Monday, October 4, 2010

Outside Looking In

I had a great day.  Every now and again, we are in a position to state this and really mean it. 

What is the opposite of great?  Not great.  As I type, my day has managed to flip from great to not great...just like that.  Actually, all it took was a little visit to my home computer to check my email.  In five short minutes, a little black cloud got itself parked over my head where the sun used to be and I felt the now familiar feeling of being on the 'outside looking in' on my own family - kids, step-kids, parent, siblings, husband.  There are plans being made and e-conversations bouncing that I feel I should be part of or be included in, as a mother, step-mother, sister, daughter.  Instead, I am feeling omitted, ignored, forgotten, and left outside of a few 'loops'. 

I am reminded again that there are those close to me who are happy to have the company of my children, the financial fruits of my labour, the services of my home-making, the company of my canines, and whatever my refigerator might offer up; however, they are not really interested in being with me.

If life offers up a steady stream of lessons, the lesson in this for me is to develop an awareness that I, too, am capable of actions that could have this same effect on people I am called to care about.  We all have people in our lives that actively enjoy our company.  It is important that we define ourselves by their acts of inclusion, rather than the passive acts of omission that occasionally sting us.

There is an oft-quoted line, "If you can't be with the ones you love, love the ones you're with".  I have given it my own little spin:  "If the ones you love can't be bothered being with you, love the ones who do".

Who have you inadvertantly skipped over?  Technology makes it easier than ever.  Let us all try to develop the mindfulness required in an age of face-to-face conversations, phone calls, email and text messages that it is now very easy to circumvent people - with or without intention.

We all need to take care - of ourselves, our communication practices and of others - always.

Monday, September 6, 2010

What I Learned This Summer

It is Labour Day and I am afforded a break from a steady, busy summer to relax, reflect and regret going to bed at 2:30 am...

In bullet form and in no particular order, these are some of the things that I learned during this summer of 2010:

•  Ontario is a fantastic place to live and if I never flew on another plane, this province could keep me occupied and amazed until my dying days (thank you to Oliphant, Kingston, Camp Lake, Sauble Beach, Fisherville, Wiarton, Thornbury, Toronto's Harbourfront, Southhampton, etc.)  So very much more to see - so little time!

•  In my 50th year, my heat tolerance is almost nil - like my reading vision.

•  Engaging in Craigslist efforts is very fun!

•  Blended families don't always blend - and that has to be okay.

•  Truth and honesty are my life-blood.

•  Some people are sociopathic and we all need to guard ourselves accordingly.

•  I really dislike playing host to parasites - of the insect and human variety.

•  We should all heed the warnings of raising teen-agers.  They are truly humans in transition.

•  Learning to text has its advantages.

•  Mothers need the emotional support of other mothers.  They are truly the only ones who 'get it'.

•  Good books and good movies make the world a better place.

•  Facebook is fun.  Connecting with friends and associates from other life stages has so many unexpected rewards.  It is a tool to be used only as one sees fit and connects us with little energy strands to the people that enhance our lives.

•  Bringing a new baby hamster into a home filled with teens and adults is a delightful thing to do!!

•  Kahlil Gibran is right:  our children are not our children...they simply pass through us on their way to the future and we have a duty to guide them, not own them.  But guide them we must - even if they have no interest whatsoever in our hard-won wisdom and experience.

•  Being a teacher on summer vacation loses something when everyone else in the family is heading to work every morning, often leaving me wishing that I could just head off to work too - especially since I am fortunate enough to really enjoy my job.

•  Even at age 78, my mother has shown incredible resilience and adaptability in recent months as she has been buffeted by the physical and emotional ups and downs of so many people that she cares about!

•  The lives of others have reminded me this summer that I am really thankful not to have had an expensive car accident, not to have been broken into and had all of my valuables stolen, not to have a parent in a care facility recovering from knee surgery, not to have parents and siblings struggling with cancer, not to find myself existing in a loveless marriage, not to be unemployed, and not to be chronically worrying about my children.  This perspective is of great importance.

