So, I did it. I did what I never thought I would do or at least what I promised myself I would never do. I sent Will one of those “I need” emails. Do you know the kind I am referring to? The ones that go something like this:
I need a break.
I need a full day away from the house (sans children).
I need to NOT put the kids to bed one night. Just one night.
I need to feel appreciated for what I do on a daily basis.
I need, I need, I need, blah, blah, blah, poor pitiful me, sniff, sniff, sooooobbbbbbbb!!!!
And in case you’re thinking that my “needs” aren’t so bad (please tell me you all were thinking that?), there are certainly some I omitted because of my colorful language or biting subject matter. I was blunt; I was rude; I was downright mean. And you know how Will replied (after calling me to let me vent even more, of course)?
Please, please feel free to escape this weekend. Go to Charlottesville. Get a hotel room. Read your kindle. Take a walk. Sleep until after the sun rises. Run through the law school campus. Go to Starbucks. Go to Bodos. The day is yours.
Wow. Okay. Obviously my number four “need” does not apply and has never applied.
So why do I feel inadequate, particularly when I am married to the most appreciating man on Earth? I realize now that my issues aren’t with how much Will expresses his recognition for my days, but that no amount of appreciation would be sufficient during certain weeks – particularly this month (January; post-Christmas blues anyone?) and during George’s potty training boot camp. It’s not helping that I am sick, George’s bladder is on strike, and we’ve got another cold, wet day in the forecast. I don’t know how to fix my frustrations except to escape for a day and focus on something (someone) other than Frances and George.
I also need to stop with the endless comparisons to other mothers. The danger of blogging (and of reading other blogs) is that you find yourself looking at others’ homes, children, vacations, friends, and abilities (to name a few) with envy. How the heck does she have three children under the age of 5 and find time to refinish her hardwood floors? How can she be so fit, tan and happy and still manage to cook chicken n’ dumplings for her adorable brood who apparently play endlessly on the swing set in the backyard while she vacuums with her new Dyson? Why can’t I have a local group of friends who go on once-a-week girls’ nights out (or the much coveted girls’ weekends) and children who watch movies for the better part of the next morning so I can sleep in? Admittedly, these selfish thoughts have all crossed my mind. And I find myself feeling inadequate for not having what appears to come so easily to others.
There is a great speech from “The Golden Girls,” one of my all-time favorite shows (I have seen every episode at least 10 times – a modest estimate). Blanche, the self-described harlot of the group, becomes jealous of Dorothy, the smart divorcee, and her new-found boyfriend. I call this the “Magenta” speech:
“Magenta…that’s what I call it when I get that way. All kinds of feelings tumbling all over themselves. Well you know, you’re not quite blue, because you’re not really sad. And although you’re a little bit jealous you wouldn’t say you’re green with envy. And every now and then you realize you’re kind of scared but you’d hardly call yourself yellow…I hate that feeling. Just hate it. And I hate the color magenta. That’s why I named it that. Magenta.”
And that’s exactly how I feel today. Magenta.
I will not likely take Will up on his generous offer to travel to Charlottesville this weekend; but just knowing that it is an option is overwhelming (in a good way, don’t worry). Instead, I think I’ll go to my parents’ house for the night—drink good wine, sit by their gas fireplace, talk about everything and nothing all at the same time.
If that can’t help me I may just be a lost cause. But it will help; I am certain. Today is magenta but tomorrow will be seaside blue, candy apple red, or (if I'm really lucky) moss green.
Happy Wednesday everyone!