Work-Life Balance

If nothing else, my writing has introduced the opportunity for family comedy around the dinner table … at my expense.  My husband and three kids are true Family Guy fanatics (don’t judge) (On second thought – please DO judge).  Have you seen that episode where Stewie Griffin (the baby) teases Brian (the dog) about his novel?  Well lately the same scene plays itself out in similar fashion in our household:

Mom:  Did you all get your homework done today?

DS1:   How you, uh, how you comin’ on that novel you’re working on? Huh? Been on that computer for hours, huh? Anything yet?

Mom:  Pass the salt and pepper, please.

DD:  Yeah, really mom?.  Got a, got a nice little story you’re working on there? That big novel you’ve been working on for three years? Huh?

Mom:  Did anyone take out the garbage today?

DS2:  Got a, got a compelling protagonist? Yeah? Huh? Got a twist brewing there? Huh? Huh?

Mom:   Anyone feed the dogs, yet?

DH:  Nice little plot coming together?  Compelling story line?  Boy meets girl. Boy falls in love with girl? Boy loses girl?  Then what? Yeah? Yeah? No?

Mom:  I don’t suppose the Brontës endured this at dinner.

All:   Who??

I read a posting over at WriteOnEdge which has inspired me to reflect upon one of my failures of 2011 (just one, mind you; I know you don’t have all day): 

In a flash of enthusiastic short-sightedness, I registered for NaNoWriMo 2011.  National Novel Writing Month – or NaNoWriMo as it is more commonly referred to – came in like a gush and went out with a burp.  For those not in NaNoWriMo-know, it’s an international online creative writing event which carries the tag line “Thirty days and thirty nights of literary abandon”.  The purpose is to write a 50,000 word fiction novel in the thirty days during the month of November (and not the same word 50,000 times, either).  My project was to be a work initiated on November 1st, not something previously published or previously initiated like a work-in-progress, and completed by midnight November 30th.  Quantity is stressed over quality – that’s what the editing process is for, right?  I would be declared a winner by verifying my word count on the national site and achieving the 50,000 word mark.  Lest you doubt NaNoWriMo’s popularily, the project started with about 28 participants in 1999 and grew to over 200,000 in 2010.   And while a whole lot of crap gets written in those 30 days by a lot of people, one of my favourite books, Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen, was initially written as a NaNoWriMo project.  So it’s impact as a useful project can also not be underestimated.  Let’s just call it a anti-procrastination project, and the intent is to write daily without inhibition, self-doubt or self-criticism. 

Well, in my case, I was unable to abandon everything else in my life in order to write without abandon.

I dutifully created my profile page on the organizations main website and quickly jotted down my novel’s plot:

Anna learns that a sapphire and diamond brooch gifted to her by her late-great-grandmother was actually once owned by a young Jewish girl from Poland. She has also learned from an aging great-aunt suffering from Alzheimer’s that the brooch may have left this girl’s hands in an unsuccessful attempt to bribe an S.S. official from deporting her family. Follow Anna as she traces the ownership of this brooch backward through time on an emotional and physical journey, during which many skeletons come to life.

I know. I suppose it sounds an awful lot like Sarah’s Key and half a dozen other Holocaust story plots these days, but I have had this idea in my head for about 5 years.  Furthermore, I was bequeathed a lovely old-fashioned but feminine brooch from my maternal great-grandmother with my paternal great-grandfather’s initials on it… which is really weird when you think about it. Anyway, I was just fantasizing about it one day and came up with this idea for a historical fiction.

I didn’t get too far with Anna’s story during NaNoWriMo.  Anna got discouraged in her search for the truth, about the same time I got discouraged with my lack of a chapter outline,my  lack of real character development, my lack of other compelling characters , and my zero research.  I naively assumed not only would the words just “flow”, but that the opportunity to let them just flow without abandon, would just “happen”.  I quickly realized that if I was to continue writing an average of 1,667 words a day (a little more than 3 single-spaced typewritten pages) for 30 days, my Anna story was indeed going to turn out complete garbage.  Lesson learned, and thankfully only after about 8,000 crappy words.

