Sometimes I get asked by a woman I know in town, “So what are you up to today?” I never have anything to say. I probably sound like I do nothing, really.
Because what I’m “up to” is taking care of people. And an increasing number of animals, but I’ll get to that in a minute. Yesterday immediately upon rising (at 6 AM) I’d made beds, finished laundry, cleaned the kitchen, prepared homemade strawberry shortcake, finished a kitchen sewing project, fed the animals, taken out the recycling, and made my husband a lunch. This was by 9:30 AM.
Today at 11 AM I’ve done the same as listed (minus shortcake) as well as taken our new kitty to the vet for a cursory examination ($119! That diseased little scrap!) and our hen Sophie to have her staples removed (I’m happy to say she is fully recovered although the experience has ruined my enjoyment of crispy skin on fried chicken). I’m riding home with my hale and healthy children and my healthy, happy animals (including a kitten rescue, which is feeling very noble and enjoyable to me at the moment) and I feel like celebrating. And all I’m doing really is taking care of them. I have no other body of work. It’s like I’m constantly feeding, sleeping, washing, rinsing, loving, carrying, listening to, talking, instructing.
I don’t even avail myself of the free childcare that is public school so I could get a break – or make some money.
When I’m not actively taking care of people – and this includes my time watching the kiddos swim, or riding bikes to the park – I’m usually cleaning. Oh wait, shit, that’s taking care of people again! OK, so occasionally I sew. And very occasionally I sew for someone not my kids. I don’t sit down all day except to type and maybe eat one meal. At the end of the day I crash out to a B-movie and snuggling, maybe a few pages of a book (just finished, Lessons From The Fat-O-Sphere and Killers Of The Dream – both excellent!). That’s my R&R. And yeah. I’m aware the “snuggling” is also part of the Mama work.
In other words, nothing I do all day is worth writing home about and I never find a way to present it – especialy to the inquiring friend who doesn’t do what I do, or finds other earthy distractions that always sound more exciting. My life? In the words of Ron Burgundy, “It’s boring.” It only means a whole, hell of a lot to four people, three cats, four chickens, a few friends, neighbors, and family members who receive my home-cooked and home-sewn goods and the favor of childcare, and the many who’ve told me they enjoy reading my blog.