•  I don't have to be "nice" to everyone.  Neutral is okay if there is no reciprocal relationship.  I have only so much energy and I need to budget it wisely so that the needs of all I have a duty to are met. 

•  busy, self-absorbed, distracted teen-agers still love their pets - even if they don't show it.

•  Summer is wonderful but it's really nice to anticipate fall!

Wondering what you learned this summer - would love to read some comments from any and all who have thoughts to share.

Happy 'New' Year!

Wondering Woman (who can't wait to meet her new little kindergarten students this week!!)


Wednesday, July 21, 2010

craigslist magic

One upside of having the summer "off" is that it affords one with time to explore things that require some time and energy.  I have been curious about craigslist for a number of months now, based on the experiences of some people that I know.  Thus, I gave up close to four hours yesterday, setting up an account, taking photos of items I am ready to part with, posting ads in the appropriate categories and then dealing with the responses that began to arrive in my gmail account.  While time consuming, I decided that it was my 'learning curve' day and made peace with the fact that today- one day later - I am $10 richer and two items lighter.

I stated in an earlier blog entry that there are other currencies besides money.  This was in great evidence today as I executed my two transactions with my first two 'customers'.  The first woman arrived by public transit, expressed deep gratitude for the bike that I was selling 'as is' for $10, and shared her story with me of being a single parent immigrant with a young child making a life in our city.  I felt like I should be the one thanking her instead for taking the bike off my hands and presenting such kindness and thankfulness on a hot, humid morning.  My time spent with her truly lifted my spirit.

One hour later, I arrived at the local subway station at the appointed hour to hand over a 'free' cat carrier bag.  This was the real prize...I received at least twenty emails from people hoping to obtain it from me.  I second-guessed posting it for free after I discovered that it retailed for at least $60.  The real goal was to get it into the hands of a cat owner who could use it, however.  The young woman who met me at the station was lovely, appreciative and gracious.  The cat carrier would be of use during a future move as she had two cats and only one carrier.  Just when I thought that this exchange was perfect enough, she pulled a book out of her bag and asked me if I would be interested in it.  Yes,  I definitely would be!  And so beyond exchanging items and pleasantries, we shared a  mutual sense of happiness as we parted. 

Yes, I have given this exercise a lot of time and energy in the past twenty-four hours.  No, it will not be my path to future riches (although I plan to take myself to a movie this afternoon using my monetary proceeds).  I now have two items out of my household, and the knowledge that two kind, grateful women made the effort on city transit to invite these items into their lives and put them back to good use.  I also have a few hours of delicious summer reading awaiting me, thanks to the thoughtfulness of the new owner of the cat carrier.

Most of all, while on-line endeavours of this type have the potential to go very wrong, I have instead experienced two encounters with all that is good about humanity.  I have been gently reminded that I have so much and that sharing with others blesses both the one that receives and the one that gives.

Wondering what to post for sale next and who might benefit along with me...

Wondering Woman

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Black and White

I have been saddled with a brain that likes to organize, categorize, systemize.  I do this at every opportunity throughout the day.  I have a need to take the colour grey and shift it one way or the other.  I accuse myself daily of rigid thinking, recognizing that it seems to be how I operate but that it is not a life-enhancing quality.

These difficulties are magnified at this time in my life by the fact that I live with a large number of people in a family system vastly different from my family of origin.  I presently operate in the role of 'mother' which I am finding to be fundamentally isolating and challenging within the family unit.  I believe that every social unit ends up with someone playing the mother role - and wishing he or she could be the father or one of the kids instead.  I accepted long ago that being a mother is generally a thankless slog-fest, joining the multitudes of women who came to the same conclusion long before I did.  I also accept that mothers operate as the sun or the axle, and the other family members rotate around the centre force that we provide.  Further, I completely accept that our children at least need to be able to fully take our being for granted so that they might launch their own lives from a stable platform.  All of that said, I am very glad that I am a mother.  The role has expanded me beyond myself.

