Thursday, April 19, 2007

Email Conferencing 101Appreciation

Double duty today on the postings!! I was going to wait to post this but I decided I just couldn't wait!
The following dialogue occurred today via email. The emailing back and forth is something my friends Lanie, Dee, and Frank try to do at least once a week. It's a way to catch up without taking up too much of their after work time, that and it's just uselessly fun.(Occasionally Bigdogg and our friend Brett will get involved but not very often)We go back and forth on our regular email with the simple touch of a button called REPLY TO ALL!

I've cut out the replies from Laine, Brett and Frankie just because it's irrelevant to my point of this blog.

Read below:
(*Trust me, it SHOULD come together somehow!)

I said: "conference 101!! Hi! My back hurts. I need to find a real paying job..I'm burnt out. suggestions? xo, the beef"

D says: "Burnt out on what?"

Me: "typical work week woes...I LOVE being a mom,..and I do enjoy the time that I have, but it does get exhausting when you're faced with the same thing day in and day out.. Plus like I said, I think that I just feel guilty of all the pressure on bigdogg to support our family. I want to live a simple life, without the added extras...the simpler you live the more you can enjoy (granted the one thing I'm glad we now own is Biggdogg's first love, his 50inch TV..but other than that..I'm just not into all the glitz and glamour of yuppiness.) I love the dollar store, tjmax and even is great, but it's gone all yuppie..and I just can't go in there with my list..I always end up browsing the crap that isn't necessary... I just wish I could bring some dough to the table to ease the burden off of Bigdogg...maybe I will do the discovery toys venture."

D wrote: "Working a full time job is doing the same thing day in and day out too…but much less fulfilling. Get over it…you’re lucky."

I replied: "Ouch, that smarts. I was only venting about it, just like everyone else does about their jobs sucking ass..How come sahm's get so much grief about complaining about their job but yet everyone else is allowed to vent and complain about their jobs? Just a thought. Miss you ALOT!!!"

D replied: "Just saying the grass isn’t greener. Enjoy being w/your kids, at least they appreciate you!"

Me: "Very true. and if you're ever lucky to have the chance to stay home with your broad of 4boys (cause you'll have 4!!!!) you'll have had the benefit of listening to me rant so you don't have to make the same errors that I have.. and that's true..unlike corporate lil' employee's worship the ground I walk on..feels good to have someone actually Look up to me..."

D wrote: "I hope I do have that chance and it’s not that I don’t think you have the right to rant, I’m just saying you are lucky…and corporate America will never give back what your kids do….i’m sure you go stir crazy, I know I did as a nanny!! that mom had the ideal situation…I was there everyday, she could do stuff w/one or none of the kids, go off on her own, go to work…that’s how I’d want it set up."

1) Wishful thinking. I remember when I too used to dream about "how I'd want it set up," with the daily nanny and the ability to go and do as I please. But that's just not how life is, and quite frankly I just don't feel it's necessary to have that type of in house help everyday. The woman that D mentioned didn't really "work work," she'd do things around her husbands production company (if I remember correctly) but it wasn't a be at work by 8 everyday type gig.

2) We all think like that until we've walked through the pastures of parenthood. Just how "easy" it'll be. Think about it, "I'll be able to stay home and not work. I won't be like those mom's that isolate themselves with their children at home. I'll take them to the park, and get them involved with the local Gymboree classes, meet my friends that have children at a MINIMUM of once or twice a week. We'll go to the zoo, museums,.." Yeah RIGHT!

3) Dee has yet to have children of her own, granted I'll give her many kudo's for being a tremendous stepmom to her husbands 7 or 8 year old son, but she's never birthed, nor raised an infant.

What kills me is what occurred when I dropped Jackson off at his afternoon Prekindergarten class (which by the way isn't available via the public school system, which means you have to pay-and paying tuition for a 5year old just seems absolutely ridiculous.) Mix in all the massive amounts of sports, or art classes, and you'll spend a bundle on just one child. No WONDER no one plays outside anymore,..there's too much overindulging on trying to make your child out to be the next Picasso, or Michael Jordan, or Mark Grace (YUMMIE!) It's absolutely overkill. I don't believe in swamping your childs schedule with activities..He can play catch outside in the yard with Dad, or sit at the kitchen table with mom and paint a picture.

(Suddenly I'm flashing back to what I think was a former posting on something similar to this, that or it's just another unexplained Deja vu.)


