, he must really love her."

I'm mulling my own unrealized dreams and sacrifices I've made for another's--or my own--happiness. Does that make sense, making sacrifices for one's own happiness? In the sense of the greater good, I think. I wanted to spend a semester in Paris--check. I wanted to be a French teacher--check. I wanted to be a wife and mother--check. I want to be the best wife and mother I can--still in progress. But sacrifices? For my husband? Hm. [Lip bite.] Er... [Brow wrinkle.] Um... [Tap finger.] It's a stretch, but perhaps I make more Mexican meals than I would if left to my own devices. Does that count?
The kids, on the other hand... But that is the nature of the beast. All babies in utero play soccer with their mother's bladder; it's part of biology. All babies sleep for brief periods of time and demand attention when awake; feeding, diapering, cuddling. To expect otherwise is nuts. I gave up my smooth belly for a stretch-marked one. Even now, the time where I could be reading, sleeping, cross-stitching, going to movies or plays, traveling...
Somehow, knowing sacrifice is part and parcel of the job makes it more bearable. Thinking long-term helps, too--what will I have to show for my life when I meet my Maker? "I co-created, then helped to raise, these human beings You sent. I tried to do a good job, to introduce them to You and bring them close to You. That was what was important."

Enough navel-gazing. Time for a glass of Lambrusco.



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