Two thoughts have risen to the surface of late in my efforts to comprehend the multitudinous relationships that govern people.  The first is that people are either of the narcissistic persuasion or they are not.  Second, people are either of the impulsive 'live for the moment' persuasion or they are not.  We all then live within combinations of these two traits; e.g., the impulsive narcissist who is incapable of thinking beyond today or beyond him or herself, or the person of service who can and does plan, prepare and set goals, or the self-absorbed individual who competently plans for the future, or the unselfish giver who has great intentions but can never get his or her act together to execute anything.

I have been able to tease out causes of friction and difficulty between people as I explore the dynamic that happens when the self-absorbed work or co-exist with the service-driven individuals.  Similarly, there is little or no congruence between those who operate with rational thoughts and those who are driven by impulsivity and magical thinking.  One group is very black to the other group's white.  Getting to grey is hardly an option when behaviours are so much a part of the essence of who each person is.  These traits exist in different combinations within my immediate and extended family and are proving to be an increasing source of frustration to me (and probably to some of my family members near and far). 

I count on time, counsel and reflection to soften the walls of my thinking.  The family ranks are swollen given the ages and stages of the children.  This will subside.  I am definitely hoping to mellow with age.  I work hard to understand that we all are who we are and to govern my expectation of others and myself accordingly.

Figuring it all out, one day at a time,

Wondering Woman

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Half Birthday the risk of revealing my date of birth, today is my "half-birthday".  Six more months and I will be 50 years old/young/whatever....

I have been acutely aware that this is the year that my body decided to slide from youngish to oldish.  Cellulite, "fat" arms, back fat, rapidly greying hair, the need to purchase reading glasses, an ache in my knee that troubles me on stairs, memory issues, etc have been on my daily radar.  Of course, it probably doesn't help that I go through half a bag of corn chips (unsalted) with salsa every evening.  In past, I simply would have gotten away with it.  Those days are gone.

It is time now to face the mounting challenges:  make peace with a thickening body, make piece with greying hair, make peace with poor reading vision, make peace with occasional aches and pains, make peace with lines and wrinkles, make peace with teeth that look like they are 50 years old.

I hold June Callwood in high esteem for many reasons.  At this point in my life, I am reminded of her comments about her appearance a number of years ago.  I am paraphrasing; however, she stated to an interviewer that "this is what a 60-year-old face looks like".  She taught me then, and I need the lesson now, that it is right and good to accept our aging with grace.  Laugh lines, grey hair. yellowing teeth, and bellies are earned...we really don't need to be the first generation in history to decide that it is all ugly and demeaning. 

It is incumbent upon us all to take care of ourselves and govern our health accordingly.  That said, it is okay to look like 49-and-a-half when one is 49-and-a-half.  Let us leave looking 20 to the 20-year-olds and 30 to the 30-year-olds.  Who are we trying to kid, if not ourselves?

Wondering (and creeping towards the rest of my life...)

Wondering Woman

Friday, April 16, 2010

"Putzing around" - Thoughts on Motherhood

I often ponder the meaning of being a mother, from the perspectives of both the mother and the child.  Life experiences, observations, and reading have informed me that the needs of the mother and the child can compete with each other and are often mutually exclusive. 

I have had the very good fortune of being raised by a mother who was "there" for me and my siblings.  Of course, this was a generation ago and she was not financially obligated to contribute to the family finances (i.e., work outside the home for wages).  Further, she was truly born to be a mother, and there are many who gratefully consider her to be an honourary mother to them.  She has more maternal love, energy and goodness to give than her three children and numerous grandchildren and step-grandchildren require.  There continue to be times for her when being a mother (or grandmother or mother-in-law) is difficult and crazy-making.  However, she understands that it's all part of the package of loving, caring and being there.