Carrying on with my point, after walking Jackson into his classroom, I turned to my Sullivan dressed to the hilt in my over sized $5 Nicole Richie wanna be sun shades and headphones over his winter jacket. (yup, it's STILL Cold over here in Illinois)

Me: "Time to go my little pilot, I'll let you be the line leader out."

Sullivan's reply? PLOP!


Splayed out looking like a bug with four legs looks after being squashed, in the hallway of the school. By this time the other mom's were approaching and earnestly tugging off their children's jackets and gently nudging them to put their backpack away in their locker and grab their snack. -

---gently nudging, I MUST add again.---

Sullivan wouldn't stand up. He wouldn't move. Not even muttering his favorite words, "Cacka, Cock, or NO!!"

Now I'm holding our 9month old son, Benjamin in my arms, so trying to pick up someone that's doing the deadmansrubberleg dance of challenge was nearly impossible.

The Teacher, Mrs. M standing outside the classroom door, as Sullivan lay near her feet, busy ushering in her little ones into the classroom By now, the mom's are watching my little satire unfold.

Me: "Nurses elbow here we come!" I say to the other moms, trying to make lite of the situation, even though I could feel my face getting beat red, my heart racing inside my chest, my mouth curving in it's fashionable sense whenever my children make a mockery out of discipline in front of the public eye.

I tried the distraction tactic.

nope. He didn't even flinch. Still laying there on the floor of the school's hallway.

"Come on Sullivan, stand up, it's time to go." I say gently to him. After all, I am in a school, and I'm not about to put out the angry mommy face in front of all the other moms-gasp, what would they think of me then??

Nope. Nothing. My darling challenging two year old. Wouldn't budge.
Taking into consideration he'd had an awful night sleep, he's been extra cranky lately, I started to lean down to pick him up again-

That's when a fellow mom (whom I've written about once before) pipped in,"You should just tell him that you're leaving and start walking away," she says.

'Well thank you very much for the wonderful advice,' I think to myself. 'I can't BELIEVE I didn't think of that in the first place.'

The only problem is, I KNOW MY SON, and I know that that particular trick just doesn't work on him when he's in that sort of "mood."

So, I say to her, "yes I've been down that road with him, it's just not effective on him anymore."

She surprises me with what she says next, "Well, (as she offers a rather dramatic pause,) that's ALWAYS worked on MY children, because when I TELL them that I'm leaving, they stand UP and follow. They listen to me."

Are you serious CLARK?

You don't know me from Adam, and yet you're killing my confidence as a mom. This is the same woman that made mention to me at that bowling birthday party about having ALOT!!!! to pray about being that I'm married to a Jew.

Please, woman, please! Bite me!

So, I did let it roll of my chest, yes it was slightly painful, but than I took a deep breath just as another fellow mom said to me, "here, let me take Ben out to the car for you and that way you can carry Sullivan out."

"Oh thank you very much," I reply. "That is really very sweet of you to help out."

"Ah, think nothing of it," she says. "As a matter of fact I've actually visited the ER three times in the course of my K's (her daughter) 5year old life span for Nurses elbow." "Think nothing of it, it's late, he's tired, and that's what mom's do for one another."

That's what mom's do for one another.


You see the difference? You see where I'm headed with this?

It really made me think about my email conference I had this morning with Dee...she talked about appreciation and how nice it must be to have a "job" where the people that you're employed to manage, actually appreciate you.
That she's correct with.
Sure they may not vocalize it like the real work force does, but you do know that they need you, you're wanted, you're admired, you're their hero. They live and BREATH for you. They crave acceptance and approval from you. The more attention you flood them with, the more they yearn for more.

It's wonderful.

But, what about having other mom's appreciating the things that you do?

That woman that helped me, she understands, she empathizes. Even if deep down she's thinking to herself, "That poor woman has her hands full." But she doesn't say it, she just helps.

Unlike that other blessed fool.

Unfortunately as a mom you run into more people like the bug eyed freak that tried to pounce on my abilities as a mom.

Mom's are failing to appreciate other moms. Mom's are failing to sympathize, even if they have different parenting idea's.

We're not competing against each other as to who can raise the more successful child. That's a waste of time, and yet so many parents make that their major goal. To have their child in THE MOST sports, THE BEST grades, THE BIGGEST HOMES!!

I tell you, I'm OVER IT!!
Reading back the emails from this early morning between dee and I, I figured out that the true exhausting thing about parenthood isn't our own children, it's the mom's of other children. That's what makes it so frustrating.

A little appreciation from the fellow mom goes along way.

It's that very thing that is lacking with the common mom, that makes me kookie.