The truth is, it’s way more fun to talk about writing a book than to actually write a book – and infinitely easier.  It’s also way more fun to be the brunt of family jokes about writing a book than actually writing a book – this part’s not so easy.

Nevertheless, this now is an official work-in-progress (baby steps, right?). As I initiate another writing project near and dear to my heart in preparation for a writer’s conference in April, I take to heart what I have learned from my failed deferred NaNoWriMo experience and my renewed commitment to writing:

Step one: Secure butt to chair.

Step two: Write.

Step three: Repeat Steps One and Two.

 

The process of writing is not that simple, and yet … it is

So what with me and New Year’s Resolutions, anyway?

 

 

 

res·o·lu·tion [rez-uhloo-shuh n]

noun

  1. a formal expression of opinion or intention made, usually after voting, by a formal organization, a legislature, a club, or other group. Compare concurrent resolution, joint resolution.
  2. a resolve or determination: to make a firm resolution to do something.
  3. the act of resolving or determining upon an action or course of action, method, procedure, etc.
  4. the mental state or quality of being resolved or resolute; firmness of purpose.
  5. the act or process of resolving or separating into constituent or elementary parts.

Sounds painful.  Note the repeated use in the above Dictionary.com definition of some form of the word “resolve”. That’s not actually very helpful.

re·solve [ri-zolv]

verb, -solved, -solv·ing, noun

  1. to come to a definite or earnest decision about; determine (to do something): I have resolved that I shall live to the full.
  2. to separate into constituent or elementary parts; break up; cause or disintegrate (usually followed by into ).
  3. to reduce or convert by, or as by, breaking up or disintegration (usually followed by to  or into ).
  4. to convert or transform by any process (often used reflexively).
  5. to reduce by mental analysis (often followed by into ).

Ah! Now we are getting somewhere!

Those who know me even just a little, can appreciate my determination:  once I’ve resolved to do something, I’ll darn well git ‘her dun.  Think, ‘want something done, ask a busy person” and that’s me.  

I have noticed this year, however, that the New Year’s Resolution scales have tipped off balance (and yeah, not just metaphorically) because the excitement and energy put forth into setting new goals, no longer compensates for that inner regret and remorse in realizing, yet again, they will remain unaccomplished.

I am finding the predictable torrent of everyone’s lists of goals and resolutions this year are just a little more intimidating than they are inspiring.  My out-loud voice is saying, “That’s an amazing Resolution!  That’s great!  You go!” and I really mean it, but the voice in my head is actually wondering, “Really?  How are you going to accomplish all that??”  I continue to be energized by everyone’s passion in their New Year Resolution-making mirth but I seem to be a little more mindful of the obligation that comes with the next step… uh … carrying them out.

See, my plate was already pretty full up in 2011, so how in the name of New Year’s Resolutions and God Almighty do I think I can accomplish more in 2012?  Especially when 2012, and the world as we know it, is going to end on December 21?  Not that those 10 extra days would help, but I think it’s best if I just sit this one out, stand on the sidelines and cheer on everyone else’s fist-slammin’, list-makin’, weight-liftin’ ,picky-swearin’, pour-the-bottle-down-the-drain,goal-making Resolution Fever. Wait a minute, you’re not really going to pour those leftovers down the drain, are you?

Yes, this might make me seem a tad pessimistic, like my glass is not half full but half empty (come to think of it…), and maybe even a touch lazy, but let’s instead call it my age of acceptance.

I lead a very busy life, and it’s pretty darn fulfilling.  If I make room for even just one New Year’s Resolution, something’s got to go to make room for its achievement.  And I’m not sure what that would be, or if I’m willing to do less of it, or not be part of it at all. 

I read somewhere that people who break resolutions are weak; those who make resolutions are fools.  Thus, my pledge for 2012 is to stop being a foolish weakling!  There are things that have to get done, and I will get them done … there are things I want to get done, and I will get most of them done.  My plan is to enjoy the road I’m on…wherever it goes…

There! I guess I did make a New Year’s Resolution after all:   More of the same, please!