From a child's perspective (first-born, introverted and lacking in confidence), she was - and continues to be - my rock.  In trying to tease out why I feel this way, it is because she was always "there".  I would not deem her to be a martyr or a crutch or a door-mat.  She has consistently demonstrated resolve, good judgement and a deep sense of what her priorities are.  Before we were adults, she quietly helped us to understand that she would continue to support us and shepherd us along as life and circumstances required it - without setting us up for crippling dependence.  For me as a child and teen, there was a palpable security in knowing that my mother simply was.  I never felt abandoned by her and I never felt that her passions came ahead of my well-being.  She is an energetic, engaging, friendly, creative woman who continues to be able to knit her strengths, dreams and desires into her understanding that she has a long-term duty to the children she bore - without them taking advantage of her.

I am reading a book of short stories by Neil Smith (Bang Crunch Stories).  In one tale, a seventeen-year-old boy who lives with his widowed mother expresses himself as follows while his mom prepares herself for an evening date:

"I want to say, Don't go.  Not that I'm afraid her date is an axe murderer.  Or that I don't want her meeting someone, getting over my father.  Or even that I want to talk about what's eating me.  I'd just like her here, that's all.  Putzing around the apartment the way moms do, while I sulk in my room."

Boom!  That little paragraph says it all for me, where a child's perspective is concerned.  In healthy, normal relationships, kids (even late teens), just want their moms home - around - near.  I remember having the same deep desire - and usually having it satisfied, save for the occasional times when my mom went out in the evening or had a very brief vacation from the chaos of home and kids.  

Our twenty-first century western lives of education, employment, financial independence, entitlement and an awareness of the self might serve the personal needs of mothers.  I am not so sure that it satisfies the deeper attachment needs of the child.  My concern is that once we become mothers, it's not about us anymore.  We give birth to young, developing, vulnerable humans who need to know we are there for them (thnk of elephants and primates).  It strikes me as primal and foundational.  Children need to be able to take our maternal presence  - not our personhood - for granted in order to develop secure attachments and emotional stability.  It seems to me that if we consistently give them the message that our needs come ahead of theirs, attachment bonds weaken and children develop defense strategies to dull the pain of accepting that their primary care-giver is conditional in her care-giving.  It is all about actions, not words, where children (and pets, for that matter) are concerned.  As mothers, if we message to our children by our actions and our presence that their emotional health, physical health, and well-being is our priority, we set our children up for emotional security.  If, however, our message to our dependents is conditional upon our needs, our schedules, our hobbies, our jobs, our loves and our desires, their emotional security falters.

Motherhood requires of us that we be grounded, giving and sufficiently developed beyond our own need for self-gratification.  It's not about us anymore.  Happily, once we embrace that ideal, it no longer matters that it's not about us.  Love and service to others - especially our dependents - has the power to elevate us to another state of being, not measured by earning power, wrinkle-free skin, degrees, dress-size, marathon times, golf scores, airline miles, Facebook Friends, etc.   Our children do benefit from seeing that we are fully-formed, happy adults with balanced lives.  They benefit even more from experiencing the stability that we can offer them because we recognize that, in the grand scheme of things, it's our turn to support their growth and development - not get side-tracked or consumed in our own.  After all, if we as mothers are not mothering our children, who is?

Our busy lives require that our homes are typically empty by day due to the demands of work and school; however when evenings, week-ends and holidays arrive, there is an opportunity to be together in the same space.  The fictional seventeen-year-old reminded me that the mental health and well-being of our children requires our maternal preparedness to simply be at home, "putzing around", when they are home. If these windows of time are not appreciated, what time does it leave?

Our children will become adults some day.  As mothers, will we look back and see that we actively raised them or that we shared the same mailing address and they raised themselves while we continued to develop ourselves?

Interestingly, in the same way that adult women yearn for the company and love of adult companions (not self-centered juveniles), children yearn for the love and guidance of adult parents (not self-centered juveniles). 

Wondering and worrying....

Wondering Woman

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


"There are other currencies besides money."

