My friend Amber writes a pretty amazing blog. It's fairly new, quite well-written, and amazingly authentic. In this blog, which can be linked to here, Amber chronicles her journey about recurrent miscarriage and her opportunities to learn and grow. One topic that she covers that has struck me is the use of the "mask" to cover feelings that one is experiencing beneath the smile. Now, typically I am pretty lucky and honestly feeling pretty happy, but in the spirit of Amber's authenticity, I'll be honest about the fact that this morning I was very unhappy...
First off, Tuesday is really my Monday, and I hate hate hate it. Now, to be fair, most people don't enjoy their Mondays, and most people don't make an art of bitching about it like I do. But come Monday night, I begin the dread of the work week, of leaving Silas for three whole days in the care of someone besides me, and of leaving my peaceful nest-of-a-home and replacing it with my office. The truth is that I shouldn't gripe because I only have to work three days a week, and my job really is a nice job with good pay. So why do I gripe? Because, my friends, I am being authentic with you and reporting that I wish I worked less than I really do. This has been a surprising revelation for me to come to, nearly as surprising as my revelation in 2009 that I suddenly wanted to be a mother (well, in nine months that is...I wasn't ready to be a mother immediately!). A stay-at-home mom is always a job that I have valued, but I figured that such a thing would never appeal to me because I so value adult interaction. Nevertheless, my identity since May 2, 2010 has become so much of being the female show in this house: wife, mommy, chef, menu-planner, merry-maid, organizer, playmate, you name it. I feel so fulfilled by this role and absolutely love it.
So here I am, grumbling inside about having to go to work. I overslept a bit and was going to be late to work. As I'm about to pick up Silas and walk out the door, BJ noticed that the small cut on Silas' finger that we have struggled to keep clean the past few days (baby fingers are so hard to keep clean, by the way) is now infected and oozing. Although he is showing no distress about it, all I can think is, "My poor baby! His poor finger! And now I have to drop him and his poor finger off for the whole day! And tomorrow and the next! Boo-hoo-hoo!" I make a mental note to call the pediatrician for recommendations, and then on the drive to work I spend the entire 25 minutes ruminating on the failure I feel as a mother for letting my son's finger get infected (hey, it wasn't rational, I know) and the failure that I feel as an employee for being late to work. Even the galloping doe that I saw in the field didn't cheer me up, and I remained in an unhappy mood for much of the morning.
I've simply got to let this go, this unhappiness that I put myself through each Tuesday morning.