Sunday, August 12, 2007

It's 11 o'clock. Do you know where your --

--wait a minute. That doesn't make sense.

It is 11 o'clock. 11:57 to be exact. And I would give just about anything to be asleep right now but that is not the case. So, I blog.

(When did "blog" become a verb? Odd.)

Every now and then I go back and re-read my blog entries. I don't know if that makes me weird or not. Sometimes I cringe, most times I wonder why anyone would bother reading them in the first place.

Tonight I read back through the first of the year, when Dad started to fail so quickly, and I can't believe that it's over. I remember feeling at the time that it would never be over, and experiencing the guilt that came along with knowing what the cost of "relief" would be. The work and the grief of those times was all-encompassing and seemed to stretch both forward and back in time, like that was how life always was and would be. I remember believing -- really, truly believing -- that there would never be an end, that life would reside in that hard, relentless place forever. It was awful.

So yes, the last three years really have been tremendously hard; I would wish them on no one. I'm (mostly) proud of what we did for my parents and while hindsight can allow me to wish that we would have done more, I'm really not sure that we could have. We did our best and we loved them, and there isn't much more to offer after that. There are still images of these times that are burned in my head and my heart that I wish would go away. I don't think they ever will. But it's getting so much easier to call up the pictures of them when they were younger and stronger and smiling, and I'm glad about that.

These days we seem so caught up in getting, well -- caught up. We're three years behind so there's a lot of catching up to do. It's tiring and while sometimes there are little victories it doesn't feel all that fulfilling. I don't want to look back in 10 years and not be able to remember what Sara was doing this summer because I was too busy cleaning out closets and painting bedrooms and trying to figure out how to have a life.

So, I guess that's the upside to the blog: it will do the remembering for me. Wonder what I'll be reading about then? I better get to work being more interesting. Now that would be an undertaking. It makes me tired just thinking about it.

12:16. Monday morning. Patients to see in just 8 hours. Then what? Guess I'll have to check back in 10 years and find out...

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Success, redefined

Used to be I thought about success in terms of money or status or influence, things like that. My oh my how times have changed.

I would call today a successful day. Here's why:

I didn't run out of shampoo in the shower.

I got to sit at the table and enjoy my coffee for five minutes before I left for work.

I made it to work before the first patient arrived.

I completed three of seven items on my work to-do list.

I squeezed in an inconvenient errand on the way home from work.

I got home in time to have lunch before 2:00pm.

Sara and I went to the post office and she didn't try to grab an envelope, label, pen, stamp or package even once.

After that we made a super-brief stop (because success starts with reasonable expectations) at Cord and I only had to say "no" 6-8 times. Seriously -- that's big.

I decided to go for it and tagged a grocery trip on to the end of this little outing. Only one brief skirmish, with a major meltdown averted by introducing the fine art of paper ripping. Good times, Mama! Thank God for the grocery circular left in the cart.

Sara went for toddler-of-the-year and sat contentedly in her car seat while I unloaded the car. Thank God for Baby Einstein.

--Yes folks, you read it right: this was an entire afternoon of errands with no major fallout. HUGE!--

The Bear spent an hour or so entertaining herself in her room while I worked in the kitchen. No broken toys or bones. Thank God for Elmo.

I got to make dinner & start another meal for later this week without the customary weeping, wailing, and begging for attention that usually accompanies week-night meal prep. What?!?!

Ah, yes Sara was indeed completely naked when I went back to retrieve her. Every toy, book, item in the dirty clothes basket, her diaper, and small article of clothing she could pry out of the dresser was strewn throughout the room. Clean up was only marginally unpleasant. Thank God, it's a small room.

Also of note: No pee or poo on the floor. (Naked, remember?) Big girl, Sara B! Thank God she had already pooed today.

Dinner was served and Sara and I actually started & finished together. I even got to do the dishes, make a plate for Papa, and put the leftovers away while she waited patiently in her chair. Get out!!!

We breezed through bathtime and didn't scream through the diaper/pajama dance.

Lots of hugs before bed.

Minimal screwing around in bed.

Mama was in her jams and off duty by 8:00.

Success indeed.

But boy are we gonna be screwed tomorrow...