Sunday, July 09, 2006

The more things change............

.....the more things stay the same. Dust is settling and things are finally (sort of) trying to seem like normal. What approaches normal these days anyway. I mean - I've been through this profound life-altering experience and yet, the dishes still have to be done... there is a sour milk smell in the living room where EFP puked up a whole bottle (we have since treated the carpet and the smell is nearly gone, thankfully) of milk with cereal. There are toys - little minutia of little people. Tiny teddy bears (that she has yet to express an interest in) and books (ok there were a ton of books before... but they were mine or DHs and usually did not contain an entire forest of cardboard for one word: ball) everywhere. Balls are rolling freely in the house and I am sure there is an noticeable odor - sort of milk, pooh, sweet potatos and baby shampoo......and laughter. A lot of laughter...

There is something else, a sort of 'now what' feeling. We went through all this and had a most amazing time but my life is still my life. I still have to figure out the big stuff... where to live, where to work, what to work at, how to keep a marriage healthy, family stuff, social stuff, money stuff, political stuff... local stuff.......... and now baby stuff.

It is absolutely true that bringing a baby home changes everything. All this stuff is still so important - and I think about it constantly. Making these decisions... weighing all the factors......... endless circling options and trying to remain in touch with the values I hold important. That is particularly hard sometimes - as a child who knew want, I don't always think clearly about stuff like that. I covet the security a lovely 5br/3.5bth ranch in a good neighborhood will represent. Just like I want the 900 stroller......not because I need it or even like it particularly well - but because having it means I at least LOOK secure. No one needs to know there is something else going on in my head. I don't actually have a 900 stroller and there is every reason to believe we will not move into a 5br/3.5bth anytime soon....... but my sudden yearning to live closer to work. It is a completely rational thought, no, it really is. If I live closer to work - I can spend more time with my darling and less on the (very dangerous in this case) roads.

Of course - there are stipulations to that. It is a very good neighborhood - with excellent schools and a good mix of people...... naturally being so close to the campus. It is a very expensive neighborhood. We can afford the worst houses in the neighborhood (okay they are still pretty good houses) and we would be toward the bottom economically. See, it doesn't make any sense though - to buy further from work.. so we are pretty limited where we can go.

Sure there are other neighborhoods - and then there is the possibility of moving completely away. DH wants to search for an Academic Librarian position - he would consider do that upstate. If he found the right job - we would be in the position of my only having to work part time and being able to be with EFP more. Oddly enough someone asked me the other day if I would move back to where we lived before - where I mostly grew up. I suppose we could - but I don't think too much about that. I can't explain that - since I was so upset to leave there, but I just don't know. It much less diverse than where we are considering and I would hate for EFP to have to bear that. It used to be a pretty intolerant town as well - so there is that. But it is darn convenient - close to everything etc.

Switching subjects - but not really. I have finally made the (oh so painful) decision to stop getting my nails done. I am giving up my saturday standing appointment - the end of an era, really. See what I mean it changes everything. For the last 20 or so years I have had my nails done every other week no matter what. Recession- schmesession! Sick as a dog - reschedule at will! I really looked forward to this - it helped keep me sane during periods of insanity. No matter what else was going on - the nail ladies were there and could be counted on. It was my own little indulgence. I went with out food and/or meds before giving that up. Now - its not a question of money, its a question of time. I have been traveling 25 miles each way - roughly 35 minutes at that hour on a Saturday morning and I am there for about an hour and a half. So its alost 3 hours - and here is the real problem, my nails are a wreck before the day is out, thanks to all the hand washing and baby cleaning up! So its a practical matter - but its also a sea change in my life. What will I do with all my free time? HA!!

Now if this seems like I am whining - well, maybe I am a little. I have a very happy life - and all is well. But if you think you can prepare for all the myriad changes being a mother brings by reading a bit - or even taking some one's words for it, well - then you have not been paying attention! There are profound changes (no, not the nail thing) a head that you can not be warned about. Its only when you experience it yourself - and have the evaluative ability to wade through all the various configurations your life will take - that you can really see what the changes are and I will be darned if I know how to prepare

1 comment:

Valerie said...

What a wonderful story... I have been following your wonderful adventure for months now and want to thank you for sharing it with all of us! I am a fellow LI'er, now living in Ohio, and dreaming of this wonderful adventure as well. Thanks to you and the many others who post your ups, downs, and all the ins and outs. It's going to be quite a ride!!

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