April in Glenwood: Enjoying the quiet before the storm
I have absolutely nothing to do this weekend.
And I’m over the moon about it.
Figuratively, “absolutely nothing” is a stretch, being that there are eight-month-old and six-year-old boys in the house to lovingly care for and plenty of laundry to wash. I can always make a month’s supply of baby food, or clean out some of my boxes leftover from my move from Colorado in the garage. Some spring cleaning would be nice, too.
As far as my social calendar goes, though, I’m completely open.
The old me, who planned out weekends meticulously like a socialite fills her engagement calendar, would likely laugh at the prospect of having nothing to do. Just a few short years ago, I’d have something going on all weekend, sometimes two events to attend in one night.
I had a lot of energy in my single days.
I was all about the people and the energy of being out and about, especially those fun days back in Glenwood before my friends and I started scattering across country, moving to locations spread out from Bend, Oregon to Miami, Fla.
I think back to those early years of 2000 as if time stood still for our then-single group of friends. None of us were married, and we definitely didn’t have kids to care for, so we pretty much made decisions on the fly.
We decided to do Shoshone Bombs (rafting lingo for quick laps through the high-water stretch of the Colorado through Glenwood Canyon) on the whim. Impromptu games of kickball at Two Rivers Park or day drinking pints of IPAs at the Glenwood Brewpub didn’t require much forethought.
As the saying goes, we lived by the seat of our pants.
These days my pants are stretchy at the waist — give me a few more weeks to really fit into my old jeans, I promise. That’s a promise to myself, by the way. Although society has a good way of making women feel as if they should be back to their pre-pregnancy weight in like three months. Some new moms even post selfies of their quick baby-weight loss prowess after six or eight weeks. I don’t get the pressure, and I’m definitely moving at my own speed.
There’s a reason my friends Kat and Ananda call me Pokie.
I’m also probably in the mom minority when I admit to having nothing to do this weekend.
Every time I log in to Facebook or check Pinterest, it seems the most enviable of mothers are going for the who-can-be-the-busiest-family or most-creative-mom-of-the-year award. And mom blogs, they can be the most frustrating places to find information because there’s shaming going on about everything from breast-feeding duration to how to make the best gluten-free smash cake ever for a one-year-old’s birthday party.
Basically there’s a lot of pressure out there.
I tend to brush it off, though. Because I like things simple. If I can spend a weekend at home with my little one singing Motown songs from the Baby Einstein channel on Pandora, I’m definitely going to do that. I’ll do about anything to avoid crowds at shopping malls, especially with a baby in tow.
Last year, Amazon saved me from unneeded holiday stress with online Christmas shopping. I’ll make homemade baby food and buy diapers and nursery water in bulk for less trips to the store, if possible. I’m not exactly a hermit.
But I do enjoy a chill home life these days.
That would probably blow the mind of the early 2000s me, who was more about having fun and less about nesting. I figure I should enjoy the down-time while I can. Before I know it, the boys will be totally immersed in homework and after-school activities, which now-a-days fill parents’ entire weekends with practices and competitions. We will be busy as beavers in the No Name eddy — life’s new norm — before I can say Shoshone.
I hope to never run myself ragged as a mom, but that may be inevitable considering how many activities and sports kids sign up for these days. If I do find myself in a situation where I know things are becoming too hectic, I’m going to stop and think about life in the mountains. And how chilling out beats freaking out any day.
Funny thing is, I used to say I was crazy busy, like I was proud about it.
Now I’m just crazy at peace.
April E. Clark wishes her baby Will a happy eight-month birthday today. Time sure does fly. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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