That mom's have the nerve to belittle you, or cast down their eyes without having to verbally say how much they disprove of your child's behavior, or lack there of.

So the next time you're out and you're walking around your grocery store and you SEE a mom struggling with a rather feisty little one, don't shun her, don't look down on her,..try to help her. Or, at least say something like this: "Being a mother has to be the hardest job hands down."

Just appreciate her.

You may make a SAHM's day much easier. You may make a WM (working mom) not feel so guilty about the time she spends away from her child.

And if you don't? Watch out, because as I've written about it before, karma's a bitch and it'll only come back to bite you in your ass.

Welcome To crustybeef~
As challenging as my Sullivan was during school drop off, he's up sleeping away in his room. My Ben as cranky as he's been today due to three teeth coming through pretty much at the same time, he too is resting soundly.

And I APPRECIATE the time that they've unknowingly given me to write this posting with the hopes that another mom will stumble across this and feel a little bit better about herself.

Now, it's time to go call my doctor! When I picked up my Sullivan after his deadmansrubberlegdance, my already messed up back did something rather funny, and made a really funky kinking sound (if that's even a word). I thought my back hurt earlier, boy was I wrong, now, it's just plain tingling with nerve pain.


Jonathan said...

OK, first of all, let me just say that I can't believe she told you to "get over it"...ummmm...that's just plain cold. Secondly, I will be the first to admit that when I was a young, childless woman with the rest of my vibrant life in front of me, I was THAT woman...the one who would get annoyed at the crying baby on the airplane or the whining child in the grocery store. "Certainly MY kids will never do that", I would think arrogantly to myself, "Certainly MY kids will be disciplined and perfect".
HA!!!!!!!! The big, fat, not-so-funny joke was on me! Now, as a much more educated woman with two young children I can say with utter confidence (and yes, maybe even some well-deserved arrogance) that THERE IS NO HARDER JOB THAN GIVING UP THE OPTION OF BEING A WORKING WOMAN TO STAY HOME AND BE WITH YOUR CHILDREN 24 HOURS A DAY. Anyone who thinks that raising children is easy either A)doesn't have any or B)doesn't spend enough time at home to know what it's really like.
When you give up a job to stay home with children, you are giving up with it all of the dreams that you had for yourself growing up. It's not just the changing diapers/no sleep/whining children/disapproving other mothers/unappreciative husbands/long, lonely days/looking like a freak show in mismatched sweats and crooked glasses/no daily Starbucks at 8 AM in your tredy business's the fact that you have indefinitely put your life on hold. Suddenly, that vibrant future seems very far away. So, childless woman need to understand one thing: THEY WILL NEVER UNDERSTAND WHAT IT IS LIKE TO HAVE CHILDREN UNTIL THEY HAVE THEM. The just can't. It's impossible. I have completely stopped expecting my single friends to understand anything about my life. It's just an excersise in frustration. Like my dad always says "You don't know what you don't know".
With all that said, I will say that the pay-offs of SAHM-dom are much better than the meaningless pat-on-the-backs in Corporate America. For instance...when your 3 month old laughs out loud for the first time because of something silly you did. There is no greater feeling. Or when your 3 year old says "I love you mommy."
All this to say that you don't know what it's like to walk in a mommy's shoes until you've squeezed out a couple kids and stopped your life to take care of them. :)

Katie said...

The last comment was me, Katie, not my husband Jon...who is currently in a skybox at Wrigley Field enjoying shrimp and dessert trays galore for "work" in "Corporate America". :)


I feel your pain, dear Kate...I feel your pain...but I guess it's the sacrifices we make...
I think we should arrange a cubs game galore..except in lieu of shrimp, we'll have lotsa beers.

and as far as your jonathon comment goes, absolutely true...that's true what your dad says too, "you don't know what you don't know.." I'll have to remember that. Along with what I need from the store, the last time the baby ate, the last time I didn't have a hormonal moment, the last time a nonmom made it seem like I'm insane to be bummed that my hubby has an interactive adult content job, whereas I (by our choice, mind you) clean up spit, fingerprints,poops...
at least you and I both have good husbands that bake delicious Curious George Cakes and washes a floor better than our own gramma. :)

Katie said...

Yes, that it true! Our husbands are amazing! I would even agree that he deserves to be in a skybox at Wrigley today enjoying this 70 degree day even if it is for "work". :) We should have a BBQ soon!

Derna said...

i offer up my house for a bbq!! it would be great fun. let's plan a date!!


Sounds like a plan, Mrs Derna!!
Let us know what we can bring and when it is...~