Thursday, December 23, 2010

Are We Going to See Santa, Or What!?

Nearly 1 week before Christmas, he said "Are we going to see Santa, or what?!"  My 4 year old was anxiously awaiting something he started to think was never going to happen.  It's always a challenge as a Mom and feeling like you have to be everything to everyone.  Adding in on top of that a full time career and the potential to let something slip in your life becomes very likely.

I always used to vent to my BFF that I feel as if my life is like a triangle split into three major areas; professional, family, and personal.  I generally find it impossible to devote an adequate amount of attention to all three areas at once. If I am doing great juggling my career and home life, I am neglecting myself.  If I am taking care of myself and my family, work is suffering.  It never fails.

Right before the holidays, I was so busy getting ready to go on vacation from work and worrying about what I needed to do to get ready for the holidays that my family was left back in the dust.  It wasn't until the innocent words of a child reminded me that I needed to conciously focus my attention back on my family.  I assured my son that we would definitely see Santa.  When? was the next logical question.  Hmmm, "I don't know" was all I could reply "but I do promise you we will see him before Christmas."

I keep thinking that one day, I'll get the hang of this Mommy thing.  One day, I'm sure that everything will perfectly fall in line and be easy.  But, that day never seems to come.  I have to come to terms that I lost control of my own life about 4 years ago and now the driving force is this little person that I am now responsible to raise. 

So reflecting on things like I normally do, I came to realize that maybe the key is to let go of how my life "used to be" and embrace my new reality.  A reality where Santa visits don't happen until 5 days before Christmas and sometimes the dishes or laundry don't get done right away.  A reality where I can't always control what happens but I can control how I react to it. 

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Refrigerated Brown Sugar

The other day he said, Honey, is the brown sugar supposed to be refrigerated?  What? Are you kidding me?  I seriously had a big tub of brown sugar that I used 2 weeks ago in the fridge right there in the front on the middle shelf and didn't even know it.  I've probably opened the door at least 30 times and just kept thinking, WOW, I need to clean this thing out.

It made me realize that I've been walking around on auto-pilot lately.  Just trying to keep it all together and get through the holidays.  Trying to keep all my plates at home, work, and in my personal life spinning just long enough until I can sit back and breathe...  It made me realize that I haven't even read a book to my son in over 2 weeks.  It made me realize that I need to SLOW DOWN which is reinforced by this permanent ache in my neck that just won't seem to go away.

I am really tired of living this way and decided things need to change.  I want to be able to enjoy life again instead of feeling like I'm a passenger in a locomotive that is speeding out of control.  I realized I need to make some changes. 

Since I am an impatient person, the biggest challenge for me is to understand that it's possible to change even if all I can give right now are small efforts to reach my larger goals.

Last night, I took one small step forward.  I made sure to read to my son before bed.  He had a great time and afterward he said "Mommy, thank you for reading to me." It warmed my heart and fueled me for the slow and steady journey.  I know I will continue to take small steps at my pace until I get where I want to go.  Changes don't have to be big, they just have to be consistent.

Wish me luck!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

No Tripping Your Team Mates

So Little Man had his first basketball class yesterday.  He is a HUGE basketball fan and has been dying to play since he's been 2 years old after we went to his first NBA game where he sat still glued to the action the entire time.  On the way to class, he asked me 1001 questions because he was so excited.  One of the questions was "What are we going to learn?"  I explained that the coach will teach him the basics of playing like passing, dribbling, and shooting.  He then added in his own commentary: "And we'll learn not to fight with our team mates and not to trip them, even if it is funny."  "Yep!", I replied.  Huh?  Wait a minute, tripping your team mates isn't funny.  "Sure it is!", he said. 

The little everything day things about parenting still amaze me.  That we need to teach little humans how to put on their socks, tie their shoes and do all the basic things it seems like we've known all our lives is pretty cool.  Teaching them qualities like humanity, morality, generosity, and kindness along with all the attributes we need to become great people is a big responsibility.  The fact that basic human nature tells us as unrefined humans that things like tripping others is funny, even though civilized people know it is not is very interesting to me.

The best way to teach our children morals is to lead by example, they need to see us doing the things every day that we say are right.  Last night we were watching our town's Christmas parade and there was a man dressed up as an elf riding a bike pulling a wagon (I have mentioned we live in the country, right LOL?) Well, the man fell over and hit the ground pretty hard.  My husband ran over there without skipping a beat and helped him up.  I was surprised at how many other parade-goers didn't even blink an eye.  Matthew kept talking about how his Dad helped the elf the rest of the night.

The other thing we need to do is take every opportunity to talk to our children.  Had my son and I never been talking about basketball, I might not have known he thought tripping other kids was funny.  As a result I would have missed an opportunity to strengthen his morals.  Ask your child questions and more importantly, ask them what they think.  You might be surprised (like I was) at their answers.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Blogging, The New Hobby

I truly believe hobbies are important to maintain our sanity.  Everyone can benefit from a creative outlet.  As long as I can remember I've been on the hobby bandwagon, starting with Friendship bracelets in Junior High.  It seems every year or two, I'm shelling out hundreds of clams to jump on the latest hobby train.  From making Candles, Rubber Stamping, Scrapbooking, Beading, to Crochet.  If you can name it, chances are I have remnants of supplies in my house collecting dust.

I'm glad that the latest "hobby", blogging, is so cost effective and easy to begin.  It's a great way to surround yourself with like-minded people, share experiences, and leave your little stamp on the world.  I've been thinking a lot lately about why so many Moms today are blogging.  My perspective on this is that it's easy to incorporate into our busy lives and therapeutic.  It's also a great way to reaffirm that when you're feeling misunderstood, there's bound to be someone out there who can relate to you.  I think that through sharing we not only become more complete ourselves but might even help someone else be more complete in the process.

Blogging is a natural next step for me.  I've enjoyed writing since I was a young girl.  I couldn't even count how many times I've gotten out of bed (like tonight) to write down the words floating around in my head so I can settle down and get some sleep.  I am excited to finally kick off my blogging journey.

So, what am I all about and what do I intend to share from my corner of the Web?

In my house, I'm outnumbered 2 to 1 so it's usually about "What He Said!"  My husband is from the south and I am originally from the north which makes for some interesting gaps in our backgrounds and approach to life.  He is a true "country boy" and I am more of a "city girl".  Through it all, we've been able to come together to raise a quirky little boy that is our whole world.  I hope to bring some interesting stories about of life that some of you can appreciate.

I've been in the Information Technology business for over 15 years.  My title inspiration is also sparked by the challenges of becoming a successful woman in a male dominated field.  I'll be talking about the challenges of being a working Mom and sharing my challenges with "balancing it all".