It's Being Imperfect Week... I don't know where to start.
1. I fed my cats a 5$ can of fancy Italian tuna packed in olive oil.
I had clinic all morning, admin all afternoon, battled traffic, picked up the kids from Nana's and then brought them home, practically tripping over our two needy, oversized rescue cats, they wending in and out of all of our legs begging for food. We were out of wet cat food. Damn, I thought, got to put that on the list. Meantime I'll give them tuna. But all we had was this overexpensive shmancy tuna from Wholefoods. Why on earth did I spend 5$ on a can of stupid tuna? Because Giada said so, that's why.While I was on maternity leave, I spent many hours breastfeeding on the couch, flipping through foodie shows. You gotta love Giada. She can smile and talk at the same time; her eyes practically pop out of her head as she says things like, "Next time your best girlfriends pop over for an unexpected lunch, you can wow them with this yummy White Bean Tuna Salad, made with ingredients from your pantry! I like to use high quality tuna in olive oil." Well, after 6 p.m. on a weeknight when the kids need to get in the tubby and the cats are frantically hungry and practically eating my legs, is not the time to worry about wasting money. Open went the can and plop into the cat bowls. They loved it. I think they were wowed.
2. I showed up to work on a day I had asked for vacation.
I've actually done this more than once. I can't keep my schedule straight sometimes. We have to ask for our vacation days months and months ahead of time, yet hubby's schedule can change on short notice, so sometimes planned vacations get moved around... I have not yet developed any good system for recording all of this. I have a paper calendar that gets a bit over-marked-up, and I use Google calendars, which is synced to my iPhone calendar. Yet things still fall through the cracks. Amazingly, I have not yet NOT shown up for work on a day I was supposed to work. I don't think... actually I may have.
3. I forgot to pay the mortgage. For two months.
In my own defense, I had had to open a new checking account, as a check I had given to one of Babyboy's behavior therapists had been stolen out of her car. THAT was a pain in the ass. But I did it, and I had even re-set-up the mortgage automatic payments... not realizing that it takes two months for that to kick in, and I needed to manually pay the mortgage in the interim. You would think that after two months I would notice that that amount of money was NOT being deducted from my checking account, but nay, I did not. Things were crazy as usual and I have all the bills on automatic billpay, so I never even looked at my balance. Until the mortgage company started calling. THEN I had a heart attack, explained everything five times, and paid immediately. Then, for weeks afterwards, we got calls from them asking us if we'd like "to talk to someone from customer assistance about our difficulties meeting payments, just to review our options"... which is nice, that they offered, but it was also embarrassing.
4. I had to steal feminine products from the office.
I can't keep my schedule straight, so obviously I can't keep my cycle straight. I've been surprised by my own body more than once. If whoever stocks up the feminine hygiene products at work is wondering why we're always low on these in our area of the office, I am to blame.
5. I had cookie dough for dinner on Saturday.
Hubby was at work, and me and the kids were a bit late-ish getting home from Nana's. I got them home and out of the car, but Babyboy balked in the yard. Sometimes Babyboy will just NOT go into the house. He'll bolt into the yard and play "run away from mom". And to get into our house from the driveway, we have a somewhat rickety set of wooden stairs leading up a story to the back door, so it's pretty impossible to wrangle Babyboy as well as carry Babygirl and everything else into the house solo. I knew I had to get them through dinner and tubbies on my own, and the best way to get him up the stairs is for him to walk. So I bribed him. "We'll bake cookies!" I promised, and up he went, like a little monkey, repeating "Bake COOKies? Bake COOKies?" He LOVES to bake cookies; he even can pull all of the ingredients from the pantry and lug them to the kitchen counter. It's adorable. Also I discovered that cookie bars are fast: SO much easier to make than individual cookies, and people like them better anyways. Anyways, I did get dinner into them both, and the cats fed (not 5$ Italian tuna), But with all the activity, I never got dinner of anykind for myself- so right before the cookie bars went in the oven, while the kids were distracted, I got out a spoon and enjoyed a little treat as my dinner.
6. I went 72 hours without a shower last weekend.
Not the first time I've gone such a stretch, but probably the first since maternity leaves.... It was just one of those weekends. The whole childcare team is down with variations of the same lower respiratory thing. Our Babysitter left early Saturday with a bronchitic cough and the chills, and I had had only enough time to run one big errand (grocery shopping) before she crawled out the door. Hubby was away/ working all weekend, and Nana is also sick, though she did help us out for some short stretches, I didn't want to overwork her. Our neighbor also helped out here and there, but I don't want her to start avoiding me! There is no feasible way to bathe with two kids under thre years old on the loose. So Saturday, then most of Sunday, went by without me washing. AND I was out and about, to the neighbors'; to a friend's barbecue; I even hosted a family dinner on Sunday. Good thing our neighbors, friends and family don't seem to have any issues with my body odor... or at least, as far as I am aware.
7. I throw temper tantrums.
Babyboy can really throw a tantrum. This week he had multiple tantrums for two days in a row. He was getting over a cold, and we think he just didn't feel good... That or he was overtired. Who knows. Sometimes, he gets fixated on something unreasonable/ irrational, like, he has to be up at the altar at church. Or he doesn't want to leave play group. Or he doesn't want to change out of pajamas. Or get in the tubby. And he kicks/ flails/ screams/ cries for up to, and sometimes over, an hour. It's really grating on me when he does this. He is utterly inconsolable. Last tantrum, after 45 minutes, I went to the pantry and pulled out every treat I could find, offering ANYTHING to him if he would JUST STOP SCREAMING. I mean, I was yelling and begging at the same time. His reply? A snuffly, barky: "No. want. treat. Want. go. back. PLAYGROUP." At that point, the babysitter had come and his behavioral therapist was there, so I just had a silent tantrum of my own. "I have to step away," I explained, and I left them with him. Just walked away. Did something else for awhile. He did eventually calm down, and they all said they understood, but I felt bad.
8. I really throw temper tantrums.
I once was so angry at Hubby, I threw raw cookie dough at him. (I guess we make alot of cookies in our house...) It fell short, missed him, and plopped all over the floor. Our fat cat scrambled over to sniff and lick at it. Anyways, it was so ridiculous, we ended up laughing about it. I don't even remember what the fight was about.
9. I have gotten lost in my own town.
Or rather, I have been so distracted that I drove to the wrong place, or forgot where I was going, or I missed the turn. I have called our close friend's kids by the wrong names. I put the wrong last name on a Christmas card to a neighbor. I have written checks in the wrong amount; I have written checks to the wrong names. I rip up alot of checks. I forget birthdays, even when I mark them on the calendar. I forgot administrative assistant's day last week, AGAIN. I clip coupons for the store and forget to bring them; I bring a list to the store and forget something THAT IS WRIITEN ON IT. Not all of these things in the same day, but at least a few in the same month. I see these errors as red flags that I am too busy/ overtired/ stressed, and something needs to go.
10. I am too busy.
Isn't that at the heart of so much of our imperfection: we are all too busy. We have dueling responsibilities; to our patients, colleagues and staff, to our families and communities. Modern life is complex, and creating balance is managing a large, fragile, unwieldy thing. But what it boils down to is simple: Slow down, take some time to appreciate the most important things in life. SIMPLIFY.