Whose Phase Is It Anyway?

When I created the category ‘Phase 3 of X on my blog’, my intent was to focus on the phases experienced by Joe and Charlie. The boys have traveled through the infant phase and toddler phase, and now Joe has entered the Kindergarten phase. As a result, I wanted a place to write about the various cycles and developments. However, as the 2nd week of Kindergarten comes to a close, I can’t help but ask, “Whose phase is it anyway?”

Joe’s first day was uneventful. The days that followed his first day were equally uneventful; that is, the time he spent at a new school and in a new environment were uneventful. At home? Not so uneventful. And, this is the part where I step in and realize, I have entered a new phase; it is called the ‘My child is home with me more’ phase. Um. How long will this phase last?

Yeah, I’ve already written about having to adjust to working at home with a child in the house. But, what about not working at home with a child in the house? Though I am readily available for my boss and coworkers 8hrs a day Monday – Friday, I have a great deal of ‘free’ time to tackle chores and – frankly – do nothing.  And, when my kids were in day-care, they spent a full day in day-care (8am – 5pm). When I got the boys home, I’d have them in bed within 3hrs. So, aside from weekends, there wasn’t much time (or cause) for trouble and discipline.

Earlier this week, I went out to dinner with a friend of mine. She was laughing at me and teasing me about my cushy (time-wise) life of having the boys gone a full day, while I was home working a flexible job. And now – NOW I have a kid with me from 2:30 until bedtime. ACK! What?! I actually have to take care of my kid more than three hours a weekday? Seriously? I suppose you are going to tell me I have to interact with my child, too.

Thank goodness, at least for one more year, I don’t have to pick up my 2nd child until 5pm. I cannot imagine being home with both boys for for so many hours prior to bedtime. I mean, after I give my job 5hrs in a day, I have enough flexibility to do whatever I want with the remaining day (provided my boss can reach me). Just last month, I spent many hours watching and enjoying several movies in the afternoon before picking the boys up at daycare. Now how will I get through my queue of 314 movies on Netflix? Huh? And, they are just about to release the 2009 season of Dexter! When am I suppose to fit that in the schedule? Hmmm … is it wrong to have a 5yr old child watch a drama about a serial killer who only kills serial killers? At least Dexter is killing mean people, right?

And Oprah. This is Oprah’s last season! How am I going to watch O-o-0-o-oprah, when my kid is home with me?! Craziness people. Whose phase is this anyway? And, how long does it last?

Now if you’ll excuse me, my son has homework. We have to read a book together; rather he has to read the book, and I have to observe. You’d think the school would send home something more interesting like “Kiss Me If You Can” by Carly Phillips. But no, we have to read “Babe, the Big Hit” about an elephant in a circus, and I’m guessing there will be no romance. Maybe next week?

Let the Crying Begin

Dear Blogary,

I hadn’t a clue there was a shoe in the air. Yet, it seems the proverbial shoe has dropped. Remember when I said no tears were shed? Not one? Well, I have an update to my post from earlier this week.

Blogary, seems one has to adjust to this new life of school. Seems one has to adjust to this new life of working for a paid gig, while also working as Mom. This is not really news to me, Blogary. Rather, I preferred to sing ‘la la la’ loudly in my head, while moving along with my day.

As a child, when I came home from school, I either sat and watched TV, played inside or went outside to play. Interacting with my Mom wasn’t an option. Well, I could ask her to play Little People with me, but her answer would always be ‘no’. Instead, my Mom spent her time sewing, reading a book or enjoying an afternoon cigarette with a freshly made cup of coffee. (Though she has long since quit smoking, I can still picture her sitting at the counter, enjoying her afternoon ‘smoke’.)

Understand, my Mom worked. She took care of kids inside our house. She had about three kids at a time from infancy through Pre-K. She only worked during the school year. When Summer came, she’d head off to Nova Scotia with me in tow. Woo hoo! Ah, the good ol’ days. I digress.

Blogary, I am a working Mom. You know this. And, you know that prior to Joe starting school, my days were ‘easy’. I dropped the boys off at Suzann’s house in the AM before work, and I picked the boys up in the PM after work. My schedule allowed me the freedom to tackle household chores, as well as meet the needs of my paid gig.

And now? Now, my ‘flexibility’ ends at 1:30 when I am at my boss’ house and 2pm when I am home. Am I moaning and groaning needlessly? Yes, I suppose I am. Though I suspect there are others like me. Still, I’m not sure how my Mom managed to get things done, once the kids were home from school. Perhaps it just takes time. After all, my Mom had 6 kids – who knew how crazy she was with the first two.

After school child care is not an option for us, Blogary. I do not even want to think about Fall break in September. What is Fall break, you ask? It is a week where the kids are home from school. Hmmm . . . my child is home, while I am suppose to be working. Ack. Another need for adjustments. Fall camp is an option, though that takes money. Commence singing ‘La la la’ in head…

Blogary, due to the proverbial shoe dropping last night, we had cereal for supper. I wanted to run to the store and find some Ben & Jerry’s to console my wigged-out self, but refrained (successfully). And the tears shed? Yeah, those were mine, as the reality of adding another ball to my juggling act hit me. Many tears shed. Tons.