This I learned over a decade ago during a session with a counsellor during the break-up of my first marriage.  It was brought  to my attention again during a fundraising drive at the church I attend.  The point has now been made to me many times  that we all have multiple avenues for giving and receiving. 

There are times in almost every life where money is in short supply.  This may be a chronic norm for many.  However, we are able to indulge others with time, energy, food, a listening ear, labour, drving, babysitting, reading materials, the use of tools, clothes, equipment, etc., and so on.

Different peoples' lives have served to bring financial realities into focus for me lately.  How do we manage money?  How do we manage debt?  How do we plan to pay for our lives if we live to be 90 years old (and our parents do the same)?  Should we be "living for today" if we are living in the red?  If we have a financial obligation to children, at what point do we wake up to the fact that we have to plan for them?  Where children are concerned, at what point do we say, "You're an adult now...make some choices and figure it out..." (but don't come to me for money)?

It is subjective, tricky, emotionally loaded terrain.  Running through the veins of any discussions about currency is the weight of responsibility.  Are you responsible?  How much and what for?

Like eating and sleeping, a mindfulness towards  money and all other life currencies is requisite.

Hoping you're wondering too!

Wondering Woman

Friday, March 5, 2010

Marching on...

I am amazed at the ebbs and tides of life.  February escaped me entirely.  I can sit here now and state that I celebrated the 100th Day of School, Valentines Day, Family Day, Chinese New Year, all aspects of our very heady Canadian Olympic experience, family birthdays, etc.  While that was happening, I assessed 39 students, wrote 26 report cards and conducted 21 parent-teacher interviews.  While that was happening, I dealt with head lice in our household and vomiting.  While that was happening, our two university kids returned home for Reading Week.  While that was happening, family law financial woes raised their ugly and ever-present heads - yet again.  (Okay children of all need jobs and you need them now!)

Happily, as spring thinks about returning to our fair city, I can report that the steady rush of activity is mostly finished.  Life can now return to "normal" (very frugal but normal).  "Normal" holds greater and greater appeal the older one gets and the more lives one is called upon to manage. 

Every day reminds me in some way that life is ironic.  I was struck today that my first husband left me, even though I had four young children and my second husband married me, even though I had four young children.  One husband thinks I walk on water and the other thinks that I am the devil incarnate.  As is often said, "it takes all kinds".

Finally, my grade 11 daughter complained today that she always seems to be the one that has to refill the milk container with a new bag (which, I admit, is annoying).  It seemed to be an opportune time to remind her that at least we had milk in our home as I once needed to loan a financially challenged friend some cash so that she could at least buy food and milk for her son.

We live, we experience, we stretch, we grow. 

Always trying to examine the life that I am living,

Wondering Woman

Sunday, January 31, 2010


I went with my family to see the movie "Nine" this evening.  It is very wow!  I left the theatre envying my children for being half Italian.  It is all very chic, very groovy, very risque. 

The women lucky enough to star in the movie are all fantastic, without exception:  Sophia Loren, Kate Hudson, Nicole Kidman, Penelope Cruz (my husband's personal favourite...), Judy Dench, Fergie, and Marion Cotillard.  They are beautiful, seductive and powerful, each in her own way.  Daniel Day-Lewis is similarly amazing.  I watched the movie with a sense of envy at the thought of how much fun it would have been to have been a part of it.

"Nine" is beautiful to watch - courtesy of the sets, the lighting, the actors, Italy itself.  What pleased me most, however, was the fact that the women on screen were able to deliver crows' feet, laugh lines, chicken pox scars, curves and solid flesh.  In other words, they were real, they were talented, and they were above and beyond the need to make us think that they are actually younger than they are.  They possess voices that sing, bodies that dance, personalities that shine, and a strength of being that is so admirable. 

It is always fun to be transported by a film; to have a couple of hours away from one's own life.  This is a movie that I would watch again.  Who needs a ten when "Nine" is so very fine?

