Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Does Life Come with a Remote and Does it Have a Pause Button?

I struggle with time management these days. I work full time (senior management, read more than 50 hours per week, minimum). I commute 1-2 hours per day to do this work. I raise two children. I have no spouse right now to help with shopping and homework and changing air filters and taillights in cars and parent teacher conferences.

There is no chicken or fruit or toaster waffles or dishwasher soap in the house right now.

The last "date" I had was dinner. One month ago. With my au pair.

Poker? I haven't played poker in 4 days.

I should not complain. With two incomes, I pay someone to clean my toilets. I pay someone to tend my yard. I pay a young woman to live in my house so that my 10-year old does not come home to an empty house and so that my two children have someone to eat breakfast with so that I can start my wicked commute. I pay a preschool to help my youngest son learn to read and write.

Today, while I dried my hair, my littlest man came into my bedroom with pen and paper. "How do you spell 'house'?" he asked. As he lay on his stomach on the floor in his SpongeBob briefs, I stopped to help him remember what an "H" looks like, congratulated him on how nice his "S" looked, and helped him spell new words. Then I realized I was going to be late for a 9:00 meeting and started rushing around. And today was the deadline for benefits registration. And I had to have the audit committee materials ready by noon.

I'd like to take more time to help him explore this new world of writing, go to a movie by myself, shop for apples and dishsoap and a new book without it being a sprint. I'd like to have 30 minutes to sit with my oldest son and have him tell me about the latest Spiderwick book he just read. I'd like to skip the audit committee meeting to take time to help my new staff understand what she's doing so she doesn't feel so lost when I'm busy. I'd like to take time to write my awesome administrative assistant a performance review, then take her to lunch to talk about it. I'd like to call my friends and relatives from the comfort of my couch to catch up, rather than on my hands-free device while I drive home.

If one of you finds the remote, can you just hit the "pause" button for me?

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

6 comments:

Instant Tragedy: Just Add Water said...

I'd hit the Easy button, but I'd be afraid of getting shot from Iraq!

:-)

BamBam said...

Time is what you make it. We're all busy. Seriously busy being, working, doing and paying. But not living.

I hope you keep this list of things to do. Make one happen. I suggest the review of the Spiderwick book. Then take a good hard look at that list. Pick the lunch or ?, and make the next one happen.

Make one of these things happen once in a while no matter what. The rest will come as you learn to,
"love it like you'll never see it again."

As for the date? That time will come. Hopefully, sooner than later. The Doc will come home safe and the date will be incredible for both of you. I'm positive he could use it too.

You wouldn't have written this list of items if they didn't really mean something to you. Only you can hit pause and schedule each of them. It isn't easy! But easy is letting real life slip away and dissapear, only to be gone forever.

I say this as a friend. Small times forced upon yourself, can be the best times of all.

In all sincerity, and only a bit of sarcastic humour, busy is for schmucks. Make time to live.

Respectfully replied....

Bam-Bam

Schaubs said...

I think there is an Adam Sandler movie about a "life remote"... after seeing it, you might want to change your mind...

Hang in there.

BamBam said...

I uuhhhh... posted in your honour.

Instead of feeling down... laugh a little. That's what we're here for, right?

Ton's 'O' love to the four of you!

Respectfully submitted...

And I hope you know I mean that!

Drizztdj said...

I get up around 4:30am, and sometime around 7:30-8pm I might actually get to see my house.

Which is why online poker is supposed to be my stress relief... but isn't very fun when variance kicks your ass.

Student of Life said...

Totally feel you here. When I was a mom working in the crazy TV news business, I could never find the balance. I always felt behind, like a half-ass mom, half-ass wife, and half-ass employee. I admire people like you who seem to make it all work 98 percent of the time. Don't let the 2 percent drag you down.