Writing consistently is a habit, one that I have clearly not cultivated. So much for posting once a week here.
We will be celebrating my older son’s 8th birthday next week. EIGHT. Oh, my love for him is big. He is both infuriatingly stubborn and prone to crying in frustration and charmingly sweet, always ready for a hug or kiss. I know those days are likely numbered so I am always ready when he is. He is maturing and so independent already. He wakes in the morning and dresses in his school uniform before coming out of his room. He makes his own breakfast and clears his plate. He takes his own bath or shower. He comes home from school, gets a snack and immediately starts on his homework. All of this comes from our giving structure to his life early on, when his strong-willedness was apparent. And we all benefit from his adherence to the order of things now.
G is joy. Pure, unbridled joy. Always. I am so fortunate after having my parenting teeth cut on such a handful in my older son, to enjoy the relative ease of parenting G. Our prolonged time together (I returned to work when my older son was 13 mos but have been home with G all of his 26 months) has made him deeply bonded with and connected to me. He is equally a mama’s and a daddy’s boy, his love is fluid for us both, but he is the heart of my heart.
As for me, I am feeling an itch. I would not quite call it a ‘mid-life crisis’ because I am not in crisis, but I am mindful that I have lived more of my life than I likely have left and am hungry to feed so many aspects of myself. I know that there will not be more children for us, but have recently gotten it in my mind that I want another dog. I have scoured the local shelter and petfinder listings. I became attached to one pup so much that I made a two hour trek to see her, twice, taking both boys with me once. Alas, she was too rambunctious a puppy for our home with a toddler. But, it did help me narrow what I think I would like and that is a small-medium, low-shedding, quiet, sweet, female dog. Our dog is getting up in age, having just turned 10 (or, gosh, is it 11, must check) and I don’t want to be without a dog when she passes. My husband, gawd love him, would prefer no more pets but is humoring me in this pursuit. I jokingly said to him that if my mid-life crisis costs us some botox, a tattoo, and a dog, we’ll be well ahead of the game.
And, yes, I said Botox. I had an appointment for today, in fact, but rescheduled it as I have been sick and getting needles in my face was an intolerable thought. I went in for a consultation at a med-spa owned by a plastic surgeon friend of a friend. Just as a color my gray, I am working on maintaining the best of my face. I’d like to reduce/eliminate the laugh lines under around my eyes and Botox seems to be the most effective and economical way to do that. There is another, newer treatment called ultherapy which used heated ultrasound waves to stimulate collagen, but it is quite spendy (just doing 1/3 of my face would be $1,200 vs maybe $200 for Botox). We’ll see how it turns out.
I don’t know, it is certainly a combination of restlessness and a bit of boredom. You know what they say about idle hands. I’ve settled into this life, this routine, of being a SAHM and as I approach the 5 year (death-knell) anniversary of being unemployed, it is harder and harder to even know what kind of work to look for. We need the additional income and with semi-annual property taxes due in April, I am acutely aware of just how much we do, but it has been so hard for me to focus on finding work. Alas, I must.
I have changed my eating and work-out regimen. I joined a group fitness circuit training studio in town that was recommended by a friend and happened to be running a greatly discounted offer so I do that 3 times a week and cardio barre twice/wk. I abandoned the rules and regulations of Trim Healthy Mama (except for the positive changes I’d already embraced) in favor of an alternate day fasting (ADF) program suggested by my doctor. There are many ADFs to choose from (5:2, 4:3, JUDDD (Johnson’s Up Day Down Day), etc) and I’ve settled on JUDDD. I restrict my calories to around 500 on Tuesdays/Thursdays/Sundays and eat sensibly the other four days of the week. In the first two weeks, I’ve lost 5 pounds. Given my myriad underlying conditions: hypothyroidism, peri-menopause, taking ADs), it has been impossible for me to lose weight. I am NOT giving up, though, and hoping the combination of circuit training and fasting will do the trick to get my system moving.
I feel like I have settled into an unsustainable life as a SAHM. I love being home, I do. But I do need to set my sights on earning a living. What to do, what to do (I feel like a broken record in this regard or maybe just a slacker).