A long awaited 4 day weekend just passed. A break I desperately needed, and the kids just wanted for the simple and obvious reason : NO SCHOOL. It was a break during which -like most weekends and other Holiday Weekends- I was looking forward to family time, to fun and yummee cooking and playing games with my kids.
As I have mentioned in previous posts, the almost instinctive behaviour of cleaning and finishing neglected chores takes over me gradually but surely. No matter how hard I try to keep in mind, with bright yellow mental POST IT notes: “I want to relax and have fun”- my motherly and housewife responsibilities win the game in the end.
I looked up a recipe that looked (initially) simple and delicious -Cannon does wonders with photos- and realized I had all the ingredients it called for.
I spent, all in all, a good 2 hours in the kitchen. So what exactly determines the “Preparation Time” in those impossible recipes??? I wonder! From the time you start taking out the ingredients, ’til you are done cleaning up the kitchen, (not including doing dishes of course), it is invariably, over an hour.
During the time I was in the kitchen, standing with both my back and legs hurting (I am definitely getting old fast), my kids were mostly alone, watching TV, playing Chess or just picking at each other out of boredom. The day was beautiful, so I felt even more miserable inside the house just peeking through my kitchen window.
Dinner was served and to be honest, the flavor wasn’t that great, it just “filled the hole”. My poor husband, who is recovering from a nose surgery, could barely taste anything those days, so whatever resulted from my recipe, wouldn’t have really mattered. At the end of the day, just to get out of the house I took a walk with the kids and went to shoot some basketball. I wondered, is cooking really worth it? That afternoon, actually that whole weekend, the answer was: NO!
All I could think of was my brother and sister in Mexico, who both have live in help and realized that I would give an arm and a leg to have someone cook us some decent meals while I play with my kids, or watch a movie with them or exercise with them, a goal I’ve had in mind for years now.
I already spend too much precious time at work and commuting to/from work, so the hours I have left at home I would very much like to spend them relaxing and building nice memories with the whole family. I see both my kids stretching by the hour, so tall, so grown up, and it makes me miss the toddler days sometimes- just sometimes.
They are at the age when you can have all types of interesting conversations, almost like an adult, an age in which they still let you inside their thoughts, their fears and anxieties without feeling prejudiced or embarrassed. An age that will soon pass and I will miss and could regret for having spent half the time cooking and doing dishes.
Middle School is fast approaching and I have a feeling my son could easily shut down when feeling lonely, sad or -even worse- angry. I am trying to build a very strong bridge between us, that he can walk to and fro with all the ease in the world: to come to me, and let me come to him.
The only times I can say “YES It was worth it!” with confidence, are the times I have sat on the floor to build a toy , played a board game or gone for a walk or hike with them. Or the times I have engaged in a 20 minute conversation with them , about something they did not understand and needed to be explained. Just recently they both asked me about Home Loans, Credit Scores and Credit Cards. At 8 & 10 years old, I had to keep it simple with very basic math, explaining that the Credit Score was like our Report Card with how good or bad we behave with our money. It lasted 10 minutes and the next day, my daughter decided to open a savings account with her $5.40.
Was it worth it? Yes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!