I love eating out at restaurants. It’s something we do too much of, and I’m looking forward to having real time to cook at home once I work from the house). But because we eat out a lot I have noticed things that some servers do that drive me crazy as a parent that I probably never would have thought of before.
You can always tell when the servers have kids or are experienced in dealing with them, because those are the ones that move the cutlery as they bring you to the table. Those are the ones that place the kid’s meal in front of the one of the adults because the plate is hot and the food needs to be cut up.
Things servers who are not experienced with children have done recently that drove me a bit crazy:
Be aware, my dear restaurant friends, that parents talk to each other, and complain to each other, and share experiences good and bad. We talk about kids’ menus, we talk about how we’re treated. We choose how to tip based on whether our child gets scalded because of your carelessness. Be aware.
If you follow me on Twitter you may be aware that I am a huge fan of Rupaul’s Drag Race. There have been four seasons and except for the one that’s just ending I have seen them all multiple times. I love these ladies.
There is something that Rupaul says often: “What other people think of me is none of my business.”
Basically, I need to be concerned with what I think of myself and if you have anything bad to say I don’t need to care – that’s on you. (Rupaul also makes a great sort of speech about this to Tammie at the reunion of season 1 which I tried unsuccessfully to find on youtube).
This is where I’m living right now. I have been very lucky over the past few years to have met people that like me for the person that I have grown to become. I have a wonderful family that loves me for being me.
And dammit, I have things I want to accomplish and I’m damn well going to try.
I try to be kind, I try to consider the feelings of those around me, but I’m not the kid who used to agree with everything her best friend said for fear of being ditched any more.
I have reached a point of change in my life.
The stress of the past year has put me near burnout, and a lot of things just seem to be tests.
I am living in the time of my life when I have decided to say ‘Fuck it, I’ll try.”
I can’t keep going the way I have been, so I might as well put myself out there and try something different.
Quit my job to become a work at home mom? Sure
Start a new project and ask for help to get it off the ground? Yes – and it’s a great idea and I still need help.
Build a presentation after a challenge from a women who has taken charge of her own life? Yep.
(And thanks very much for the opportunity, Dee).
Jump at the opportunities that some wonderful people have decided to offer me? Why yes I will.
I’m stepping into the ring and I’m taking whatever is thrown at me. And I’m going to be successful. I am. Because that’s what I have to be. I have a family to take care of and we’re building a life here.
And while I’m doing it, I’m going to dance to this song, because I’m a female phenomenon.
We’re at that point in our move where there’s really nothing we can do right now. All the things that are left to pack are things we will need in the next two weeks. All the things we’re getting rid of have either been dropped off for donation or are posted online for sale. The movers are booked.
The little things left to buy – paint, shower curtains, and my big grocery trip to full our new pantry – will come this weekend or next week.
Next week we will have the keys and we can take stuff over in the evenings, but right now we’re just here, stuck.
This is the part where I start focusing on the minute details and driving Joe crazy. I’m thinking about layout and decor that can’t really be decided until we get in and see the house empty. I’m thinking about the small touches that will need to wait until the bigger stuff is taken care of.
Today I’m home sick with the kid, Joe is away on business, and I’m surfing to see if I can find a nice mirror and shelf for the entry way. I’m thinking about the new desk that I’m going to buy that will help me on my new adventure (longer rather than wide because that’s how I tend to spread out).
I’m trying to figure out when I’ll buy the painting supplies and how we’ll fit all the final details of the move into next weekend with the wedding we’re going to (congratulations Jesse and Alison).
The next two weeks are going to be very busy and exciting and I feel like a real grown-up with a house and a kid and good quality couches that aren’t from Ikea.
It’s going to be fun.
I have spent that last two mornings fighting with my daughter. The problems start when I attempt to take off her overnight diaper. She doesn’t want that. She doesn’t want a new diaper, she doesn’t want to get dress – moreover she doesn’t like that dress or those pants or that shirt.
God help you if you suggest socks.
It used to be that if you told her she was going to daycare (yay daycare!) or if you told her Daddy would take her out to breakfast (yay breakfast!) we could get her out the door. These past two days? Not so much.
She’s grumpy, she cries, she kicks and throws things.
We give her options – used to work, doesn’t now. We ask her if she wants Mommy or Daddy’s help – used to work, doesn’t now.
We give her time outs for all the things she knows she’s not supposed to do.
For two days it has taken up to 30 minutes for us to convince our child that she can’t leave the house without clothes. It takes so long that it makes it almost impossible to take a step back and breathe before starting again because I have to get to work.
