I Need ME TIME!

At book club, one of my friends asked, “How are the kids managing with you working so much?”

“Kids?” I asked. “Kids? What kids?”

But I felt reassured last night. A fellow teacher told me, after I declined Happy Hour to come home to work, “It’s good you work a lot. Better to be a parent of benign neglect than a helicopter parent.”

This is a recurring theme with me, so skip the next coupla paragraphs if you’ve read this from me before. But I feel so badly that my kids’ father has Parkinson’s Disease that I do too much for them. I work too hard to provide every fabulous thing or vacation they need (or want). (Did I mention H. is going to Patagonia, Coco to Costa Rica, and Cate may go to Alaska?) I want them to have a happy childhood despite their father’s disease.

But then, I get the feeling, What about me? After organizing the whole family, I get resentful, “I’m working too hard! I need some ME TIME!”

I just saw this news on Facebook of a women’s writing conference. This warmed me — the thought of women writers sitting barefoot on the grass, talking about nothing or everything, at Skidmore College. Chatting about childhood, mothering, girlhood, international sisterhood! How nice is that! Maybe I’ll sign up. It’ll help me get me through the winter.

An Arctic wind is rattling the scaffolding outside my apartment window. I have so much housework to do. Loneliness settles in. I need parties and gatherings, but also need to burrow down, sort through papers and plans and permission slips. I need to dust and vacuum.

I need to do all that, I also need to work. So let me get back to my freelance writing, lesson planning, and sound design. And then get to the housework.

image

image

PS If you’re looking for writing support, the WordPress courses are superfun. They start in February (which is tomorrow!)

Snow Day in Riverside Park

Sometimes words simply will not do. So I will show you some pics of today in Riverside Park and Riverside Drive. My Upper West Side was blanketed in snow.

20131214-175732.jpg

20131214-175804.jpg

20131214-175819.jpg

20131214-181213.jpg

20131214-181259.jpg

20131214-181225.jpg

20131214-181240.jpg

Soft Blanket of Snow

The snow is like a soft blanket. It quiets the city. Like White Out erasing my screen, erasing these words as I type them. We have had the crunch of salt beneath our boots for a week. It felt like the salt was disappointed. It did not get to do its magic “make the snow vanish” act. And now the snow is piling up and the salt won’t be enough. It will need additional reinforcements. Poor beleaguered salt, can never win.

I have to run to the store now. To buy more hot cocoa. The kids are waking up. They are looking out the window. Eyes round. “Look out your window!” they call to one another.

I have to put the sleds by the front door. And find matching pairs of gloves.

I want to curl up in a soft blanket of snow. I want to put on a movie, one of those Netflix films I never get to.  Make popcorn. But I will be out in the blizzard. By the big hill in Riverside Park, watching the kids. Or maybe we’ll go to Central Park.

And, of course, I will take some runs down a hill too. If I can wrest the sleds from their clutches. Then we will come home and I will make them hot cocoa. I will try to make good memories of the blizzard of 2010. But wait. I am not in charge of their memories. I did not make this storm. The blizzard just blanketed the city. I did not have to do anything. Just look out my window.