September 7, 2009
Back to School: Labor Day
Today is Creative Writing Monday. Oma's lesson: Write Away: Labor Day.
Prompt: Write a paragraph about your philosophy of work. Thought questions: Is work worthwhile for it's own sake, or does it have to have a monetary value? How are you teaching your kids to work? Did your parents make work fun or was it something to get finished before you could have fun?
After a few hours of mulling this over, while cleaning the house, this is what came out:
On New Year's Day I semi-jokingly told my sister-in-law, "I have two resolutions this year. One: have this baby. Two: stay sane." Trust me, of the two resolutions, pushing a 9 pound, 2 ounce baby out of my body was a piece of cake. Since that point of no return, there have been many moments sitting on the couch in a sleep deprived stupor. Fed newborn relaxed in my weary arms. Active toddler requiring, demanding, or sweetly seeking my whole attention. Three days of dishes rotting in the sink. The garbage overflowing with tiny, dirty diapers. The fridge empty.
I sit here, on the couch, in a sleep deprived stupor, drool on the corner of my lips, pitying myself, "Why can't I get all of this done?" "I'm so tired, I'm going to vomit." "All I want is a clean house." "Why won't Brian do more?" (Because a husband who works full-time, does the dishes, bounces newborn and entertains toddler is, clearly, not enough for my irrational sleep deprived mood.) Just as my pity party really starts to pick up I remember what a wise man once told me, "Forget yourself and go to work."
My hesitant thighs lift my heavy body from the well molded cushions. I place Oliver in his bouncy seat, eying him a moment, making sure he won't fuss. I browse through iTunes deciding on It's a Hard Knock Life. Not because it's great pity party music (although it definitely fits the bill), but because it's Isabella's favorite dancing song, and if I put it on repeat it should keep her busy, bouncing up and down, for a good 15 minutes. I rush to the kitchen sink, slide on my favorite pink dish gloves, turn on the steaming tap water and start scrubbing. What seems like moments later, with sweat dripping down my brow and soap bubbles filling the sink I am singing, "You'll stay up 'til this dump shines like the top of the Chrysler Building!" Thoughts of my life, my family, and my ability to work fills my uplifted heart with joy. Tears blur my vision as I watch my smiling Isabella bounce up and down, between the mountains of laundry.
**If you want to help edit my work, I'd love some feedback on this one. Please e-mail me with any editing suggestions.