Big trips and school

Rook is on his way to Burning Man in his car alone full of days of preparation, reading, shopping, packing, and practicing the setting up of tents. I forgot to give him safety pins and a handkerchief for the back of his hat! And… also his hat is rather amazing; a bright blue straw cowboy hat with a chin strap. Even when hats are big enough to go on his head, they look weirdly out of proportion and you realize that he has a really enormous head and that something is out of whack. I think it is that the hat inside brims are big enough, but the hat itself has not been scaled correctly to be bigger on the outside. Someday I would like to find him a properly fitting hat. Anyway, I’m vicariously excited for him to have adventures at Burning Man, and a little mother-hennish feeling about him getting sunburned, chafed, sick, being at all miserable or uncomfortable, or taking too many drugs and not having emotional or practical backup; but actually he has a camp of people we’ve known for ages and also he can take great care of himself. A week ago I was also a bit worried he was not prepared, and maybe I would be semi-forced into a position of having to pull it all together for him, but then he totally went online and read tons of stuff and talked with people for advice and did all the prep. Huzzah!! I will miss him this week. We have barely talked all month really as he has been away a lot and I have been incredibly preoccupied with new love and relationship. We did have a conversation about domestic things. Here is our domestic negotiation about housework and responsibilities: do I act or feel too responsible for house things (yes) though things changed so massively when I went back to work (though, actually over the last few years i’ve been in grad school full time which is also Work and also wrote all the time, also Work though mostly unpaid) and when I became somewhat dramatically disabled in late March so for months – till June really – Rook did pretty much everything (with omissions that built up imho that I am still now dealing with). This because he came to tell me that he felt guilty for leaving the house in chaos and messy and dirty for his trip and perhaps I would help him clean and also i should call the maid service and schedule things. To which I was like Ummm then clean it…. I just cleaned it last week… for example in the last two weeks I have scrubbed things and cleared and decluttered and done endless laundry and recycling and trash. I went so far as to demonstrate where the bathroom cleaning supplies are and what I do to clean it. And in fact it is not that messy… (defensiveness! guilt!) and if he likes… HE could call the maid service and schedule things. To which he counterdefended that actually I am being too touchy about it all and over-responsible-feeling. He complimented my stuff. And I complimented him on his thoughtfulness about food-buying and cat-litter-box-cleaning. And he warned me that I need to rethink my role and that he wants to be careful to not fall into old patterns (both of us) that don’t apply so well now that I am working. I suggested that we do my trick of setting the kitchen timer for 10 or 15 minutes and all doing tidying-putting-away (NOT dishwashing or regular maintenance – but just picking up stuff). Then, it will feel more fair, and not be too onerous. Rook said the timer thing sounds annoying as sometimes he is not in the mood and has things to do. I said that I am NEVER in the mood and always have other things I must or should do and yet, I still find myself at 10pm picking shit up and putting it away and still stumbling over other people’s and my own shoes, toys, clothes, books, trash, etc. Zond-7 has said he will do dishes and trash when he is here… as well. I do not love the idea of an actual chore chart, but it might get tried. It seems easier to declare a brief and limited cleaning-time in the evening… perhaps before the administration of ice cream which often happens around 7:30 or 8. The timer and group participation might also help to relieve me of the responsiblity (which settles on me automatically unless I cultivate deliberate awareness, which I had without thinking till I hit age 30 and had a kid) of being aware of what needs to be done and the *constant undercurrent of putting things away* which is SO useful as a housewife but saps one’s creative energies. I would rather have a filthy house (with the minimum of being able to find keys, wallet, phone, and be able to walk in a clear path without stepping on my clean laundry) and get to think uninterruptedly of other things – dreamily – free in mind.

(And — the house IS somewhat nasty – but not unduly so – and did I mention (defensively) again that, if a toilet has been cleaned, toilet-cleaning stuff bought, or a floor swept, in the last year, and it was not by a hired housecleaner, who do you think has done it? Invariably, me. I mean it’s like once a month. But still, all me. I do not mind; I just want to know it’s appreciated.)

Meanwhile, Moomin’s school started on Monday and it was very exciting. the PTA had muffins and coffee. kids line up on the playground. The curb cuts on the way to school are SUCKY as I wrote to the city facilities person about months ago (and got no answer) and it is dangerous as I go the two blocks and three street-crossings in my wheelchair. I have to go most of the way in the street. A couple of the curbs I can hop in theory, but others I can’t as they are steep and dangerous.

Moomin came home with non-boring non-worksheety homework that is quite minimal… and a million forms we have to both read and sign or initial and that i must fill out. BLAH forms!

A nice mom talked with me today and also a nice dad. When the dad talked about Hell-CC the giant church-opololis on the hill i said my piece about how they are Eeeeevil and discriminate and also sneakily put in lots of religious indoctrination in children’s sports camps that they claim are not religious in focus. Because they’re Eeeeeeeevil. I did not stay quiet about what i think about it but also did not blame him or act snippy… I just SAID. The other mom is queer and nice and smiley and very science-and-writing geeky, and her kid is a huge nerd. Definitely someone i want to hang with!!!

Zond-7 might come, but likely not as he must take his cat to the vet and she will need comforting; he could bring her down on the train but that would not be very comforting. And I can’t go there or I could but it would be a haul with Moomin and also getting back down here for his school by 8:30. alas. So, likely Wednesday.

Last night I nipped up to the city for drinks with Skud and friends as she is going back to AU and on world travelling adventures… Xyzzy was there, and many other friends… I liked the bar a lot – it was very much like Austin bars. Zond-7 and I were over-sappily gazing at each other but I really can’t help it! I ahd fun talking with J. and yatima and then joked around like crazy with jong as we left… and there was indian pizza which Zond-7 heroically obtained… and we played a very pathetic embarrassing game of Galaga. I was really very tipsy on no food and half a mojito, the whole time we were there. I managed the Xtreme Stairs with pride. Oh, walking!

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3 Responses to “Big trips and school”

  1. Patty

    You are SO Flylady!

  2. Madeline F

    Have you seen Chore Wars, XP for housework? Seemed like it might be useful and interesting…

  3. Anne

    Nice post!
    free cat litter

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