Caution: This May Sound a Bit Melodramatic and Whiny.
***NOTE: If the person who reads this happens to work with me, please excuse my ramblings, and please don’t go getting me fired. In fact, maybe you just shouldn’t read this post.
It seems like nowadays there just aren’t enough hours between sunrise and sunset. And it’s the middle of the summer, a week past the longest day of the year. I guess I’m getting used to being at work all day, but I can’t help but feel that I’m really missing out on what’s important to me. Maysen has started rolling over, back to front, and not only did I miss the first time, and not only did Peggy our day care gal tell me the baby had been rolling around all day, but when I excitedly told Ronny about how I had seen her roll over for the first time, and that I had actually caught it on tape, he said, “yeah, she’s been doing that all week.”
Seriously? All week? Whaaaat?!?! Sigh…
That implies that I’ve missed out on like four or five days of this monumental change – isn’t every bit of development monumental at this age? – with my daughter and I’ve been totally oblivious to it? That sucks. And what else sucks is that Maysen’s happiest hours take place during the day. By the time evening rolls around and I’ve picked her up from day care or taken her out of Daddy’s arms, she’s usually tired and cranky, ready to eat and go to bed. So now that I’m actually paying someone else to experience my own baby’s happy smiles, coos and milestones, I’m selling myself the short end of the stick. I get about 20 minutes of smiling Maysen when we get home, and then it’s straight to whiny, crabby and then sleepy Maysen. It really bums me out. How the heck am I supposed to see her do all of her cute things when she’s swaddled and either wailing or sleeping? At least I get to see her adorable little pouty whiny “I’m too tired so I’m gonna cry it out” face. It’s friggin’ adorable, darnit, and I can’t help but laugh when she does it.
At least we have our mornings when we entertain ourselves while I get ready for work. I’ve never sung so much in my life…well, except maybe the Camp Adventure days, but I digress.
There was a time not so long ago when I would just say “screw it” and just quit my job and not worry about having health insurance and a steady income. But things have changed. At what point did I lose direction and succumb to grown-up-hood? I’m not ready for that. I’m not ready to have to worry about a mortgage, a car payment, health insurance and IRA contributions. But wait…um…I already DO worry about those things!
When I was younger, in a stage of my life which my dad called ‘footloose and fancy-free’, I made a deal with myself – a pact – that I would never sell out. I would never become complacent, that I would never work in a cubicle, and that I would never be in a job that didn’t challenge me mentally, intellectually or creatively. I told myself I would never live in the soulless, stucco-slathered suburbs or wear a stuffy suit to work. I told myself that I would always be in a place where I was learning every single day, thinking, and being inspired. I told myself, in so many words, that I would never become apathetic, atrophic, or find myself in a position where I wished my life away. I told myself I would never settle.
And now look where I’ve landed. I don’t remember the last time I actually learned something at work. I’m underutilized. My mind is wasted and therefore has started the downward spiral toward utter atrophy and to-the-core ennui. If I take my nose out of the grind and take a look around I realize that I’m trapped. We own our house. We need health insurance. I accepted my job with the hope (and the promise from my then boss) that it would lead me somewhere, to better experience, to a place where I would finally get to write for a living, but I’m stuck in a position with no potential for growth, a position that, over the last 2 ½ years has never left me feeling fulfilled.
So why not find another job? Teaching yoga doesn’t pay the big bucks and I don’t have the time, motivation or energy to finish my book. I’m not good at anything else. I don’t know how to do anything else. Ronny wants me to make the change. He knows that I’m not happy where I am. But I can’t. Not now. Not until we have security. Not until we have a plan.
Is there a point in life when it’s too late to follow your dreams? Is there a glass ceiling of sorts that makes it impossible to drop everything and be a kid again? Have I crossed that threshold and is there no turning back? Will I be stuck in this situation forever? I’m no longer the fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants type of girl that I was in my early twenties. I wish I could be, and I still think like that girl, but, like I said before and to my chagrin, I’m a grown-up now.
I would love nothing more than to have the freedom to just play. To take Maysen to the beach at the drop of a hat. To have her sit with me watching me paint or sew or collage or learn to play guitar or write…damnit, write…until she’s old enough to join me in the fun. Until she’s old enough to dip her chubby little fingers into the paint and glitter and smear it all around into a beautiful mess. I want to inspire her to be creative and to be true to herself. But how can I do that if I can’t teach her by example? How can I do that without being a hypocrite.
My heart is breaking.
But on a lighter note, look at this adorable baby:
By the way, this afternoon I experienced another first, and a wonderful one at that. Maysen has started to lean her head into me and to roll into me. We were lying on the bed, side by side, her on her tummy and me resting my head on my elbow. I was singing to her in spanish, and she looked up at me, smiled, then leaned her head against my cheek and rolled into my chest. My heart just about melted right out of my body. I thought it was an accident, but she did it a few times. Oh, this baby makes me swoon. I’m hopelessly in love.