Sunday, May 16, 2010

Waiting for "I"

I like big butts and I cannot lieImage by J. Star via Flickr

So here it is, over a year after what should have been a simple hysterectomy turned my little world all kinds of upside down, sideways, and flip flopity. But that's not what this post is about. This is about how those 13 months have made my back side, oh, and let's just be honest, my front side, and my thighs flip flopity in their own right.

I could make all kinds of excuses, and believe me I have. But this post is not about excuses. This post is about my quest to find the rear end I know is hiding somewhere in the dimpled mush I see when I brave a quick glance in the mirror in the three seconds it takes to grab the towel as I step out of the shower.

I have a lot of talents. I made exceptional grades during my academic career with almost no effort. I worked my way up the corporate ladder at a very young age. I'm witty, funny, charming, and clearly humble (see, there's the wit). Two attributes missing from the list are graceful and athletic.

Only two sports can make me pass as graceful. They are ice skating and its first cousin in-line skating. Now that I live in Texas there is a distinct lack of ice skating rinks. So after trying (with disdain) several aerobic DVD's, I decided to break out my in-line skates this week. The first step was to literally dust them off as they hadn't been used in over a decade (when in-line skating was cool). Then I laced them up and checked my stance. Felt good.

I grabbed my i-pod, a definite improvement over the walk-man I donned the last time I had these on, and figured I'd program a quick play-list for my skate. I chose about ten songs, figuring that would give me a thirty minute skate, and headed out the door.

And it truly was like riding a bike. Without too much effort, I was actually gracefully striding down the street. I decided I would turn into the adjacent neighborhood and take on some hills, you know, liven things up a bit. So there I was, cruising along (okay, huffing a bit), when I realized I forgot my wrist guards. No worries. How likely was it that I would fall? Skating up and down hills. In the dark. After the rain. I pressed on. I could almost feel the muscles in my thighs tightening up as I pushed my way up a hill, when, what the . . . ? A bug flew in my mouth. I spit it out, refusing to stop because I didn't want to loose the momentum I worked so hard to build up. I turned the corner trying to create more saliva to erase the lingering bug taste. Seriously?

By this point, I was ready to head back to the house. My left ankle was pounding, my mouth tasted like bug, I had no wrist guards, which was just plain dangerous for a stay at home mother. If I fell, how would I take care of my child? Who would change his diapers if I broke both of my wrists, I reasoned, still trying to spit with no saliva to mention. All of the sudden I became aware of the song playing on my iPod, Chicken Fried, by the Zac Brown Band.

There it was, mocking me. All of my effort had only brought me to the letter "C" in my small play list. That did it. I dug deep. I headed back to our neighborhood and decided to skate a loop around. By the time I turned onto our street I had once again built up a solid momentum I felt so good I skated right past our house, went to the end of the street, circled the cul de sac and came back up the block.

As Selah sang me home with the words of, "I'll Fly Away" and I saw the light of our garage welcoming me back, I raised my hands, feeling the wind against my face, finally tasting something sweeter than bugs, and felt like I just might fly.
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Friday, March 26, 2010

Little Man's Word of the Week

Little Man is a talker. He has been since the day he was born, although it took about a year for us to understand exactly what he was trying to say. In recent months he's started stringing together words and catch phrases that he repeats dozens of times a day for a couple of weeks and then just as soon as one phrase comes, it is replaced by a new, equally random one.

Sometimes the words are funny, sometimes they are nonsensical, and sometimes they are just what we need to hear.

With that, I give you Little Man's Word of the Week.

Little Man's Word of the Week from Kristen Escovedo on Vimeo.

July- Daba Dee, Daba Doo

January 20 - Ta Da!

February 17 - Perfect

February 20 - Oh Man!

March 20 - Don't Worry.
(This was two days after my husband left for a mission trip to Spain, so it was very timely.)

March 24 - yaHoo!

I will continue to include latest Word of the Week here on the Waiting Room for your enjoyment because we can all use a little random Little Man in our life.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Waiting for the Present - More kindergarten theology

DeLorean DMC12 Back To The Future ReplicaImage by F1RSTBORN via Flickr

Driving home from the park today my five year old daughter posed this question, "Mommy, do we live in the past or the future?"

Smiling at her in the rear view mirror, I replied, "Neither, baby. We live in a time called the present."

Undeterred, she followed up. "But do some people live in the past?"

I pondered for a moment deciding whether my answer should be literal or metaphorical, and knowing neither would suffice, chose to go with honest, "Yes, baby, some people do live in the past."

"Do we live in the past, mommy?" The mixture of excitement and innocence in her voice was both amazing and humbling. It reminds me constantly how jaded I am.

"No. We don't live in the past. We live in the present."

Unfortunately, as much as I wish it was, my answer was not entirely true. There are many days I catch myself longing for the past or wishing for the future. This is not to say I sit around in my pajamas all day eating pints of Rocky Road looking through yearbooks and talking about how things were better in the good old days. However, I've been known to throw myself a pretty exclusive pity party while staring at a pair of jeans I no longer fit into (courtesy of Rocky Road), or longing for the days when my best friends didn't live 800 miles away, bills weren't piled up on the kitchen counter, kids weren't constantly clamoring for my attention, and if I went to the bathroom no one poked their little fingers under the door saying, "Whatcha doin?" the entire time. Heck, there are days I miss Ramen Noodles.

