Saturday, November 21, 2009


When my children are with me, I am half full. To be connected with them, I feel very disconnected from the world of grown ups. I have little individual existence/identity. I often find myself not doing things I want/need to do (such as reading) and instead waiting for the next thing I need to do for them. And engaging with them involves a fair amount of negotiation, persuasion, cajoling... even for things they want to do. But we do connect, especially when they are with me for longer stretches. We had an interesting discussion about puberty in the car yesterday. Today we put the yard to bed for the season. But then they drop into legoland, a book, or a friend and I'm just waiting for the next thing I need to do and I feel the gulf between their world as kids and my adult status. I'm the one in charge. The one who makes money, buys food, makes plans, arranges transportation. makes the big decisions...

And when my children are gone and the world is a bit more about me, I am more like half empty. In those times, I am independent and the enormity of that is almost overwhelming. I feel like I waste large chunks of it. I should be riding my bike, writing my book, getting drunk, and kissing people. But I never seem to get that much out of it.

I'm feeling the frustration of neither situation feeling right. Both leave me so very tired. And I'm feeling at a loss as to how to fix it and find some sort of middle ground where the pieces of me fit together.


Stella said...

This is a beautiful, breath-taking post. I know these feelings. Thank you.

Victoria said...

This is very familiar. Especially the waiting for the next thing they need, and thus not doing something constructive for your adult world. But it is a very beleaguered time in the semester and your reserves are probably quite low. I keep thinking that it is all going to change so soon--just a few years and much of that "waiting to see what they need next" will disappear.