Friday, July 2, 2010

House of Quiet

I keep getting asked how I’m doing being home ALONE for eight full days, so I’ll try to answer that question here. First off, I’m doing fine, but I have discovered a few things these past few days. Many mothers think of time away from their crazy family life as some kind of mommy-porn. I totally understand this, as I’ve threatened more than once to leave on a month-long silent retreat at some Buddhist monastery. Sometimes the noise level of kids and husband and dog and neighborhood kids is overwhelming. But I tell you what, I miss the noise and the craziness. I’m sure there is something to be said about the sound of silence, but I think I prefer the sound of chaos. It’s not that I haven’t enjoyed the solitude and peace of being alone, but enough already. I’m so accustomed to my life orbiting around Jim, Quinn and Logan that with them gone and me having to fend only for myself, I feel a bit dizzy. I just don’t take that much work, I guess. Whether it’s cooking or cleaning or working or whatever, very little effort goes into maintaining a single existence.

So what am I doing differently with the boys gone? Not a whole heck of a lot. I’m cooking with more garlic, and I play my music louder, but really it feels a little pathetic to eating and drinking alone and I find myself talking to the cat, which makes me think how easy it would be to become one of those crazy cat ladies. I’ve had lots of tangential thoughts ranging from death to Paris to places people live. I’ve spent more time visiting with friends, and I’ve been logging long hours getting caught up with work, but even then, I still have more free time than I know what to do with. I’m running daily and reading late into the night, I’m attending friends’ children’s dance recitals, I’m throwing an “estrogen” party to get my girl-fix, but really I’m counting down the minutes to Jim and the boychicks returning home.

It’s strange really, because it’s not that I don’t know how to be alone, or what to do with myself, that isn’t the issue at all. I guess it is more the realization that when you are living your life with intention and choice and consciousness, then you don’t really need a break from that because it is all so damn good. So maybe that is what I’ve gotten most from this week—that life is good and I’m as happy as is possible and that I don’t need a break from bliss. I revel in the hormonal surges of teenagers, the demands of owning our own businesses, the monitoring of the comings and goings, the conversations, the cooking, the picking up, the reminding, and the loving. My life is a verb, and I much prefer it to being a noun.

Five more days to go until my house of crazy bliss is back. I’ll be waiting with open arms, but in the mean time I’ll embrace the quiet and peace, knowing that it will soon be over and I may look back on this week and wonder why the heck I was so ready for it to end.