Tuesday, June 5, 2012

I don't, can't and won't.

I am finally done with my long stent at work, well, temporarily at least.  The busyness starts up again in July for a final month.  The reward is bills paid off, less money owed.   I confess it's difficult to get excited about paying bills, rather than, say, a trip to Europe.  But it is what it is.

This extra work has taken a toll on me and on this house.  Things are a mess. I've not had the energy to clean.  I've not had energy period.  All I want to do is sleep, eat and read.  In the meantime the weeds are growing, the laundry is multiplying and dishes may be breeding penicillin.

Where is the woman who took pictures?  Who found the time to sew and knit?  Who planned and cooked meals?  Who gardened?  Who wrote? She is quite clearly MIA.  

When I leave the house I cringe; we are not keeping up with the Joneses.  When I enter the house I cringe -- what if the Joneses come over here?

It's all too easy to feel inadequate.  To feel defeated.  As much as I know in my head I can't do it all; my heart feels as if I should.  I *should* bring home the bacon and care for and maintain the house.  I should exercise, have gorgeous hair and delicate painted toe nails.  I should help my kids with their homework and tuck them in at night.

I should, I should, I should ... and yet.  I don't.  I can't and I won't.

As it stands I'm embodying Eeyore and not doing anything particularly well.  I'm earning money but not enough.  I've managed to clear a path through my house but not to clean it well.  I've showered but not gussied up.  My efforts feel mediocre at best.

After Thursday I have a week off.  I plan to putter and kick back and putter some more. With rest I suspect I'll find my equilibrium and get my mojo back.  In the meantime bear with me and my Eeyorish self.

"The old grey donkey, Eeyore stood by himself in a thistly corner of the Forest, his front feet well apart, his head on one side, and thought about things. Sometimes he thought sadly to himself, "Why?" and sometimes he thought, "Wherefore?" and sometimes he thought, "Inasmuch as which?" and sometimes he didn't quite know what he was thinking about." 


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I hear you on all of this, my dear. The 'keeping up' thing is a trap; perfection is impossible, not achievable, a delusion. "Nothing that is complete breathes." (Porchia)

Have you read the article in the Atlantic about working women? (http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2012/07/why-women-still-can-8217-t-have-it-all/9020/)

Don't be misled by the irritating sensationalist headline and imagery--Slaughter's point is a powerful one, about how women shouldn't get suckered into believing the myth of 'having it all,' and that pursuing happiness and leisure time and balance are healthy and valuable not just for women but for everyone. That maybe it's time to think about a new way for a society to be structured, a new economic and domestic model, where we collectively value the things that truly matter.

You don't have to keep the house clean on your own. It's not your burden to bear, not your responsibility. (You've got, what, four other capable hands at home?) And who says having a house that's clean all the time is a worthwhile way to spend your life in the first place? You don't have to earn tons of money. What's enough--whether money, cleanliness, leisure time, etc.--to be comfortable?

Screw the Joneses. I understand they're miserable company anyway.