Sunday, August 28, 2011
Bunnies and Butterflies
It's hard to stay on an even keel in this world. Our human emotions can take us so many places, both welcome and unwelcome. We face each day not really knowing what it will bring, but pursuing it anyway because there is no alternative.
I'm becoming even more in tune to the slight--and not so slight--dips in my mood, my energy, my ability to kick it every day. That is remarkable to me: that I am able to discern those slight changes, that I am able to be aware at all of my own self in the spinning, harried ballet that is my motherhood.
I told you last week that I loved fall. And that's true. But it's always been a hard season for my marriage. I sometimes think Shrek's love for the Steelers equals his love for me. And that can be on a good day in the fall. Let's not even start on deer season and the many hunting seasons for every small creature. (Run, rabbits, gather the squirrels and the snipes and get moving...)
On my worst of days, I'm miserable. Womanhood and motherhood team up to pound me into the ground in turn. I'm frazzled, short-fused, unproductive, poor. On my best of days, I'm remembering my reasons, taking life in stride, feeling challenged but triumphant.
Today, I'm all of these things. The weekend is winding down. I'm nearly ready for the b%#*& that is Monday morning. I'm up too late, unshowered, behind on so many things, but maintaining. I'm remembering how I got to see a very special little girl meet her new furry little friend at a birthday party Friday night; how I cleaned, within an inch of its life, my upstairs on Saturday morning; how I rocked my $2 yard sale dress at a wedding that night; how I managed to upright myself and four children and dress all in respectable church clothes all by myself to attend Mass this morn; how I laid on a blanket and looked up at the clouds with my babies at Lake Tweet this afternoon; how I soaked up a visit with my sis, my mom and seven children at my sister's new place; and how I rolled with all the punches. There were about a million details in all of that. It was, it is, my life.
An amazing thing happened tonight. All four of my children were in bed. The sun was still up. I had the urge to go on a run. And my running shoes were actually here at the house, and not in the camper where they've been hibernating most of the summer. I tied those laces, grabbed my iPod, hit the sidewalk and ran. I'm every bit as unfit as I thought I was, but it isn't as bad as it could be. There's an athlete living inside of me, of that, I have no doubt. The madonna has been taking precedence, but it just might be time for the athlete to rise, if only a little.
I ran. I walked. Alternated the two. I planned to wear better underwear next time and to lose the dangly earrings. It was nice. And life-affirming. And necessary.
And, of course, when I got back, I paid for it. The baby had been up, screaming off and on for fifteen minutes. But momma got him back to sleep, rocked the sit-ups, conquered the dishes, had to ask for help on the morning prep and got it.
Tomorrow is another day. It's imminent, welcomed, unknown. I'm not going to wait for the other shoe to drop, but instead force it to land in the right direction.
Here's to hoping the melancholy will be gone, to be replaced, as Lily sometimes says, with "bunnies and butterflies," or, in adult-speak, happiness.