Wondering what it would be like to be in a beautiful movie some day...

Wondering Woman

Thursday, January 28, 2010


I nearly melted my VISA yesterday. 

A trip to the dentist necessitated my taking the afternoon off work (and hauling out the VISA).  From there, I worked my "to do" list at home for a couple of hours (including an in memoriam donation - on my VISA), then decided I actually had the steam to head to our local mall...persuaded by the promise of January sales and the annual winter antique show in progress. 

I have been in need of a new ski jacket for a couple of years now.  I am rather fussy - it has to be completely right or I'd rather wear the tired, ratty one that I presently own.  I forced myself to try on various jackets for over an hour and finally found "the one".  Sadly, unlike the others, it was not on sale.  However, I will wear it for at least five to ten years and I love it, thus justifying the fact that it would pay for a family's groceries for a month.  Hello VISA... 

My next stop was to have been a celebratory free coffee, courtesy of my brand new Second Cup promotion card.  En route, as I passed display after diplay of antique furniture, figurines, maps, jewels, paintings and the like, I saw it:  a perfect little bronze borzoi, standing in its glass case, surrounded by an eclectic variety of treasures.  Given that I always search for sight hounds when this particular show is on, usually without success, my heart did a little flip.  "How much is the little wolfhound?", I  asked the proprietor.  He replied with a very healthy number for something no larger than the palm of a hand.  "I'll take it please.  It is truly beautiful and reminds me of my own dog at home."  He kindly decided that the price was "including tax" (most appreciated), and proceeded to wrap the little wolfhound in tissue for me.  Did I want a bag?, he wondered.  No thank you.  It would be just fine, tucked into my breast pocked, close to my heart.  Once again, my VISA worked its magic, and a little bronze dog which originated from an estate sale in Montreal was in my delighted care. 

The day was not yet over.  I am a very happily married woman - and most grateful for my lot in life.  Five years ago, my husband proposed to me.  It was high time for me to show him a token of my deep feelings and appreciation.  I made a dinner reservation, called him at work to let him know that he had plans for the evening, and spent two wonderful hours with him, over food and wine, warming in the glow of a relationship that has blessed us both.  Happily, I hauled out my VISA one last time, before we made our way home and wrapped up the day.

There is no way that I can indulge in that kind of spending on a regular basis.  I specualted that my horoscope might have told me that it was "a good day to spend money - especially on those things that bring health, happiness and joy".  Of course, I did not need a horoscope to tell me that.  It simply and truly was a perfect day to spend some money on my dental care, a memorial donation, a new coat, an object of particular beauty, and a perfect dinner out for two. 

Wondering if I should buy a lottery ticket next....

Wondering Woman

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Strong Girls

Today delivered three very strong women to me within a window of two hours after work.  My head continues to mull over the impressive power, care and energy that each of them have displayed in their respective lives.  They leave me feeling humbled by their strength, dedication and generosity of time, love and care.

Strong Girl Number One is one of my favourite coffee servers at my favourite coffee spot.  She's very present, firm in her views and opinions, passionate about her role as a single parent to her young daughter, and filled with an inner flame that burns bright.  I was thrilled to run into her and shared a warm new year's embrace.  Her former co-worker recently had her first baby.  Not only is this new mother relatively new to Canada (and English and the cost of living in Toronto and...), she strikes me as being very unlike Strong Girl in terms of temperment.  However, their relationship is real, raw and powerful. SG proudly displayed the photo of the new baby on her cell for my viewing pleasure (very cute!) and is presently deeply involved in bolstering the new mother's powerful feelings of fear and inadequacy.  I love the fact that two women whose lives crossed in a local coffee shop, serving, brewing, and cleaning, are capable of such depth in their relationship.  The new mother is very blessed indeed!

