In case you were wondering, I have been intentionally avoiding self-portrait Tuesdays. I've never liked the camera - probably since birth - and having photos taken of me is torture enough, let alone voluntarily taking photos of myself. So, although I'm posting something today, I may never post another self-portrait... we'll see. This was taken during a quiet moment during Brynne's nap this afternoon; I don't pretend to think this is a particularly good or artistic photo - it is what it is.
Hmmmm, maybe I should pluck those eyebrows more than once every three months!
I really related to Stephanie's self-portrait post today - motherhood has probably never been what I expected. Maybe it was the season finale of Six Feet Under, but I've been thinking about *big* topics lately. I was a little blue the other night because I realized that when Jerry and I are old and Brynne is long grown up leading her own life, we will long to re-live the days we're living now - days where she scampers across the grass hunting for sticks and nuts - days where an honest, gut-busting laugh is as easy as a little tickle - days where all she wants is for mommy and daddy to sit with her and read books, color, and play games. And yet, while we are living these moments, our minds are distracted with work, the house, bills, our own hobbies, what's for dinner, and our own silly gripes with each other. I've heard the phrase that youth is wasted on the young, and now I feel that the joys of parenthood are sometimes wasted on parents in their twenties and thirties.
Grandparents have it made; they have much more experience and perspective under their belts, they have usually reached a more comfortable place with their finances and life situation, and upon retirement they are able to focus completely on what is truly important to them. When my mom was here a couple of weeks ago to help with Brynne, I watched Brynne thriving with the constant attention and stimulation - always something new and fun to do with Grandma. Each day she went to bed exhausted and happy, her mind filled with all the wonderful things she had learned and experienced with Grandma. It's much the same now that she's back in preschool two mornings a week - new activities, new friends, and new lessons await her with every class. I'm frustrated that I can't keep up with her interests and activities, but at the same time I don't want to ignore my own needs and goals. The worst part is that the biggest victim in all of this has been my relationship with my husband. As we approach our seventh anniversary next week, I realize how little time we have with each other. During the week we're lucky to get two hours together in the evening, and by that time we are so mentally, emotionally, and physically exhausted that all we want to do is vegetate in front of the tv, read a magazine, surf the computer, or play computer games (Jerry!). Since we don't have any family nearby, it's nearly impossible to schedule a "date night" except on the rare occasions when family is visiting. How does everyone else handle this? I'm sure my current less-than-happy state is temporary, but I'm definitely pondering life, priorities, and family - so many things (work, the driveway, our ailing car, etc.) seem to be fading fast into the background.