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Monday, January 2, 2012

Purging out the busy body

The great thing about my job is that I get a week or more off for Christmas. I rounded it up to two weeks because I found it useless to go to work when there was nothing for me to do but play cards with my co-workers... and I don't play cards so I would be double-y useless.   Don is a teacher so he had the time off too. So here we are two weeks of togetherness, with nowhere to go. I even cancelled piano lessons, Karate and the cleaning lady (I kind of regret the last one) and we settled in for a nice time at home.  
What I realized in the first couple of days is that I do not know how to 
a. relax and 
b. be with my boys.
It sounds terrible but it is true.  When you go from spending 5 1/2 waking hours with them to 12+ waking hours with them you learn a lot about each other. Things that you should know, but don't.   Don and I got some kind of crazy bug that caused us to organize everything in the house.  And I mean everything. Purging old clothes, toys and finding the long lost elephant puzzle piece that we had been missing for five years.  Its hard not to be a bit nostalgic when going through boxes from when we moved here from California (11 years ago) and when we were childless. It took hours to go through all of our possessions.  The result however is an ├╝ber- organized home that we can find everything.  Don took on the hallway closet, the closet that housed towels, t.p and pretty much everything else. 
He was flustered at the boxes and boxes of things I "have for my vagina" as he so bluntly put it. "Stop buying these things!, we have enough to last you through menopause!" Little does he know. I must give him a break, being one of 3 brothers with no sisters, going to a military high school and then joining a fraternity, he hasn't had much exposure to menstruation. But, he did organize the boxes by flow, and I'm proud of him for that.
Once the house was organized I still had the problem of relaxing.  When you are on the go all the time, its just so hard to sit.- Just as I wrote that I got up and made an Americano. ( We finally found the Starbucks espresso pods we had been looking for). 
In the time of this vacation, we watching a movie every single night and played a board game, as a family.  I cannot begin to express the complete feeling of wholeness these simple activities have given me.  It occurred to me that we have never spent this amount of concentrated time at home together as a family..ever.  We usually go to Florida to visit Don's family or Illinois to visit my brother's family. But after last years road trip we needed an entire year brake. 
I discovered that I take really good care of the boys but in doing that, I have lost who I'm taking care of.  Our oldest is changing, and I know its just a matter of time before he learns about the two S's. Santa and Sex.  I don't know which one I dread explaining more.  He actually likes to do things for himself, if I would just let him.  Our 2nd son is very smart, but emotionally still just a 7 year old and can take losing a game of Uno as a personal attack on his character.  Our 3rd is following everything that they do, but can hold his own in creating imovie's. They all find the word "ass" to be very funny and say things like, " I like to feed my big fat ass hay"  They learned that word, believe it or not, from church. I also came out of a fog and realized that my husband can still make me laugh hysterically, when I listen to him.   Lastly is the baby.  I haven't spent this much time with him since he was nursing.  We had been concerned that he wasn't talking, that he was still drinking from a bottle and that he wasn't sleeping well at night.   We even contacted an outside therapist to address the speech issues. By the end of this vacation, he is now saying several words, drinking from a cup and sleeping through the night, and on many occasions, singing.  Maybe our presence and attention is what he was lacking. And I think I had missed him just as much. For a baby, he can be pretty funny, he must take after his daddy. 
Granted, I have eaten more than my weight in chocolate and could be found in my pajama's at noon. I watched the Today show until the end every day. ( That's four hours folks)  I also learned that the boys eat and eat and eat. And after days of eating junk they craved fruit and even made me a fruit salad (hint hint) They called me out by saying things like, " I haven't seen you wearing your work out shoes lately" That is the only way they know I work out because they are asleep and when they wake up, they see that I have my Nike's on. 
In all the organizing that I did, I discovered what we have and how much stuff we don't need. Its actually quite alarming when you discover that you are contributing to the epidemic of hoarding.  Tomorrow I go back to work.  Its something that needs to be done, and I'm sure I will fall into the same pattern of the non-stop busy body. 

If I learned anything, its that I actually have the capability of not doing a thing, and can add that to my growing list of talents. More importantly, after days of going through stuff, it actually took away from what we really do have. If our home burned to the ground I can honestly say that would still feel like I possess everything.  
That, and I can play a pretty mean game of Headbands. 

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