Tuesday, April 28, 2009

I Just Don't Know What To Do With Myself

I DID IT. I woke up last Sunday in London and decided to quit my job. Yes, that is an insane idea since I have supposedly amazing job in said economy. I know it doesn't seem right, but I will tell you a secret: it's perfectly right for me. Honestly, I knew over the Christmas Break I needed to quit, but it's scary. Just doing it is scary - I won't lie to you. But it's the right thing for me.

I woke up and realized - this is not me.

  • I am not motivated by money, and yet I was spending long hours in an office and long hours on the road working for it. Do you know how burnt out you get by coming home at 8pm every night and barely having time to tuck your kids in bed for the past 3 years?
  • I am not motivated by power, and yet I was spending a lot of time navigating waters that were (in my esteem) ridiculous based on other people's lust pursuits. Do you know how belittling that can be?
  • I am not motivated by fear, and yet I was spending insane amounts of time trying to align with my boss to make sure all the political schemers stayed away. Do you know how many times over the past 2 months someone who was supposed to be part of my team has been in my boss' office trying to take my job?

  1. I am motivated by inspiring people. People that I like and I want to help be successful. This has not been the case.
  2. I am motivated by exciting ideas and execution. While the exciting ideas may have been there; it was full of such disappointment in terms of execution.
  3. I am motivated by flexibility in my workplace. I have limited flexibility. If my office light isn't on at 9am, I get phone calls about it. Seriously? You have time to waste being a hall monitor?
  4. I am motivated by happy workplaces. The people around me are not happy. They are cancerous and have driven my positive, happy spirit into the gutter.
That's pretty much the extent of my motivation I guess. Sure, I want to make a decent living, and I don't mind working my tail off if I'm passionate about it. But my passion died long ago.

I knew I was supposed to do this over Christmas Break, but stupidly, I was too scared. Well that led me down a path I wish I had never gone. If I would have just done it, I could have saved myself from unnecessary hurt by Brit. Although to be fair, he is probably the prime reason I finally realized my work world was so broken. It's all about people using people to get their own agenda met. Prime example.

Why can't work be about a collective group trying to do the right thing? Why can't anything in this life be about a collective group (whether that group is two people or a work force) getting together to do the right thing? Why is it so hard to say that your motivating factor is helping make other people's lives better while you're building something great?

So now I am jobless and I don't care. I have annual passes to the zoo, this is the place park, scera movies and outdoor musicals, and the planetarium. I am going to spend the entire summer with my kids and building back up my happy, positive attitude that I know is hidden in some deep, dark place. I can build up myself and my love of life again. Then, maybe the broken me will be able to piece herself back together enough to grow a heart and find something that I love again - I have lots of ideas brewing.

Wish me luck!!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Friday Mid-Day Musings

I am one week past old. I am sitting in the office staring out the window knowing that I'm going to walk over to the park here in about 15 minutes, and I wish you could come walk in the park with me. The park is beautiful. Regent's Park is breathtaking. I would love to walk through this park every day and chase my beautiful children. As I wander, I'll try to post some pics of it on my facebook so you can pretend like you took the journey with me. I know you secretly want to. It'll be lovely.

We'll pretend together that we're chit-chatting like the proper British people do, and we'll talk about a wide array of subjects. I will only sound slightly nerdy in my references to the Sci-Fi world or long dead authors, and you will sound brilliant with your lyrical quotes and discussions on artificial intelligence. We'll discuss Parliament and Congress, and hypothesize on how much better we could run the world. We'll dawdle a little, and hope the other person will give us the smile that shares a million secrets. We'll have a lemonade from the little stand.

We'll talk about family and how you helped your mom the other day and how I need to help mine more. We'll talk about islands and which ones we want to visit. We'll love the sunshine that plays across our faces, and then we'll turn and say good-bye.

I'll walk off my way, and you'll walk of your way. A little piece of both our souls will be soothed knowing that the other person is still in the world and still has that little bit of magic that warms each others' hearts.

There. That was such a pleasant time we shared together. Let's do it again soon. Sooner than soon really - I miss you.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Easter Beagle

Most days, we have a "schedule". I like to use that term loosely as I'm not perfect at hitting all things on the list.

Today was a "tight ship" day. That's another term that I like to use when referring to the days where I have to remember and do about 50 things in the span on 3 hours. Easter weekend and X decided that he wanted to split it. So, I have this morning -- right.

