27 August 2003

Strange days

I am in a bit of a funk these past couple days. We got back from our weekend away all of us were more or less tossed back into the thick of it immediately upon our return. Prince Consort had to work a full day starting literally as soon as we drove back into town. The rest of us continued on to home where we were met with the mess that we left behind and the many things that needed attention. I tell myself each time before I go out of town that I am going to get the house really clean so that I don't return to a mess, but it just never seems to work out that way. I guess that the time to start on a blitz of house cleaning is not when you are trying to get things organized and packed for leaving. I have a new goal that this fall and winter I will slowly work my way through each room of the house and purge like crazy. I give up so much vital energy to the clutter that surrounds me. These "things" that none of us really care about just suck so much out of us. Some days I just want to get a big ol' truck and load it up with everything then send it away. I think that is part of why going camping and such is so peaceful. You only have what you need with you and nothing else to take up space in your surroundings or your brain.

Goddess in Training #1 and #2 start back to school in a week. I am really conflicted about this. On one hand I am really looking forward to a bit of calm around the house while they are gone. They do help out with Goddess in Training #3 a great deal when I want to slip in some work or computer time, but overall, despite their outward independence, they are still a huge demand on my energy. In plain earthly terms - they generate an amazing amount of mess around the house, which despite my urging, nagging, preaching and even screaming at times, they just don't seem to be buying the whole idea of cooperative working and living. When it comes down to it they still expect mom to take care of things. I need to work on this. grrrrrrr. On a more psychic level, they are very needy. This is where my conflict comes in. It is so hard to guide them through the myriad of choices they are facing at this time in their lives. I look back at when I was their age and I shudder. Not a pleasant time of life. I want to both let them experience life and learn from it, but at the same time protect them from its pain and horror. I want to teach them how to be strong but remain compassionate. I want to teach them how to take pride in their appearance but not feel the need to fit in a predefined mold of beauty. I want them to be comfortable in social situations, but I don't want to force them into interacting with people they don't want to. It is so hard. And it takes so much time. They spend so much time in school where they are taught only the barest minimum that they have to be in order to pass. Schools here are in such crisis and so much is being sacrificed in the name of budget cuts. What is really being sacrificed is my children's future. I hate to send them to a place where I feel they are getting short changed so terribly. There is also the problem of being the odd ones in the crowd. We are not your typical suburban family by any stretch of the imagination. It is hard for me as a secure and established adult to find my space in this community, it is so very much harder for them as awkward pre-teens. I feel such guilt for placing my kids in this situation. By itself this time of life is full of self doubt and finding your tribe. My poor kids are more or less left to create their own tribe. I just pray that I have given them enough strength and confidence to withstand the pressure and cruelty that faces them. I wish I could keep them protected and happy for all their life.

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