But more than that, I think I spend most of my life looking at what's next. From the age of seven, all I remember wanting to be is 16. Sixteen held something magical in my mind, although I don't recall anymore quite what it might have been. I dressed up pretending to be 16, wrote stories and songs about what I would do when I was 16, and admired girls lucky enough to live that dream. Finally my sixteenth birthday came and I don't think I relished it for even a minute because by that time, all I wanted to do was turn 18 so I could leave my hometown and head off to college. And so it went. In college my focus turned to graduating and getting a job so I could stop eating Ramen Noodles every day. Of course my entire single life focused on getting married, which I did, and no sooner did we walk down the aisle than people started asking, "When are you kids going to have a baby?" Then you are waiting for the pregnancy to be over, waiting for the baby to walk, for her first word, for her to be potty trained (oh dear lord, please!), for her to go to kindergarten, and for her to teach you important lessons . . .

Like mommy, stop waiting, and just enjoy this beautiful day with me at the park. Remember, we don't live in the past. We don't live in the future. We live right now.

This is the day that the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it. ~Ps 118:24
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Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Waiting For Life to Settle

It's been over six months since I resigned from my job. When I say it out loud, or indeed, write it, it seems entirely implausible. Granted, I spent the first two months battling major health

Dust storm in the Texas Dust Bowl, 1935.Image via Wikipedia

issues and recovering from a surgery that (thank the good Lord) fixed them, but still, that leaves a quarter of a year since this major life change.

Giving up my high stress full-time job for my full-time mommy/wife gig, I just had it in my mind that things would look somewhat different by now. My house would be much cleaner; all the clutter de-cluttered and sold on e-bay for extra cash. I'd be a better cook, having cooked my way through two or three Rachael Ray cookbooks (I have no delusions I could make it through even one Julia Child's recipe, let alone an entire book). My son would be potty trained before he was two. I'd be the ultimate volunteer at my daughter's school and be honored with one of those awards I used to write press releases about. I'd post on this blog at least four times a week to the delight of my thousands of faithful followers, write a novel, become more active in my church, and fit into my tiny little pre-pregnancy jeans.

Ummm . . .

My daughter's closet was clean for about three days but Goodwill required less effort than e-bay and I rationalized that decision with the old "tax write off" excuse (although it's March and I haven't started my taxes yet). I've cooked exactly two Rachael Ray recipes, even though I've probably watched more than 100 hours of Food Network. My son has washed his hands in the potty more than once, which I realize is disgusting, but I take comfort in the fact it is not as disgusting as it would be if he actually peed in it first. I've managed to make it to three events at my daughter's school, although not in a volunteer capacity, which is probably for the best since I was late to two of them. I joined a Bible study, even though I think that this week's absence makes it official that I've missed more than I've attended. Prior to tonight, my last blog post was in January and besides my mother, my 8 followers (thank you faithful few) have not been banging down the door demanding I write another post.

I hate those stupid little jeans.

So what's the deal? Not to brag, but for past 12 years I was a pretty darn successful career woman. For four of the past five I did, what I considered to be a mighty fine job of balancing the whole working mommy thing. So now that I have all this time on my hands, why haven't I conquered the world?

Believe me, I ask myself this question frequently.

I feel like I'm in a constant state of transition. I keep telling myself, "As soon as 'fill in the blank happens' I'll 'fill in the blank.'" 'Blanks' started with getting healthy, which seemed like an insurmountable task for almost a year. But then I got healthy after which came the transition of withdrawal from pain meds. Then came Thanksgiving, then Christmas. Then our family was thrown into transition when my dad retired, which I thought would allow me an entirely different set of opportunities. So, I thought to myself, why settle into a routine, since it will just get all upset anyway. Plus who can settle in, well with all the craziness surrounding Martin Luther King Day and tracking the Vegas odds on Punxsutawney Phil's shadow sightings. And don't even get me started on St. Urho's Day preparations.

Did I mention I chase around an almost two year old boy all day long?

My children and husband are well loved and I keep telling myself that counts for something. And I hope it's true, because this season is the first one in my life where I don't have a product, a paycheck, a grade, or all three at the end of the day to measure my results. On the flip side, it is the first season in my life I've been rewarded exclusively in milk mustache kisses, ketchup covered hugs, and "I love you, mommy's."

I guess this last five . . .er . . .ten pounds can wait.

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Waiting for Applause

My 21 month old son recently discovered the words, "Ta Da!" I'm not sure where he first heard them, but they entered his vernacular with the same ease that he pushes a safety pin into an electrical socket. And with the same result.

Ta Da! is now the beginning, middle, and end of all of his sentences. If you have read any of my past posts, you know he is not a quiet or still child. The phrase "all boy" was coined for children like him. He is fond of hitting things with plastic hammers, loves all things electric, climbs, jumps, runs, tackles - he is a writers' dream as his life is a never ending stream of active verbs.

With the addition of Ta Da! he now does all things as if he is on stage waiting for applause.

Take all of the cups out of the drawer, stack them up, knock them down with a wooden spoon. Ta Da!

Spot the beagle sleeping soundly in the middle of the floor, straddle him, sit, smile. Ta Da!

Pull the baseboard off the kitchen floor, run through the house swinging it like a lightsaber. Ta Da!

Dump the bowl of chocolate pudding onto the table. Ta Da! Finger paint with the pudding. Ta Da! Listen to mommy say, "Don't put the pudding in your hair." What's that mommy said? Put the pudding in your hair. Ta Da!

See mommy writing this blog post. Sense that mommy hasn't saved. Take your yellow plastic tweezers from your doctor's kit and hit the ESC key while she is typing.

Ta Da!