1. Get kids awake at 8am after staying out til 11pm at friend's last night.
(Kids were up at 8:35am - not a good start)

2. Boil eggs to dye after egg hunt.
(Got that going around 8:30am)

3. Get everyone dressed
(Ava -- done at 8:40am, Liney -- done at 8:47am, TT -- done at 8:49am, Leo -- done at 8:52am after getting kicked in the face at least 5 times)

4. Get everyone in the car
(Roger that -- 8:57am)

5. Drive to the egg hunt
(Parked at 8:59am)

6. Have the egg hunt
(Yeah! We got there right when everyone was lining up at the edge of the field. Oh, but it started to pour on our heads -- whoops! forgot the coats and umbrellas. Back to car at 9:32am)

7. Decorate eggs
(here's where it gets tricky. Never "forget" that you are boiling eggs. it doesn't take an hour to boil them, but if you do take an hour to boil them, you come home to a smoke detector going off and egg spatter in places you didn't even know existed in your kitchen. There was egg across the dining room; it seemed to have no limits. )

8. Go to Thanksgiving Point for Easter Extravaganza.
(umm, i just finished cleaning egg off every nook and cranny of the kitchen and dining room, changing all the kids into new, dry outfits, and fixing everyone's hair. i have 15 minutes to drive to Thanksgiving Point for another egg hunt and bean bag toss.)

7. Achieve ultimate mom status i.e. do all of this AND manage to take a shower some time today.

I don't think I will be able to see another egg for awhile.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Sweet and Adorable You

Oh my Ava.

The first science project request ever came home last month. Ava immediately latched on to a balloon launch she saw on some kid science show.

A: Mom, we absolutely MUST do the balloon launch like on Sid the Science Kid. I know it. It will be amazingly perfect. I will have the best science project -- EVER. (SIDE NOTE: Yes, she really does talk like this)

TT: AG, I don't even know what that science project was so unless you can tell me ...

A: Mom, I have it. Don't worry. You just put the things on the end of the balloons and let them go outside.

After a little more proding, I realized that you tied weights onto the end of helium balloons to see which ones would stay and which ones would still fly away. Ok ... science project idea: CHECK.

We went to the "party place" to purchas 12 balloons.

A: Mom, we HAVE to have the princess balloons. They're the only ones that will make the project really work. If I don't have the princess balloons then it just won't work. A.T. A.L.L.

TT: Umm, ok. I don't think it really matters, sweet pea.

A: Yes Mom. Yes, it absolutely matters (SIDE NOTE: absolutely is one of her favorite words. i think she uses it more than i say 'totally').

SO, we bought 12 princess balloons.

We went to the hardware store, and they only had 10 different sizes of washers ... so we decided to let go 10 of the balloons and keep the other 2. Yeah, should have planned that one better, but oh well. I lost $1.34 on two extra balloons -- I think I can live.

Science project materials: CHECK.

Now, we were set. I tied all the washers on, and in the meantime, I didn't notice Ava going behind me collecting all the balloons.

A: Ok Mom, we're so ready for this. I absolutely know which ones are going to stay and which ones are going to float away.

TT: Well, you have to write it down. This is your prediction, or hypothesis. Do you know what that means?

A: Of course I do. I know what everything means (SIDE NOTE: Yes, she really did say that -- outloud -- and meant it.)

TT: *cough* Ok. So, write down your hypothesis and I'll hold the balloons.

I reached out to get the balloons from her and notice that they are all tangled and wadded into a ball.

********30 minutes of untangling later (said in the frenchy voice of the SpongeBob Squarepants Narrator that I can't get out of my head)**********

Science Project Materials Prepped: CHECK.

TT: Ok let's head outside with one balloon at a time.

A: I'm ready. [She picks the balloon with the lightest washer.]

TT: Let go of it!

A: [completely panicked] Mom, it flew away!!! [She starts screaming] Get it! Get it! [She breaks down crying.] Mom, it's gone. it's gone.

My daughter is now sobbing over a science project. Maybe this wasn't such a good plan.

TT: Honey, remember how they did this on the TV?

A: But why didn't you catch it for me?

TT: Because we were sending birthday balloons to grandpa for his birthday last week.

A: [not a lick of a tear in sight] Awesome. I bet he absolutely loves them.

Science Project Complete: CHECK
Daughter Expectations Realigned: CHECK

**********2 weeks later bringing the science project to school this morning**********

A: Mom, I bet grandpa still thinks his balloons are the best.

And she was absolutely sincere.