I hope that you enjoy this series, I hope you find some new writers to follow, I hope this helps them out and I hope we can all learn something from them.
Tammy. Tammy, Tammy, Tammy. Where should I begin? She was one of my very first internet blogging friends and could very well be the first one I got close to on "the other side", on our personal profiles. I very distinctly remember the first time I encountered her. It was a day that a post I had written about the fear of losing my father coming true was featured and she reached out to me because of it.
She lost her mother, I lost my father, and there the shared paths met though we'd been walking similar ones for years without knowing it. It doesn't seem like they've diverged much since. We know personal loss, we know grief, we know struggle, we know resilience. We know that sometimes when one of us poofs from the internet for a bit too long, the other will poke around and make sure we are okay. She is one of those people that I just know I would get along with just as well in person as we do online. Probably even better, actually. I adore her.
You can find her on her blog, World's Worst Moms here, on Twitter here and on Facebook here.
I could write about her forever, but I'll turn it over to her now. Ladies and gentlemen, Tammy.
Sitting in the nest for now
I dropped the kids off for their first day back to school today, and when I got home, something hit me. I was running around the house, doing all the stuff that I'd put off because it'd been the last week of summer, and I realized -- when they leave for college, it's really going to suck.
My kids are 9 and 10, so projecting approximately a decade into the future may be a bit hysterical, but that's just how I roll. Anyway, I sat upstairs, folding clothes, and thinking, I'm going to be one of those psychotic, empty-nest mothers who freaks out when her kids leave. Holy crap.
There is no way I ever wanted to be that person.
But here's the problem: I like my kids. I like my family. Especially now. I've seen the dark side of how crappy parenting can be when you have post-partum depression and your kid has behavioral problems up the wahzoo. I know how it feels to go to bed crying every night with the mixed emotions of guilt and relief because your day is finally over.
But right now, I'm in the zone. Right now, I'm okay unplugging for days at a time so we can go on a last-minute road trip. I'm okay spending the entire weekend reading Harry Potter because the kids really, really, really want to finish the fifth book before school starts. I'm okay with the messy house.
So here's my existential conundrum: all that stuff is already over. All of the road-tripping and reading and messiness is already gone. They were moments in time that I can still remember experiencing and saying to myself, "This is going to be over so soon. Tomorrow you'll remember how you thought that this would be over so soon." And I do. I remember. And it makes me feel like a crazy person. Like I'm trying to hold onto water shooting out of a hose.
I could force myself to take a step back from my family. I could go out and find some new hobbies, new friends -- something that would take up my time and energy. And if I were feeling like I were losing "me" (and at certain times, I have), then yes, I would. But right now, it'd be disingenuous.
I guess what I'm saying is that as long as the hose is running, I'm going to try and drink as much as I can. I would rather be the crazy woman who sits sobbing at the facet when it finally runs dry than the one who stands by and watches the water spill onto the ground because she wants to get used to being thirsty.
And I'll fill that nest when I come to it.