“There are too many things that I want to do,” I say to my husband outside the shower he’s taking. He says, “Don’t you mean, need to do?” I think and I say, “No, I do mean ‘want to do’ ”. Sort out my conflicted feelings about my family. Or organize all of my kid’s kindergarten papers before first grade takes off at breakneck speed. Then my husband begins to offer up his suggestions for my time management.
They mean well, those men in our lives. They hear there’s a problem and they want to fix it. I cut him off before he suggests I should be more like his mother and schedule Fridays for grocery shopping. I say, “Why do you suppose my feet hurt all the time?” “I dunno”, he says and throws in the one- upper about his arthritic toes always hurting. I say, “Because I am always on my feet. I never sit down.” I am cleaning the kitchen, exercising, playing soccer with the kid, cleaning, doing laundry, or cooking yet another meal that makes more dishes. He actually wants to start accounting for my hours in a day and if I was making it all up when I said I’m free after one o’clock in the afternoon even though my kid gets one the bus at 8:30 AM. I raised my voice at this point.
His other aching toed foot went in his mouth when he said I might reclaim the “me time” I keep hoping for in 20 years from now. But by then I’ll probably have grandchildren to preoccupy my time. For real? And no fair. Being a caretaker doesn’t mean sacrificing your wanting soul on the pyre of eternity. Additionally, he admitted he thought writers spontaneously write when they feel the urge. I said no, the real writers block out the time to sit their rumps down and act like it’s a real job. Oh, he says.
Needless to say, I was mad at him today. Not snorting and stomping mad, but aggravated. Yet he is only echoing the asininities of generations of ignorants whose blanket statements I may be buying sometimes too. I could feel the lady wanting to protest. We hover, yet, when we take a night off, we get indignant that we’re met with such resistance and incompetence. No fair either.
I want to figure out what my wants are. These are aside and separate from what I have to or need to do. I might include in my list of wants that I want learn to type. Or devoid of the worry of what I’m giving up to do so, I might want to be able to work up to a 5 mile run or spend an afternoon writing or even watching movies. I might want to play in my house all day, decorating to my heart’s content, and then go to get my nails done, grabbing a mochaccino frappe latte from DD, and, on my return home, mess my nails up on a whim by digging in my garden. Impetuously moving plants around until my kid gets off the bus out in front of the house. And then I might want to hear about his day and feed him a snack. And I want peace in knowing that whatever I chose to do today was exactly what I needed to do.