 So, cheers to all you ardent Resolutionists, and cheers to the rest of us too….

Is it ok to wear pyjamas to the grocery store? I really want to know.  Will ‘sleepwear as street wear’ become the next fashion passion for all as Lorraine Duffy Merkl of East Side Our Town writes (and I mean not just for teenagers since mine have also decided pj bottoms are de rigeur on the teenage catwalk)?

***

It was the Tuesday after a long weekend.  We’d just returned from a phenomenal long weekend away with my extended family.  We ate, we drank, we peed our pants laughing, we pulled a few muscles and strained a few ligaments scaling down mountains, and all the while my mom systematically wrote each one of us out of her last will and testament… you know … typical family weekend.

The Tuesday after a long weekend-back-to-work/back-to-school is always painful.  I was tired.  I was cranky.  The cupboard was bare.  One of the dogs had fertilized the white living room carpet – probably the result of his feral weekend at the frat house-for-hounds (aka kennel).  Though I was the last one home, the contributions were still there – just the pungent aroma I needed after a long-Tuesday- at-work- after-a-long-weekend.  Everyone, including the dogs, was complaining about homework and hunger.  “There’s plenty of food in the house,” I shot back “just no more junk food. See?”  I yanked open the frig door.  They were right.  There was no food in the house.  The frig was empty.  I gave them all a granola bar and told them to hang on … help was on its way.

“Feed the dogs!” I yell, as I run up to change.  “Fed them yesterday!” was the reply I got.  “Funny, I fed you yesterday too,” I reminded her.   “And see?  You’re hungry again!”  Eyes rolling, she fed the dogs.

As I changed out of my work clothes, making my mental grocery list, I wondered – as I peered over the mountain of dirty laundry – could I get away with going to the grocery store in my pyjamas?  IT WOULD BE SO EASY!  It was the only thing I really wanted to wear!  I thought of all the summertime boaters I’d seen all summer traipsing through the store in their bathing suits.  To a few of those, I should have offered my bathrobe.  It would have been a sympathetic gesture for all humanity.  They wouldn’t care.  Or all the trades people I’d seen quickly running in after work in their overall and muddy work boots.  They wouldn’t notice.  I used to take the boys to the bus stop in my pyjamas when my daughter was still an infant.  I was wearing snow pants and a jacket, mind you, but the bus driver didn’t seem care. 

I ask you, who would care?  My friends would not care.  No, it’s not likely they’d drop a jar of pickles at the sight of me in the middle of aisle four.  Heck, they’d take one look at me, tuck a carton of dulce de leche Haagen Dazs in my cart and soothe me:  “There, there, dear.  Don’t worry.  It’s a short week!  Friday is on its way.”  How noticeable would little ol’ me be in my flannel snowflake ensemble with matching slippers?  So adorable. So cozy. So tempting.

So wrong.

THAT would be the day I would run into any of my kids’ teachers, and CAS would be on my doorstep the next day.

That would be the day I would run into any one of my husband’s clients, and we’d soon be eating canned ham.

THAT would be the day I run into one of my colleagues, and no one would make eye contact with me the rest of the week.

THAT would be the day, I run into any of my boys’ friends, and they would be the laughing stock of the cafeteria (though I can take comfort in knowing my daughter’s friends would simply assume that grown-ups have pyjama day at work too).

No, that did it.  I pulled on my jeans and a turtleneck sweater and marched off to the grocery store in some manner of civility and respect.

 Someone else will have to set the next food-shopping fashion fervour!

***

Author’s note:  Just for the record, I am NOT actually pictured anywhere here!

In a parallel universe, I am a witty humour writer that spends her day penning clever repertoire making up my own deadlines and taking commercial breaks from my scintillating radio talk show about hockey moms.  Back on earth, however, the day-to-day me has a real day job.  And the day-to-day me has spent the past three days at health and safety certification training (it’s true:  I need to work on my rock-paper-scissors technique).  Three days… 24 hours … I’ll just never get those back.  Three days of the Occupational Health and Safety Act, important regulations for the service sector, duties and responsibilities of employers, supervisors, workers and certified members of the joint health and safety committee. 

