Saturday, April 30, 2011

Dull Women Don't Have Muffintops????

Today at work, I experienced what no woman should ever experience. After helping a customer, she and I had the following exchange:

CustomerWhen is your baby due?

MeBaby?

CustomerYeah, your baby...

Me: Oh, uh - yeah, this is the leftover muffintop from my baby...(I suppose I should've pluralized it - maybe that would have helped my case?)

CustomerOh, how old is your baby?

Me2.

CustomerOh...(cue all of the awkward stories about the customer's experience with her own muffintop still being there after "x" number of years...and the same with her sister, etc.)

So here's the weird part. I didn't feel about it the way I thought I'd feel about it...I thought I was more secure in myself and with my body than I apparently am. I tried to kind of laugh it off at first, but then, as I was called up to the register to help ring up people, I realized that it really, really got to me. It had totally thrown off my "game." I'm normally super upbeat and happy at work - because I really and truly love my job. But I was just.completely.out of it from that point on.  I continued to ring up people, and guess what?  I had the total joy (this is where a "sarcasm" font would be nice) of ringing up the person who made the comment.  

A few transactions later, the line had gone down and I found my managers in the stockroom to ask where they wanted me to go...and it only took a minute of talking about the incident (that I had already told them about) for me to completely lose it.  Like, really crying.  REALLY?!  I'm seriously more secure than that!  But maybe not...anyway, I somehow made it to the breakroom, finished my crying (however, had to retell the story to a couple of co-workers, so that they could understand why I was simply not myself), but then had to wait awhile for my eyes to return to looking normal.  They were completely, totally red.  Luckily, one of the people back there was one of my managers, whom I consider to be one of my best friends at work, and totally easy to talk to.  He did a good job asking me about other things going on, getting me to talk about the kids, Richard, etc.  After a bit, my eyes looked okay enough to return to the floor.  I still couldn't shake how pissed I was at the fact that something so dumb had affected me, but I'm hoping that writing about it will just put it to rest. 

So I don't know.  As Richard told me, "A stupid person said something stupid to me."  He's right.  And that's totally how I THOUGHT I would have reacted.  Weird.  You think you're a strong, confident woman, secure in yourself...until a moron says something to you about the way you look.  Ugh. 

No matter what though, regardless of my conflicted and/or hurt feelings, having my 2, amazing kiddos makes up for any, ol' muffintop!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Accomplishment.

Today, as I steadily (though quickly) knocked out the dishes, I realized something. Something that will, no doubt, be obvious to many, but nonetheless, is one of those things that is only thought about (and sometimes, realized) at random times in a person's life.

So after unloading the dishwasher, I had almost finished loading the dishwasher. (And yes, it was full both times. I'm going to make the claim that we just go through dishes that fast.) I was thinking about how accomplished I felt in that moment, as I was almost done with this task - one that often seems like a huge undertaking - AND, I had also managed to start some laundry. I was satisfied in the fact that my washer was going and my dishwasher was close to being started, too! Side note: all of you SAHMs can relate to the fact that having 2 kiddos in, shall we say, "full-effect" doesn't always afford a Mommy that many consecutive minutes during the day to get that much done, right?

Anyway, I was feeling proud of my (admittedly, small - in the grand scheme of things) accomplishments for the day. Even a little relieved to know that I had gotten these "everyday" tasks done (or at least, put into motion). Oh, it should also be noted that the kids and I made a quick run to Wal-Mart a little before this (and yes, I guess this factored into the feelings I was having as well...my mind must've been forgetting the fact that we were those people in WM, since Everett was very loud about wanting a garbage truck...then a cookie...then to see the cakes...). And then I thought, "REALLY?! You're feeling accomplished by having laundry started and dishes unloaded, loaded, and running?!"

I realized how much the meaning of the word, "accomplishment" had changed over the years for me. I immediately thought of my high school graduation (almost 13 years ago), making my Valedictorian speech, and the sense of "accomplishment" I felt at that time. How hard I had worked to get to that moment of feeling a sense of satisfaction and, yes, relief.





Fast forward about 3.5 years from that moment, to Saturday, November 17, 2001...say, about 9pm that night. I had just finished singing the last song of my Senior Recital. "Ah! Je veux vivre" (Juliet’s Waltz Song) from Romeo and Juliet by Charles Gounod. A beautifully joyful piece with some vocal runs I spent many hours (maybe?) perfecting. I very, very vividly remember going to the reception afterward - in the classroom where I had Music Theory I, II, III, Ear Training I, II, and Diction for Singers. It was now crowded - full of people who had come to listen to me. Just me. Family, friends, a variety of Austin College people - music majors, choir members, friends I had met in classes and on trips, and professors from all areas of learning. I even received flowers the day before from my dear friend (and now Godmother to our children), Tanya, who graduated the year before and wasn't able to make it. People were telling me I sounded amazing. Sure, what else are they going to say? But I was happy with my performance and the fact that my voice teacher was also happy with the performance. Yes, I was feeling pretty accomplished. Definitely relieved. Here I was, in my long, full, black gown, adorned with rhinestones, and I had finished singing about an hours worth of material in front of all of these people. Done.




Now fast forward about 6.5 years, to Saturday, June 7, 2008 (when I was unknowingly 3 weeks pregnant with Everett) - I completed my first 5K race with my good friend Erin! Lots of preparation and training beforehand, waking up early the morning of the event, and then a surge of adrenaline going through my body, making the run seem almost effortless, as I enjoyed the thrill of being a part of such a huge group of people. I loved running past Richard and Jillian, as they cheered me on, and I was proud of the fact that my little girl was there to celebrate a new accomplishment for Mommy!




Now. Back to the moment that kick-started these memories. Dishes and laundry. No, I'm not forgetting the other obvious accomplishments I've had since my college days (married the most wonderful man and had two, incredible children) - they're just kind of in a different "accomplishments" category. How in the world are dishes and laundry related to these other accomplishments?! I'm not really sure that they are. But what I realized was that, like so many other things in one's life, the term, "accomplishment" had metamorphosized greatly. Suddenly, it wasn't the "event" it used to be. It wasn't something that had been scheduled to make record of a planned, anticipated accomplishment that had occurred only after many, many hours of hard work and preparation. Rather, "accomplishment" at this time in my life, seems to mean something that, by external standards and/or opinions is relatively small.

Perhaps. But now that I've got the dishes and laundry done, I can move on to "bigger" things. ;)

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