Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Being a Grown-up Isn't So Bad Sometimes

I kind of feel sorry for my kids. We were all up until 11 last night because of sports (!) and this morning proved to be one of those deliciously rainy days best spent in bed. But, no, they were up at 7 and soon heading off to school. After I dropped them off, I got to come back home, have 3 cups of tea, do laundry, and read blogs.

While they had to hit the ground running with math and reading and Latin, surrounded by the voices and coughs and personalities of 16 other people, I have had to interact with no one and it's almost 11 a.m. They have to be "ON" for the next 7 hours-- polite and attentive and diligent and studious-- in a very public arena. I, however, can screen my calls, hide out in my office, and focus on the projects in front of me.

Both kids need alone time, but I don't see that they get much of it. I, who never thought I'd ever have alone time again, have found I have a decent amount now that the kids are in school all day, and I go to work just 20 hours a week. If you are home with little kids, there will be the promise of peace and quiet sometime in your future. In fact, I try to store up all of that silence during the day so that when I do pick up the kids, I'll be ready for interaction and running around until bedtime...which seems to get later and later and later.

And while I purposely chose a job that I can leave at the office, a huge difference from my life as a high school English teacher, the kids have to dive into Acts 2 and 3 (homework and sports) as soon as they get home.

The kids say they don't want to be grown-ups, because our lives are so boring, but I think they might be pleasantly surprised. In general, adults don't have to ask to go to the bathroom or get a drink of water. We eat when and what we want. We get to choose how to best fulfil the responsibilities in front of us. We don't have to be good at everything, all of the time, from physical fitness to pre-Algebra to self-control. We get evaluated, but not graded.

I know the adult life can often be a grind, and that we have immense financial and career pressures our kids do not yet face. I know that a 20-hour work week is not realistic for most people. Heck-- it's not even that realistic for me! But today I'm feeling grateful just to be an adult.

Now off to work...


Kristina P. said...

Amen! Although, sometimes, I wish I didn't have all this responsibility!

Ellen aka Ellie said...

Without an ounce of spite, Being a Grown-up Isn't So Bad Sometimes when you have a 20 hour a week job.

I've always pretty much always worked two jobs and been a mom, although Mac is away at grad school now, so I can't wave the Mom flag much any more!

But even though I have summers off, I work then too...a little less. It is glorious and precious.

Kids do have it hard, I would agree, but mine just took a recess, and that's not so bad.

jillfuller13 said...

Thanks for this post! Just yesterday one of my sons was complaining about doing homework. I took the time to, patiently (ok, that's a lie), explain to him that he just got to have a friend over after school and he has been doing nothing but having fun for hours! He very patiently (ok, that's a lie too) asked if I would rather go to school all day rather than go to work. I of course lovingly (I'm a liar) said "School" (knowing in my mind that was not the truth). So, thanks for the post and the reminder that being a kid is hard (and that I'm a big fat liar!)

purejoy said...

well said.
it's exhausting being a kid… but they have energy for both of us!
it's exhausting being a mom, but the hugs are our energy.
i love the silence in my day. and a flexible schedule. i slept in until 8:30 today. a rare indulgence.
thanks for an excellent post!

Anonymous said...

Hear hear.

jbhat said...

No kidding right? Paying bills sucks but I'm so glad I can do what I want when I want!

Anonymous said...

Amen! I'd like to freeze time for a while. They're still young enough not to have (too much) attitude but big enough to generally do for themselves. Life is good . . . And I still feel like I'm reaping the "payback" from all those hard (but wonderful) baby years.

Brenda Susan said...

I so agree with you! We just got back from a week with my mom in the hospital in another state and constantly surrounded by family and doctors etc. It was so good to get back home. Then the first two nights home our sons and their girls wanted to come over. I asked Hubs when the empty nest would be empty again!

Ruby Hawk said...

Kids have little time to relax and enjoy being kids. Too much pressure in today's world.