Remember that scene from Reservoir Dogs, when they play this song and Micheal Madsen does a little dance? I would link to it, but it’s a bit harsh.
I heard it last week and had to do the dance. And then I realized I was in a public place, making a fool of myself to the point that my five year-old was looking at me as if to say “please mom, you look ridiculous.” And the other two were acting like they didn’t know me.
I do have a point. I’m getting to it.
I’ve been stuck in the middle lately. Clowns to the left of me, Jokers to the right here I am stuck in the middle with you. And I’m wonderin’ what it is I should do.
Obviously, I have plenty to DO. I’m homeschooling. I have kids to love and learn with. I have a house to clean occasionally and meals to make almost daily. I have cats to take pictures of and a dog to smother. Oh yeah, I write too.
And then I had a what about me moment. I felt the urge to be all resentful of my kids for keeping me from writing. I started thinking that they are responsible for my writer’s block, like they sucked the words out of my head with a straw in the middle of the night and buried them in the back yard. I can see it so clearly.
Yet, they aren’t truly keeping me from doing anything. I chose to keep them home, for a variety of reasons. I just need time to follow my dreams too.
I had a realization at a party, when a mom made a comment that shocked me a little, in a sad way. The resentment evaporated. I realized that being close and connected to my little women is a huge part of what I want in my life.
She simply said this:
“My kids don’t have school until Wednesday. I have the entire day with them tomorrow.”
Her tone was the same one I would use if I had to get a root canal, eat dirt for lunch, get a pap smear, wait in line at the DMV and finish my day with a trip to Costco in the rain.
Bitter. I refuse to go there.
Aside from being my favorite people on the planet, my kids have always been my inspiration. Without them, I would be the crazy cat lady blogger. Or maybe I’d write posts about cleaning the grout on the bathroom floor with a toothbrush. Or I would be taking on every boring, low paying freelance project I could get my money hungry little fingers on and end up writing entire articles about square coffee tables or pool table lighting.
I’ve done it before. Once, I got paid to write 800 words explaining the meaning of the song Zombie. As if I knew anything about it…
What I am trying to say is that I need to find my way back to me. And I think every mother (homeschooling or not) probably goes through a phase where they forget that they exist separate from their children.
The poor me I don’t have any time to write because I am sacrificing my whole entire existence for the good of my children attitude has to go. It isn’t true.
A friend talked me down off the ledge by pointing out what a disservice it is to our kids if we don’t follow our dreams. If they don’t see us pursuing the things we are passionate about in our lives, how can we expect them to do the same? They need to see that we are more than mom.
So if I am not finding time to write, it’s because I am not making it a priority. It’s because I’m afraid that this bout with writer’s block has once and for all left me without words. It may even be because writing about homeschooling is hard. I examine and reexamine and then examine my parenting ideas some more. I didn’t arrive at my approach by chance.
I guess… I was afraid. I was petrified. Kept thinking I could never live without you by my side…
Enough of that.
This is where I want to be. Stuck in the middle of it all, dancing around when I feel like it. The balancing act is a work in progress. And that’s OK. I’ll get there.
And I grew strong and I learned how to get along!
In case you are interested, here are The Replacements. Keanu can’t dance, but I’m no one to talk.