I Know Why the Soccer Mom Cries Into Her Pink Champagne 08.02.2013
Soooo .... I have no real proof that any soccer mom cries (although why wouldn't she?) or drinks pink champagne (again, why not?) or cries into her pink champagne (a perfect substitute for a 50-minute therapy session). I'm assuming they do because that's what I want to do since I've been driving all over creation since June 30 when my husband broke his right foot and I am now the sole driver in our family. I have been driving everyone everywhere and it is mind-numbing and I now hate driving, something which I used to love to do.
I've read all sorts of articles in the last five or so years about how our lives as Americans have gotten more intense, we have horrible commutes, crazy work hours, etc. And there is always the question, why? Why are we allowing all this insanity to occur? Why do we choose to work the hours we work and have the demands we have? Yes, yes super-power-awesomeness I know I know. I realize also that the stress and insanity varies geographically, but I am speaking directly to all those areas of our great country where this insanity does exist: why the hell do we drive children all over the place?! When did we shift from a society where children had fun in their neighborhoods to a society where legions of parents chauffeur their children to soccer, fencing, swimming, ballet, or whatever? And why the hell am I doing this?! I do not remember signing up for this!
But the crazy-making party is that I so very much want to drive my kids to these activities. I don't want them to miss out on anything. I want them to relish, learn, and thrive. But there's a limit, right? I cannot do all of that at the expense of my mental health, or (and more importantly) at the expense of their overall health.
I always knew I would have kids and I always knew I would cart them around to sporting/arts/cultural events. I had this fantasy of being on the sidelines watching, reading, writing, getting work done. But for the most part, it doesn't work out that way. There are interruptions. There are long stretches of time where you just want to watch your children.
And since my husband's injury, it has struck me even more that we need to spend less time on the road. We need to choose wisely where we are going, what we are doing, and determine exactly what our priorities are. This may seem obvious, but the thrill of having a kid and doing all this great stuff...well, let's just say it's pretty heady and before you know it, you are seriously overbooked and you are driving all the time.
And when crappy stuff like foot injuries happen? That's the "in sickness and in health" part. You have to gather your inner resources and find time to make yourself feel good because you (as the soccer mom/caretaker) are taking care of everyone in your family. So, for example, no one gets out of the house in the morning until I've put my makeup on. I am the driver: you need to get to an appointment? You need to wait until my mascara is on.
This has not been our best summer; Eric's injury has been exhausting for all of us. We didn't think to explain to our children that the giant boot on his right foot was temporary until our 6-year-old daughter flatly stated that his foot was never going to get better. Did you just hear my heart breaking? I wanted to buy her a pony on the spot. It is going to get better and I will have a co-pilot once again, and little girl will have a dad who plays soccer with her. It will be fine. But -- trust me -- I will be crying plenty into my pink champagne until then.
And my pink champagne of choice? Veuve Clicquot. Hashtag YUM. And for everyday use: Balducci's Rosato Spumante -- not too shabby!
Happy sipping all!