I’m not exactly vowing to get vengeance against everyone celebrating their happy holiday butts off but despite the myriad of shiny lights I’ve put up and the carefully thought out gifts I’ve purchased I kind of just want to crawl into bed and stay there until New Year’s.
Some of that is because it’s cold and wintery and my body gets extra hurty when it’s cold and wintery.
Some of that is because my kids are with their dad this year until tomorrow so it won’t feel like a holiday until they get here. However some of it might be the fact that they are older.
No one is excitedly looking for me to put dinosaurs in strange situations throughout the holiday month. No one needed me to take them holiday shopping. There were no long days driving around for the perfect gift, sipping Starbucks and discussing what their Dad would like or what to get their friends.
There are no footy-jammied legs getting too excited and needing to be hauled upstairs for a nap or snuck a stocking stuffer in advance. No gingerbread houses, no Christmas cookies.
There’s only me, putting up the lights, picking out the gifts, wrapping the boxes, sticking them under the tree.
So I feel a little like the Grinch this year. It all seems a bit lackluster.
A long time ago I started this blog with the vague idea that I would become a titan of the blogosphere, writing about being a mom and a lawyer, writing about saving the environment for my children, writing about making my own baby food while crossposting articles from my side gig writing for Attachment Parenting International.
During this time of grandiosity I studied the art of blogging as only a woman who just sat for the Bar Exam after three and a half years of intensive study and then became a stay at home mother in rural New Jersey can, obsessively. I learned you are supposed to choose your niche and write about it passionately, truthfully, and with a raw openness that lets complete strangers into your bleeding inner core in a way you don’t even let your friends in.
That my dears is the way to internet stardom.
Well I don’t have a problem with writing passionately, or really with bleeding my feelings all over the internet. Y’all are really pretty decent and besides, it’s not like I’m going to run into to you at the next cocktail party and have that embarrassing moment when you recognize me. No, my problem was always the niche.
See I, my dear friends, am an interest whore.
I am interested in ALL THE THINGS. I want to read about the things and learn to do the things and write about the things. I want to blog about being a mom and a spoonie and an artist who paints and also makes stuff in 3D and also draws and also makes cards but is also a poet but also writes serious stuff but writes about being sick but can cook and wants to share recipes and loves to take pictures and did you know I make jewelry and am a silversmith and am looking at wood working and oooooh let me share my photography with you and here’s the song I started writing to go with the Kalimba I started playing to help with pain management and do you Yoga and have you tried kayaking and did you know the neuroscience behind exercise and fibromyalgia and the venom in tarantulas in Peru and I have some really good ways my husband and I deal with being chronically ill and I can share those with you and I can talk about parenting teens and….
Yeah. What I am passionate about and interested in is the same thing a fleet of hyperactive squirrels on too much caffeine are interested in and passionate about. Everything.
So after years of trying to write about what fits in the narrowly defined idea of a blog about something other people might like to read I have just given up officially and am just going to put it all out here.
I’m writing down poems and sharing the art. I’m going to talk about the pain and the things that help, the kids and the world and the interesting things I find. I’m going to share and overshare and I am going to enjoy it. Because I finally did find my niche.
It’s me. I’m my niche.
He didn’t notice I couldn’t play.
He didn’t see the effort it took to be there, with him, to be awake and present.
He simply said “I’m sorry you hurt” then went to his bed and brought over the little lap desk he uses for his computer. He set it up on the bed, grabbed his backpack and favorite books and settled in, saying “Let’s do my homework mommy”.
We read first, because he likes to tackle the hard part first. He read Pete the Cat and his Four Groovy Buttons and we giggled. He made up a song for the chorus, and we sang it together. At the end he read, Buttons come and buttons go, but Pete just kept singing his song. Then he turned to me and said “Pete the cat is right mom. Sometime stuff comes and sometimes it goes, but we should keep singing our song.”
After homework we put away the desk and backpack, pencils and books, and he got ready for bed.
He didn’t know how much of my day I spent feeling as though I was letting him down. He doesn’t know how easily he showed me how not to. His desire was to do his homework with me, and he built a way to do it, regardless of what limitations I had.
At bedtime he held my hand in his and I sat with him while he shifted from side to side, his poor little head still uncomfortable from his ear infection. So I took an ultra soft pillow, laid his head on it in my arms and held him until he fell asleep. I held him while he settled in, began to breathe deeply, and drifted off. His hand never let go of mine.
Buttons come and buttons go but my little guy just keeps singing his song.