Note the last phrase:  certified members of the joint health and safety committee.  That would be me.  First, however, I must successfully pass the test which was administered at the end of the course.  Does anyone else still stress over the word “test” years after graduation?  I did a little gulp when I discovered that our class was being administered four different tests.  Yeah, I know!  I could not even count on my colleague – she was given a different test!  My goodness, these government folk are clever.  Anyway, no need to angst, the test was a breeze, a cinch, un morceau de gateaux.  Allow me to provide you with an abbreviated version of the test just in case you’re ever called upon to do health and safety certification training.  I’m sure you’ll agree how entirely accurate were my answers when asked to define the following terms:

Certified: Okay, you mean any “mom”, right?

 Competent person:  A competent person is someone who can feed the dogs, order pizza, and pour my wine, – at the same time.  Come to think of it, this goes beyond competence.  This would be true talent.

 Internal Responsibility System – Is this the principle behind my friend flushing my car keys down the toilet the minute I arrive at her house?  Or is this the one where my husband asks me if I’m coming home or planning on sleeping under that table all night?

 Dangerous circumstance:  A dangerous circumstance refers to a situation in which I wake up and find out we’re all out of coffee.  Not good.  Very dangerous circumstance.

 Confined space: A confined space is a fully or partially enclosed space not designed or constructed for human occupancy – aka what passes for the bedroom my two teenage sons share.

 Exposure Limit – When my eyes start to water when exposed to my boys’ “confined space”, I know I have reached my maximum Exposure Limit.  The current Time Weighted Average limit (or TWA) is 0.05 seconds.  Should Expsoure Limit be reached, please refer procedures outlines in Regulation 632, section 17 regarding Preventing Unauthorized Entry.

 WHMIS – Refers to current available wine supply (Women’s HomeMade Intoxicating System)

 There you have it!  Pretty impressive, don’t ya think?  I sure hope I passed!.  My employer will be so proud.  

I am sooooooooo going to get Employee of the Month…

in·dulge

[in-duhlj] verb, -dulged, -dulg·ing.

–verb (used without object)

1.  to yield to an inclination or desire; allow oneself to follow one’s will (often followed by in ): Dessert came, but I didn’t indulge[oh – but I did!]. They indulged in unbelievable shopping sprees [or rather spa treatments].

–verb (used with object)

2.  to yield to, satisfy, or gratify (desires, feelings, etc.): to indulge one’s appetite for sweets [‘ahem, or the spa’].

3.  to yield to the wishes or whims of; be lenient or permissive with: to indulge a child [which we did!].

4.  to allow (oneself) to follow one’s will (usually followed by in ): to indulge oneself in reckless spending [or reckless eating].

It had taken weeks of planning and considerable preparation, but, with the help of www.meetingwizard.com, several trips to LCBO and the grocery store and more than one phone call to the Deerhurst Resort spa, the day had arrived.   My bag was packed, the cooler was filled, plenty of food in the house for the family I was abandoning, and as much laundry had been done as possible before my dryer kicked the bucket for good.  I went away for the weekend.   I went away for the weekend without my kids and without my husband.  Just a weekend mind you … less than 48 hours actually.  But I went away for the weekend.  My companions were six other women whom I’ve known my entire life (sister and cousins) to a some I’ve now known the better part of twenty years (my sisters-in-law), and the most adorable 8-month old (my newest cousin) that  I had the delight to meet for the first time.  

Like many of my soul sisters in attendance this weekend, sometimes I cram so much into one day that I feel like a vicious hurricane cutting a swath of achievement and productivity.  Then other days, that same schedule can leave me feeling besieged and exhausted.  When the dust settles, I wonder if perhaps there lie the tender balance of marriage, motherhood and mid-life.  Sigh.  It’s probably much more simple:  some days are just better than others.  I read somewhere it takes both rain and sun to make a rainbow – such is the metaphor of Life! 

