Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A fairly major interruption

This morning as I was plugging along on my merry way I received a phone call from my mother. One might think was a positive event if you didn't know me. However this was pretty heinous. My mother called me to tell me that I was not sexually molested as a young child and she wants me to get my story straight. Right. That's why I have been nearly continually in therapy throughout my lifetime. Excellent. Thanks for clearing that up. By the end of that phone call I was very nearly hysterical. Thank all the stars in the heaven that a friend was due to arrive very soon after. Today was therapy day. Excellent timing, Mom. My friend helped me get through the day. When my beloved eldest child woke up before I was ready for her nap to be over I was decidedly unthrilled. I really need the alone time to think right now. Luckily I have the most delightfully manipulative child. As we cuddled together in the rocking chair she perked up a bit and tilted her head to the side ever so charmingly. A lovely lilt moved into her voice as she said, "I know how to make your life better!"
"Oh, really? And what would that involve?"
"I think it would involve watching your very favorite movie, Ponyo. I think you would be soooooo happy that you would be able to remember all of the rules for a while."

So much for a non-screen kid. So much for not watching the same movie on repeat. Today I fail at crunchy. But, I win at being a parent because every single person in my house is physically safe, emotionally safe, and doing what they want to be doing. At least the day might end well.

Monday, March 28, 2011

So my first living on less challenge for myself. We have Easter coming up and I would like to host a brunch for some friends. I think it sounds like fun. Because I am a huge dorkwad a lot of what I want to do is get my back yard to a place where it would be fun to be in. I need a short-term goal to reach. I want to spend no more than $50, to be taken out of our entertainment budget. How am I going to reach this goal? There are many things to figure out. How many people would I like to host? In particular, Shanna and I are both excited about the upcoming egg hunt. I’m not sure if our friends-with-small-kids will want to come over though. Well, you have to ask if you want things so I’ll figure that bit out. We’ll have to decide what kinds of foods to serve and decorating. On $50. It’s a good thing I have some time to plan.

Luckily I already have someone coming (hopefully today) to take the shed out of my back yard and I found a table/chair/umbrella set on freecycle a couple of weeks ago. That’s the first big step towards making the backyard more fun for a party. I also need to go find some free fill dirt for some of the fuss in the yard. That's going to be exciting. But! This can be done!

I would like to have some decorations as well. I wonder what Shanna and I can make. :)

And the next phase begins.

This weekend didn’t quite go as expected. I didn’t know I was standing on the edge of a precipice about to fall in as fast as possible. I’m ready for my life to be different. I’m ready to go find some new dreams. I realized a while ago that I was feeling frustrated by the limited scope of my life, but I wasn’t sure what to do about it. We are stuck, right? We have these little kids and we made agreements about how we wanted them raised so now I am stuck with those decisions (and this situation) forever. Or at least till the kids are older.

But isn’t life dynamic? This situation is untenable. Something--or, rather, a whole lot of things need to change. So we got to talking. We got to talking about what our lives could look like if we were luckier, or richer, or more determined. We talked about the extremes of what we would each like to have. We tried to figure out how our separate passions and interests can work together. The odd part has always been that we have tremendously different focii in life, yet we manage to be obsessed with one another and we get along far better than I’ve ever gotten along with anyone. Ok, if we are going to be very different people on very different paths, we need to find a way to hold hands at least from our separate paths. I can do it! I can reach out and hold on to the most important man I’ve ever had in my life.

Noah’s dreams are his to share, so I’ll let that rest for the time being. But as for myself, I need a change. I need to be more than a lactating, cleaning, cooking machine. No thanks. I want to have things that I do that are interesting to me. I want to *complete* projects. I want to grow and develop ambitions of my own. Some of the ways I want to grow do actually involve working--but not necessarily for someone else and not necessarily for money. I have to learn how to value me and my time appropriately. I’ve had good reason to think about that lately.

So I’ve been trying to determine what my dreams/goals can be. In what areas of my life do I want to stretch my wings and fly? The first and most important thing to me is realizing that it’s ok to be weird. That must sound odd to anyone who knows me. I experience a lot of anxiety around being odd. Especially in some particular ways. I’m totally ok with making financial choices and living with the results of those decisions. Unless the results make me look like my vision of poor white trash. There, I said it. I have class issues. I grew up being driven around in ugly, old trucks--often that had been “modified” with a blow torch (like my uncle’s truck that had been an RV and he used a blow torch somehow to take most of the RV shell off and leave a weird almost pick up truck from the RV shell). No thanks. I have to discover the difference between having shit because you can’t afford any better and having shit because you want to fly to Europe instead. Not that any part of my house actually qualifies as “shit” and I sold Noah’s ugly truck already.

I live in a small, not especially nice home. There isn’t much I can do about that other than change my attitude and possibly my decor so that I actually like my house. There are always going to be limitations to living here--it really is a small home and the layout is not the best--but I can work on changing things about this house so that I like it here. I am in this house at least 16/24 hours 7 days a week. Lately, much much more time than that. Why shouldn’t my house be someplace that makes me happy? So I am going to change things. I’m nervous about where I will find the money. I think that house projects need to become my big ‘entertainment’ budget and I should stop buying my children clothing to fund it. I’m kidding. Mostly. It is lucky that we are set for clothes for pretty much the rest of the year.

Right this exact minute we are nearly in a financial place that gives me hives. We are running out our buffer. We are doing so for quite a few good reasons and the money will be replaced this year--but I’m scared. I can feel the terror of being poor. It’s hard to convince my lizard brain that we are not on the verge of poverty. This would be because of vehicle maintenance and property taxes. Ugh. But it is temporary because the checks to fix it are on their way. I’m just over-sensitive. You see, I have panic attacks if we drop below three months of salary in savings. And Noah makes a lot of money. But! It’ll be ok. It’s probably a good thing for me to be cautious with money. Noah does want us to get rich.