This is two like I’ve not seen it before.
It’s a good thing she’s cute.
I pretty sure you’re making some bad decisions. You’re not exercising and you know your diet leaves a lot to be desired. You’re very focused on all these exciting ideas and you’re happy about them and moving forward to get things done, but you can’t let your health slip.
If you die, you’re not going to be able to enjoy this time with your daughter and you’re not going to be able to build this website or see your children’s books published. You know this.
You’ve been through all this before. Your hormones are wacky and there are things you have to avoid, there are diseases that you’re genetically predisposed to, and you make it worse if you’re fat. Moreover you know that once you let yourself get fatter, it’s that much harder to lose the weight.
You know you’re out of control and you’re letting yourself get away with things and you have to stop. Too much chocolate, too much sugar, too much eating out and making excuses. You’re not getting enough sleep, you’re not drinking enough water and you’re not exercising at all.
You know that exercising makes you feel good.
Your mood is good, you’re happy and moving forward, but we have to make sure that when you get to where you’re going you have the energy to do all the things you’re so looking forward to.
Amy, we need you to take better care of yourself and think about the consequences you may be facing.
I’ve known for a long time that I was probably leaving my job. At the same time I knew that my passion for politics and current events would not disappear. I also know that there are voices missing in Canadian politics and after reading Joanne Bamberger‘s Mothers of Intention and seeing all of these sites women have been building to create communities where their voices can be heard, I got an idea.
Canada needs that.
And I’m going to make a go of it.
I have purchased the domain absoluteequality.ca and I have set up a fundraising page on IndieGoGo.com (you can find it here). Money raised will go to designing the site and paying writers while I work on building a reputation.
If you’re interesting in having your voice heard please let me know. I’m hoping to launch in July – maybe in time for Canada Day.
“I do not want to be the angel of my home. I want for myself what I want for other women, absolute equality. After that is secured, then men and women can take turns being angels.” Agnes MacPhail.
Seven years ago now I walked into the students newspaper office at Carleton for a job interview. I was looking for the editor, mispronounced his name, and sat down to wait for him.
I was a big surprise when a big guy with blue hair and cords walked into the office and introduced himself to me. I think it was the next afternoon that he called to offer me the job.
By the time we started dating at the end of that school year the blue hair was gone.
We had become friends over the course of the few months we’d been working together and it started to feel like maybe their was something more.
We kissed for the first time on March 27, 2005. We moved in together that September, in December we got a dog. In July of 2006 we got engaged and our wedding was in October of 2007.
It was all ridiculously quick and I would have judged if it had been someone else, but when it works it works.
It doesn’t seem as though it’s been seven years. I doesn’t seem possible that we’ve been parents for two.
We’ve been through a lot, my Joe and me. We made a family.
Now we’re moving together into more excited and challenging times and we’re doing it together because that’s how we naturally are. We’re meant to be.
My grandfather was in the Navy, so is my half-brother, I am a Navy girl, so maybe that’s why I feel so comfortable entering these uncharted waters.
Ten years ago my life plan was entirely different. I was going to be a great journalist, I was going to travel the world – by myself. I didn’t foresee ever getting married, I certainly wasn’t fit to be a mother.
Ten years ago I was on a path, and when I fell off that path it was very painful. It was confusing and I didn’t know where to turn next. It took me almost a year to find my new path, but in 2004 I decided that I would switch things up. I went back to school and that decision has changed this forever after.
I made new friends, I learned new things, I got a job that helped me build up my skills and confidence again. Oh, and I met my husband.
This man who convinced me that I did want to be married. This best friend that I never want to be without. And we started building our life together. It got bumpy along the way, but we’ve been through it all together, and we have added a dog and a daughter.
A daughter that has turned my world upside down.
Even when I was pregnant I didn’t know how I felt about her. I didn’t think I would be a good mother. I didn’t think I would know what to do with her. She’s only two and she continues to prove me wrong every step of the way.
She has changed me so much that I don’t want to be without her. I want to cuddle with her in the mornings and read to her in the afternoons. Share my lunch with her, take her for walks. Paint, draw, imagine and play.
And so I am leaping off my path again – the path in which I am a working mother who rushes in the morning and takes the kid to daycare, is always exhausted at the end of the day and lives in a house that’s never quite clean or tidy. I am going to be a stay at home mom – the 19 year old me would balk – and I am going to take care of myself and my family. I am going to work and make my ideas come to life and define myself in a totally new role.
This time it isn’t going to hurt. This time I am changing into a butterfly.