After a full day at work, the four-hour drive on a two-lane highway was exhausting and I was hyper-vigilante about moose throughAlgonquinParkright at dusk.  As I walked through the door of the condo, feeling a little less than refreshed, I was quickly ambushed by warm hugs, a cool glass of Pinot Gri and the aromatic smell of a warm meal certain to be seasoned with laughter.  Rain + Sun = Rainbow.  It was a great start to the weekend.

Upon waking up Saturday morning, It was immediately clear that the weather would not cooperate.  Mother Nature clearly has something a girls’ weekend.   While the rain made the run my sister and I undertook as part of our training for the Ottawa Half less than pleasurable, our wet misery evaporated quickly in our hedonistic spa treatments.   An afternoon spent in pure indulgence (see definition above).  Rain + Sun= Rainbow.  

By the time, I returned uber-relaxed, happy hour was underway and the scent of simmering dinner wafted through the condo!  What is better than dinner after a glorious afternoon at the spa?  Dinner that someone else made!  The baby now asleep, we seven women sat around the dinner table for the better part of four hours celebrating (and occasionally griping about) our health, our history, our husbands, our children, our careers, our homes, our loved ones, our futures, our summers, our travels, our weekends, our hobbies, ourselves.  I felt privileged to be part of this auspicious group of seven who had gathered yet again to celebrate ourselves.

The feeling of pure contentment and relaxation lingered upon my return… dinner was an easy spaghetti and salad, the grocery store had closed, and best of all – I remembered the dryer was broken.  No laundry today!  Rain + Sun = Rainbow. 

See if you can pick out the new me …[heh, heh … not]

Everyone needs a little more yoga in their life.  I need more yoga in my life. I have been practicing yoga for almost 10 years now and I like all things yoga. Well, almost all things. I love the comfortable clothes. I love the dimmed, romantic lights in the studio. I like the calm, peaceful music and the tranquility that it induces. I love lying down and stretching tense muscles.  I love the lavender eye pillows my new yoga studio has for corpse pose.  I really love how calm I feel immediately after class.  Usually lasts about 10 minutes…

After 10 years, though, I still get frustrated though sometimes. There are a lot of rules in yoga.  Like breathing.  I forget that sometimes.  Then there are the poses that make me want to laugh out loud, “Are you kidding me?! Who the hell can do that?!” only to look around and realize that just about everyone can do that.  My balance sucks.  While I do appreciate the calming voice of the teacher, I have to ask, “Does she always talk like that or just during class?” 

You know though, yoga is a little like school.  You have to get through the class to go out for recess.  Same goes with Savasana.  You have to get through yoga to get to savasana!  Yoga nirvana! 

So I will keep up with my practice just so I can keep going out for recess!  Patience, young butterfly

Shanti. Shanti. Shanti

Career advice guru, Barbara Moses, recently wrote about work-life balance.  I have struggled with this myth since becoming a mother but she is now advising me to forget about it and get on with life.  She got my attention and her advice resonated well.

Since motherhood I have occasionally second guessed the choices I have made between my career and my family life.  No matter which side of the fence I was on, I was always curious about what the women were doing on the other side!  I know I am one of the fortunate ones as we had the financial means to allow me to make choices, though that didn’t necessarily make the choices any easier.

Basically the article begs people to stop whining about work-life balance and get on with what’s important in their life.  That is my own life.  It’s true.  No institution can adjudicate and promote my own work-life balance.  Furthermore, it’s not a one size fits all state of being.  I think all  too often people are looking to our governments and our employers to make these decisions for us in their policy making, but it really does come down to doing what is best suited for me and my goals in life.  

Here are her suggestions:

  1. Forget about the pursuit of balance – things that engage me make me feel good about me and my life
  2. Identify what’s important – if I imagine myself 10 years down the road, which decisions will I be proud of and which will I regret?
  3. Know where your presence is most valued – it is a fact of the corporate life that if I put my family first I just may not get that promotion.  Will I really regret it?
  4. Be engaged, wherever you are – I set boundaries for work and focus on personal things at home
  5. Stop playing the guilt game – if I really feel guilty, I should change my behaviour
  6. Think life chapters – I can never have it all, ALL the time
  7. Forget easy solutions – or “Mother said there’d be days like this …”
  8. Be steadfast – I won’t second guess myself or allow others to make me feel guilty
  9. Accept less than perfect – as a parent, partner, boss, employee, and friend.

