I am in my bedroom, blaring Roxette and pretending that I don't hear the crying babies in my house who are supposed to be taking their naps. I am pretending that I don't have cravings, all these years later, for a cigarette every now and then. I am pretending that I could, if I chose to, jump into my old 1989 Ford Tempo and drive out to the frozen lake, to sit alone in the beach grass and clear my thoughts. I am pretending that life was easier when there was only me to take care of, and only a waitress job to show up for. I am pretending that if I wanted to, I could chop all my hair and dye it red, or save up for a one-way ticket to Hawaii to be a bicycle tour guide (something I was once this close to doing).
Reality check, right? Yeah. In actuality, I couldn't even run out and touch the curb and run back. In actuality, I do need to consider the feelings of my husband and kids. They are not going anywhere, and I am not going to be a bicycle tour guide any time soon.
It is Christmas, so maybe I have the holiday blues, but I find myself wishing for all things and nothing at all. I am wanting to freeze time and keep my children young and loving and full of joy, while at the same time longing to wake up and wonder what I will do today. I look up at the clouds in the high, blue sky and think of track meets. I think of track meets! I was in 8th grade, but back then I was good at something, and I went out on the track and I did it. Afterward I could lie on the grass, eat a granola bar, and look at the clouds.
So I will trade my fantasies of Camel Lights for the plastic camel in the Little People nativity on the end table. I will close this post and go in and retrieve my crying babies, and I will say a prayer for my cousin, Ryan, who would trade every day of the rest of his life to see his son one more time. It is hard being a parent; being a mom; being a stay-at-home mom; being a never-gets-a-break-from-even-one-of-her-kids homeschool mom; being a homeschool mom in another country. My life is very hard. No one would argue with me on that one. But a grateful heart I should have if I have any wisdom at all.