Thursday, March 3, 2011

I Can't Drive 55

Today celebrates the third week of unemployment for me. I've discovered several things about myself and my surroundings that I may not have known had I not been forced allowed to slow down and take a hard look at things.

I really don't know what to do with myself when I am not going 100 mph on a daily basis. When trying to look at the bright side of things, I embraced the idea that I would have time to do all those little things I had wanted to do and had had no time for. I think I was done after two days. Of course, there is the constant cleaning, that at least seems to be never ending, but after inhaling cleaning product fumes (although that could provide some amusing highlights to my day) and massaging cracked cuticles, I've had my fill. Nothing like scrubbing a kitchen top to bottom and seeing it return to its former self within 15 minutes of the kids coming home from school.

Laundry has been reduced to about 1 or 2 loads a day, but dust reappears in a half hour.

I have come to terms with the Wii and exercising, but all the good that I do for myself in that 30-45 minutes is offset by the will and determination I must conger up to not eat out of boredom throughout the rest of the day.

I find myself wandering.. a LOT. I wander from room to room, not really knowing what I'm looking for, if anything. It's just hard to sit still.

I have enjoyed the fact that my husband and I can have lunch together and have a conversation without being interrupted. But I find that we tend to talk about the same things over and over. We get nosier about each phone call, text or appointment the other has, just grasping for some iota of information that would bloom into a full-blown discussion to fill the silence. Thanks, Charlie Sheen, for giving us a day's worth of back and forth of incredulous statements of disbelief about your narcissism. Problem is, when the silence hangs there for more than 3 minutes, my husband finds this the perfect opportunity to make weird faces at me, tell knock-knock jokes (not good ones), or imitate the kids' "mom, mom, mom" mantra in case I was missing it. It was cute for the first week, maybe, now I kind of dread him being home for more than an hour at a time. Good thing we will never be able to retire!

I've become addicted to my laptop. The first thing I do in the morning is check the online job offers and see if I have any emails from the companies I've sent my resume to. (Come on people! I'm a great addition! I promise!) Hitting 'refresh' over and over does not make emails magically appear. I devour all the blogs on my reading list and follow the webs of links to more and more reading material.

My dogs are genuinely concerned about my mental health. They must be, they follow right at my heals to ensure I do nothing to harm myself. If I lower my arms, one of the two furry heads are right there to offer ears to be scratched or to give a reassuring sniff. I can now translate head tilts, blank stares and restrained barks. If I suddenly change direction, I trip over them. Also Ripley applies the "snooze you lose" theory to his favorite spot on the couch, which is MY favorite spot on the couch.

Mornings are so carefree and laid back, my children will be rendered immobile when I must return to my Drill Sargent self once I must actually be somewhere by 8 am. The mommy they now love and joke with will once again return to her grumpy harried inner monster. (Although I am enjoying this new morning mom as well, and will try to drag her along for the duration).

I think I wouldn't consider this such a jail sentence if I weren't worried about the financial aspects. With gas getting more and more expensive every day, I'm nearly terrified to drive anywhere outside of my daily routine. I told Shawn to, "Stop guzzling the milk! The kids will need it for cereal. Don't you know how expensive that is? Drink water." He gives me the evil eye has he walks out of the room. What? No lame jokes now? Sheesh!

Well, better go check my email...again. Hey, hon...what are you doing? Nothing? Oh. Me? Oh, nothing.

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