Sounds an awful lot like a list of New Year’s resolutions!  Thinking back to what I wrote I was most thankful for in 2010, family, health and prosperity http://dustbunnychronicles.wordpress.com/2011/01/01/baracka/, I guess I already did apply Barbara Moses suggestions above.  That’s what made it such an awesome year! 

Life with kids is crazy.  Life without kids is crazy.  What are you going to do about it?  I don’t think I need to chase that work-life balance mirage any longer. 

http://m.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/managing/barbara-moses/the-myth-of-work-life-balance/article1860633/?service=mobile

If you leave the workforce, you generally don’t get paid.  It’s that simple.  Yes, there are Employment Insurance, pension and employer supplemental benefits and investment income that might provide some income protection until you return, but generally speaking, you’re on your own.  There are also some women who don’t return to the workforce, opting to stay at home to raise the new family.

 It strikes me odd that so much research is devoted to why women’s pay lags her male colleague’s.  I don’t think there much mystery.  TD Bank has come out with this recent report called Career Interrupted:  The Economic Impact of Motherhood.  Rather than take the normal position and research why women are paid less then men, it starts a new generation of research (mostly because everyone already knows that women are paid less than men so why bother figuring it out anymore) that delves into some interesting studies about how the length of absence versus the frequency of absences from the workforce play a role and which is actually worse (women are better off with a longer absence than a more frequent absence [read: few kids] and if they go back to the same employer they tend not to be penalized as much [read:  you have a government job]).  The report also suggests that the female working group, ages 25-44 (hey, wait a minute… does that mean most women retire at 44?) is not increasing much in population.  That spells trouble for the diversity initiative trying to get more women into the boardroom and on to Boards. 

I know why my income is not at par with my husband’s.  I also know why my income is not at par with my female friends who took no time from the workforce other than legislated maternity and parental leave.  I just simply failed to keep up because I was busy with other things (read:  3 kids and more volunteer work).

Here’s the study I want to see:  show me what a mother’s absence from the workforce does to favour her partner’s career.  I can bet you my monthly RESP contribution that my absence from the workforce facilitated my husband’s career and ultimately our net worth.  My absence from the workforce allowed him to totally focus on his career and its progression and , in the end, I bet our net worth is better off than had I not left the workforce.  I’m reasonably certain that had I stayed as focused and ambitious as I was before children, his career might not have taken as steep a climb as it did. 

I guess some women would take offence to this correlation as it smacks of anti-women’s rights or diminishes the father’s role as a caregiver.  Maybe.  Or just maybe in the end, we both got what we wanted.  That’s ok, isn’t it?

http://www.td.com/economics/special/bc1010_career_interrupted.pdf

If there is domestic nirvana, Good Cleaning Lady she be.  I’ve been without this heavenly bliss since July (that’s right – JULY – don’t come visit!).  My husband and I have employed a cleaning lady since very early in our marriage.  For the first few years of our wedded life together, housecleaning was the only thing we fought about (I’ve matured now to the point that I have since found other mundane things to fight about).   I seemed to be doing it every weekend.  In 1991, $40 got your entire apartment cleaned, plus whatever laundry and ironing was lying around.  Of course the apartment was about 400 square feet; laundry was limited because we had all this disposable income for dry-cleaning and who, quite frankly, who irons anymore?  Fast forward almost 20 years now and our cleaning lady of 5 years leaves a voicemail saying she’s off to Germany for the month of August and will call me upon her return.  No sweat – we’re at the cottage for 2 weeks…how bad can things get?  Except…she does not call back at the end of August!  I let things go a couple more weeks until I am wading through dust bunnies and dog hair a foot deep.  I misplaced my daughter for a whole hour.  Finally found her after an anxious game of indoor Marco Polo!  . 

