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safe and insane; eat less, be grumpy

IMG_20130430_200800_resizedLast Friday, when the moon was full and I was at my most irritable, I snapped this shot at 5:40 AM.  If I am awake, I am most happiest in the morning in the pre-dawn silence; my mind empty.  As I take more steps the gears in my head start to whir and the to-do lists form; upcoming events in the day start to fill in the gap.  But for an hour I can mindlessly walk, with a few reprimands at Snuggles.  I find that on the days that I don’t walk that I, mentally, am much slower. My bodily-kinesthetic brain needs movement to maximize its potential.

Once I return from my walk my day kicks into gear.  Kids are awakened, if they are not already, lunches are packed, breakfast is hastily made.  I sprint to pull out of my garage, fully dressed, fed with three kids (and kicking a husband in the head to wake up) by 7:35 am each morning.  If there is any delay our timing is off and I am in the midst of school traffic; something I try very hard to avoid.  Thus, my new wardrobe consists of anything and everything black: yoga pants, jeans, leggings.

I am appalled at how parents disregard the safety of their children when they drop off or pick up kids at school.  Each morning this week (it’s only Wednesday) I have leaned heavily on the horn. Yesterday it was the white Hyundai who cut off ten cars, myself included, when she illegally passed us on the right and almost hit our crossing guard. Today it was the mom who decided to drop off her two middle school passengers as they crossed traffic (the crosswalk was 100 feet away and they chose to walk in the middle of the busy street).  I immediately: blocked her escape (once again I am the car allowing safe passage and there is a line behind me), snapped a picture of her license plate and glared at her as I made the naughty-naughty sign.  The crossing guard waved to me, observing my actions, shaking her head at the other parent.  It is all I can do to keep my windows up as I cuss and scream like a banshee.  WTH!  If I see this happen again, I seriously am debating turning the license plate numbers into our local police department.  A car in opposing traffic almost hit the first child and when this parent sent another kid over I almost lost my mind.  Really?  I mean, seriously!

How to stay sane!?

Car rage simmering, I am thankful for the mental calm music can bring me.  After picking up my younger sons, this minimum school day, the song Tongue Tied by GroupLove brought me the memory of flying over the Pacific Ocean en route to Maui last summer.  It immediately eased my hammering pulse as I sat through gazillion traffic lights.  I was questioning my sanity as a parent.  Where are the instructions for parenting 101?  My hubby laughs at me and references all the parenting books that sit, collecting dust, on my bookshelf at home.  As a young mom I devoured these tomes of parenting advice; comforting and conflicting.  How do I keep my kids safe while remaining sane?  At that time I had to worry about: toddler proofing my home, potty training and sleeping through the night.  What foods promoted intelligence?  Should I or should I not immunize?  Scream free parenting.  Spank free parenting. Raising a leader vs. a follower.  Birth order, raising boys, sibling rivalry, the list goes on….Currently I am maneuvering through: puberty, social media and fledgling independence.   In lieu of Newtown, CT and the Boston marathon bombings; even 9-11 you cannot guarantee safety.  But as a parent you can try your darndest to teach social and moral responsibility.  If you allow your kid to cross the busy street when a crosswalk is 100 feet away; what message are you sending them?  When you cut people off, with your kids in the car, what will make them follow the rules?  Cursing and gesturing in my own car, a not good parent do I make.  Aside: my kids were not in my vehicle when I was doing all my theatrics but that doesn’t exempt my behavior.  Do as I say, not as I do.  The way you practice is the way you perform when it counts.  As a parent, we need to get in the practice of doing the right thing, every day; not just when it suits us.

As if I weren’t already on edge, an exorbitant amount of time, each morning,  is spent staring at my closet full of clothes that do not fit.  This delays my morning routine and adds to my general insanity.  Most days you will find me in shades of black.  I do not wear this color, only, for its slimmer streamlined silhouette; I also wear black for practical reasons.  Yesterday I wore bright colors of spring and found myself full of grease after helping out in the shop.    Black and gray are our business logo colors, as well.  So I need more black in my wardrobe.

As of today, my girlfriend and I have concocted a new motto: eat less, be grumpy.  We both lamented the state of our non-fitting wardrobes.   Both of us know we have to eat less because most of the issues we have are in our portion sizes.  Self-control.  Discipline.  I am not a binge eater.  I am a boredom coffee/tea drinker and should switch to water.  I eat healthy foods; most of the time.  But I eat lots of healthy food; hence the problem.  Add the fact that my metabolism has slowed and I am sedentary at a desk versus roaming around and poof!  Clothes do not fit.  And it is not that time of the month.  Hence, my girlfriend and I agreed that, instead of feeling happy and sated with food, we shall eat less and be grumpy.

So if you happen to run into a woman: driving in her SUV, gesturing wildly with her camera/cell phone,  windows up,  to the loud thumping of bass, silhouetted in black; be sure to wave.   I’ll be wasting away to a waif; grumpily.  Just don’t cut me off and be sure to let all children present proceed safely!

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