Friday, September 19, 2008

I'm Going to Boot Camp

My mother, God rest her, was a lot of things, but she certainly wasn't a housekeeper. Until we moved into her parents' house when I was late into my fifth grade year, I never really experienced living full-time in a clean environment. At that age, or at least for me, I think one's sense of neat-freakiness is already established. Unfortunately, I missed out. Of course, that's probably one giant excuse for my messy demeanor. Nevertheless, I still didn't learn much of how to clean house.

My mom's mom kept a very clean house until her fibromyalgia and arthritis got bad enough to make it too painful to clean as much as she used to. My dad's mom keeps a spotless house. I'm talking this shack sparkles. Not only does it sparkle, it constantly smells like apple cinnamon or cinnamon spice and any scent combination of the like. Her linens are cool and soft and smell of cedar and fresh fabric softener. She can host a family dinner for 20 and have her place back to its usual immaculate state in less than an hour.

This is the kind of house I want - right down to the cedar-smelling sheets. My Granny is definitely more than a housewife. She held down a full-time career during the raising of all her children and to this day at the vibrant age of 70, she's still a 9-5 accountant. I just wish I could figure out how to shove this fat, lazy self into the the Susie Homemaker with a Career mold.

I feel like the reason for my recent "funk" is definitely the fact that I'm not as organized as I'd like. Of course, this causes tension between DH and me because he feels he brings home the [turkey] bacon and I should clean it up, put it on the plate, and then do the dishes. That's an issue all in itself, but he's right - I could at least clean up the joint.

My desk at work and my school materials are always pristine as far as being organized goes. It drives me crazy to be any other way, so why is my home (and car) always in disarray? I have no idea, but I want it to change. NOW!

I have decided since I'm not actually in a house all to my own and I still have help, I should take this time to learn to clean. I'm going to force it on myself. I want my home to smell like cinnamon spice and everything nice, so I'm sending myself to cleaning boot camp. I will actually draw up a chart, just like in kindergarten (minus the gold stars...maybe...we'll see) and check off chores as I go. I know that it will make my husband happy, and it will certainly make me happier to be in a more tidy environment.

Cleanliness is next to Godliness? I don't know, but I can see how it's true. Organization is not only important in keeping a nice house, but also in religious, marital, and studious items as well. This new version of my funkified self has fallen short in many areas other than cleaning. I've gotten lazy in many other aspects of my life and I know that it's all baby steps to get back to where I want to be. I'm going to start with cleaning my house, and then I'll move on to more "housekeeping" of other sorts.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Why an expectant mother shouldn't watch baby shows

While I was waiting for my teeth whitening trays to season, I decided to flip on the tube. I scanned through the programs, trying to find something remotely entertaining on the daytime line up. I happened upon TLC's A Baby Story, followed by Bringing Home Baby. Since DH was on the couch laptopping nerdy things (as usual), I decided he wouldn't really care if I subjected us to an hour of "girly shows." What I didn't know is that when it was over, I'd be somewhat emotionally distraught.

I'd watched the shows several times before while dreaming and pondering what my future children and pregnancy(ies) might be like. I always found it adorable how the courageous mommy would be wheeled into the delivery room while the I'm-just-going-to-pretend-I'm-not-going-to-barf daddy stood supportively by her side as she writhed in pain and birthed their little bundle of joy.

This time it wasn't so enjoyable. This time I couldn't ignore the pain and suffering and I certainly didn't find it as "viewing pleasure." In fact, for the first time, I had the inward and outward realization that, "HOLY *&^%!! This is going to be ME in a few months!!" I sat in sheer horror as I watched, though mostly blurred, the amount of blood and carnage that poured from that poor woman's body.

After that was over, the next show was about Baby's first 36 hours at home. I watched as the zombie-like sleep-deprived parents tried to muster enough strength to smile into the camera as they wiped slimey yellowish dung from their new baby's behind.

Don't get me wrong, it's not like I didn't KNOW all of this before. But before, to me, women with children were like some sort of special breed built to handle the battles of mommyhood. They smell naturally like baby powder and their vocabulary simply consists of all things baby. It's just it used to be THOSE ladies with kids. Now it's ME with a baby on the way, and it's extremely surreal.

If everything turns out okay, God willing, soon it will be me up to my elbows in poopy. Will I be able to lie to all my friends, "Oh, it's just like a bad backache. You don't remember the pain," like everyone has lied to me!? How will I not strangle DH when he ever-so-cutely "demands" his evening tea when I'm bouncing a baby on my hip? Will I too adjust to zombie life?

My life has been nothing but adaption to superficial procedures - such as learning to wake up to an alarm clock, use to plan my day and a machine to communicate with other humans. Now because of sights of needles and drugs and sterile rooms and the thought of people in scrubs soon hovering over my naked business and prodding me with steel instruments and monitors, I fear most the most natural process life has ever known. OH THE IRONY!

When does the animalistic instinct overpower the logic and kick me into mommy mode?!

For now, I think I'm just going to avoid any and all TLC daytime programming until I can figure this all out!!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

I hate more than ever to say, "I told you so."

I was standing in the kitchen making dinner when the phone rang. No number appeared in the caller ID box, so I considered ignoring it. I picked it up to hear the telltale crackle of an international call. It was my friend from Libya.

I heard her voice shake from desperation as she told me as soon as she got to Libya the fighting with her father began and how the return ticket he had promised her was a completely broken deal.

She said he had made her swear that she would not discuss her return to the US with anyone. However, her dad's two brothers cornered her and began telling her she was ruining the family by leaving Libya again, and that she could not be a real Muslim or Arab living in the US.

When she later questioned her father about her ticket, he said she had broken the code of silence and therefore he was not responsible for holding up his end of the bargain. It was all a trick.

She went on and on about the drama that had been unfolding over the last week. The whole time my blood was boiling.

She then said, "He [her dad] told me I could go, but I'd have to take mama. I don't want to take her. I'll find some other way."

I exploded! I told her, "No. You get on that plane. I don't care if you have to marry someone or bend over backwards, you get on the plane to the US and come back. I told you. I TOLD you! Everyone told you this would happen and still you thought you could just do whatever. Get on the plane, and come home. Do whatever it takes! We all told you and now we can't help you."

I just can't get over the fact that we all tried to help and still she was so arrogant to believe she could handle it and she could make it all better. Now she's stuck in a country where no one can help, and I'm here equally worried as I am pissed.