Our cleaning ladies have been the glue that keeps our marriage together – or just my uncomplicated version of the Other Woman I’m not sure.   It is entirely possible that this woman, after 5 years of promoting peace and non-violence in our matrimony has divorced us.

So since the end of August I’ve been the domestic Goddess around here.  Though after 4 hours of sweat labour, I feel more like a cross between the Tasmanian Devil and Pigpen.  I’m truly enlightened too:  a good cleaning lady may be hard to find but well worth the effort and way cheaper than marriage counseling.

Help Wanted!

Ego:              Hey wake up sleepyhead!  It’s time to get ready for work.

Id:                 Huh (yawning)? Ready for what?

Ego:              Work. W-o-r-k.  It’s generally how you spend most of your time when you’re not on vacation like you’ve been for the past two weeks. 

Id:                 But it’s dark out.  I can’t hear the loons.

Ego:              There are no loons here.  It’s dark because it’s 5:30am and you promised to get back into your work out routine when you got back from the cottage.

Id:                 I find it exceedingly hard to believe that I promised anything that required me to be up at 5:30am. 

Ego:              That’s a big word for you so early on your first day back at work

Id                  Even if I did promise such a thing, I changed my mind.  (Rolling over) I just want to go back to bed.

Ego:              OK skip the workout for today; I know it’s hard to get back into the routine.  You do, however, have to now jump in the shower.

Id:                 The what?

Ego:              The shower!

Id:                 I’m just going to take a morning dip in the lake.

Ego:              There is no lake here and no loons; c’mon hop to it.

Id:                 (Groan) Okay.  Y’know this hot shower isn’t too bad.  Actually feels pretty good!

Ego:              Good.  I think you’ve been in there long enough.  Now, put this on.

Id:                 What is THAT?

Ego:              It’s called a bra.  Women generally wear them under their clothes – especially in a professional business setting.  Sound familiar?

Id:                 Oh yeah.  I forgot.  Nasty thing. Whoa, there! Wait a minute.  What are THOSE?

Ego:              Pantyhose.  Put them on.  C’mon now, you are really dilly dallying.

Id:                 I am NOT putting on those hose thingies.  Uh-uh. No way!  Bad enough I have to wear that bra thingy after wearing a bathing suit all day for the past two weeks.

Ego:              Okay, okay, never mind.  It is still August after all.  We’ll ease into these later.  Remember though, come Labour Day, they are MANDATORY.

Id:                 I knew I could talk some sense into you.  Okay no what?  Oh yes; how nice!  I see you’ve brought me my book.  Is it coffee time on the dock?

Ego:              Sorry.  This is your DayTimer.  Better check it and make sure your iPhone is synced with your Outlook Calendar and cross-referenced with your DayTimer.

Id:                 Stop it.  You’re starting to freak me out.

Ego:              Good thing Super Ego is not hear today.  Here.  Put your coffee in here.

Id:                 Too shiny!  Turn it off!  What is that?

Ego:              It’s a travel mug, you idiot.  For your coffee.  Helps you make it to work on time

Super Ego:    Although the way you’re acting right now, I’m not sure if we’ll get out of the garage.

Id:                 Who said that?! Who was that?!

Ego:              Shhhhh, Super Ego!  Id is not ready for you yet.

Super Ego:    Okay, okay, but she’s really getting on my nerves!  It’s a wonder she got a job in the first place

Id:                 Waaaaaahhhhhh!

Ego:              Super Ego!  Not today!  Come back some other time! Like, maybe September

Id:                 Can I go back to bed now?

Ego:              No, we’ve made it the car.  Here you go; here are the keys.

Id:                 What do I do with them?

 Pause

 Id:                 Ego? Are you there? Don’t leave me!  I’m very fragile today.

 Pause

 Id                  Ego?

 Pause

Ego:              I think you need a mental health day.

 Id:                 I am so glad I let you hang around.

About Astra
Ottawa mom of 3 poking fun at myself, motherhood, and minor hockey! I am steering through life dodging stinky hockey gear and empty wine bottles.
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