Strong Girl Number Two appeared ten minutes later at the grocery store.  Again, new year's greetings were exchanged and we did a quick catch up on each other's lives.  Hers has been less than simple of late.  Both of her parents are seriously ailing (cancer, blindness) and her brother (not yet fifty) has been fighting his own war with cancer.  Despite being equipped for what could be an easy, leisurely life, this Strong Girl has embraced a life of duty and care for her compromised family members.  She is now a shopping, meals-on-wheels, get-people-to-appointments expert.  This was not a path she expected to be on at this point, I am sure.  However, she radiates positivity (while admitting to hidden inner struggles) and has clearly accepted and embraced the packages that life has delivered to her.  Should I ever find myself in similar circumstances, I can only hope to have the positivity, energy and resilience that she displays.  Her life has been a grind of late by many measures and yet, somehow, she injected me with whatever is keeping her spirits high and her smile bright.

Strong Girl Number Three is a true hero for me at this time.  Her former partner was diagnosed with terminal cancer less than three months ago, precipitating a journey that was surely a far cry from anything that she ever might have imagined.  She quickly became the prime agent of care and support, having to wrap her head around watching him decline rapidly, learning to navigate the daily rhythm of hospital life, looking to a future which sentences her young son to a life without his father, getting "affairs in order", planning a funeral, allowing herself to take temporary leave of a job that she loves, and some how finding the strength to rise every morning and face the day, no matter what challenges and difficulties awaited her and hers.  Her son's father passed away this week, bringing some closure to their situation, as well as  the very present tasks of funeral preparations, bolstering her son, and acknowledging the abundant expressions of love, grief and support offered up by the multitudes that care so much about her and her family.  Tonight, while receiving guests in her home, she was radiant.  Tired, thin but radiant.  She had the look of pottery that had been fired.  She seems to have evolved into a completely new person, courtesy of this experience and loss.  She now possesses the expanded heart of one who has said good-bye for the last time.  This Strong Girl is shining brightly tonight.  She has been through the fire and has come out the other side.  Peace to her and her son.

I am humbled but happy with the encounters that I had with these three formidable women today.  Good things do indeed come in three's!

To their strength!
Wondering Woman

Saturday, January 2, 2010


Nice number, huh? 

Our hot water heater has been broken since New Year's Eve.  We are expecting that it will be replaced tomorrow - Januray 3rd - three days later...  Thus it was that this afternoon, enjoying a very necessary bath at my childhood home, I had cause to reflect on today's date.  This little number pattern won't occur again until November 2nd, 2011.  I have passed my "number" gene on to some of my children.  They are torn between mocking my systemizing brain and the pure joy of resonating with any little numerical epiphanies I manage to have.  Life's little pleasures indeed!

Today is the day that our Christmas tree made its way to the curb, number one son headed back to university, our main floor got thoroughly cleaned - helped in part by my managing to spill a pot of coffee all over the kitchen floor (remembering that we have no hot water in our taps to assist with the big wipe up), and I watched "About a Boy" (Hugh Grant) with my husband.  We all felt a bit more awake than we did yesterday. 

January 1st is definitely not the best day to make plans or presume to be in peak performance mode.  However, January 2nd is different.  Christmas is packed away, the vacuum has done what it can, and the canines have decided that things are now back to "normal".  The fog of the new year's arrival is disappearing and 2010 is coming nicely into focus.  The new calendars are hung, the new work week is looming, holiday goodies are nearly all consumed, and resolutions are being pondered....

The past few days have been challenging without hot water, given that there are seven people at home, all wanting showers, clean clothes and washed dishes.  It was pointed out to me that at least it wasn't a problem with our furnace.  Too true!  Perspective in all things is worth its weight in gold.  Our furnace works, our toilets flush, our phones work, we have electricity and running water.  We've discovered that life goes on without hot water.  (Buddy, can you spare a shower?)

I am entering this new year with the steadfast confidence that all is well - even if it isn't.  For as we know, it is in dealing with the potholes that we become more agile.  I will take agile over fragile any day!

Wishing one and all a happy, healthy 2010!

Wondering Woman