Wednesday, February 17, 2010

My commitment

In our kitchen is a framed photo that was signed by a bunch of our friends on the night of our engagement party. I'm not sure why, but lately every time I pass it I focus on a note in the upper right hand corner. It says, "Don't forget to have fun."

At the time, that little note seemed so funny. I mean seriously, Ben and I? We were the epitome of fun. We could have been the King and Queen of the Fun Prom if there were such a thing. I mean, okay, its not like I ever removed my panties and danced on a bar, so maybe I'm not THAT fun, but we still had a few good laughs every day we spent together.

And while it seems amazing that it is even possible, I think Ben and I have forgotten to have fun lately. Ending each day exhausted, stressed and thanks to our little germ factory, sick, we often can't work up enough energy to talk to each other, let alone do something FUN. In fact, I noticed the other night that more often than not, after Kate is down we spend time on the sofa on our respective iPhones doing something social with other people (Facebook, Twitter, Words with Friends) rather than interacting with each other.

We used to have so much fun together. We were always going out with friends, playing Wii or a board game, going for a jog or playing tennis. Then I got pregnant and was always tired. We both became stressed about work and life decisions. To work or not to work. What to do next in life. Feeling the pressure of supporting an entire family on just one income. It all become a lot.

Now, don't get me wrong, we still have fun. We just have to work harder at it than we used to, and sometimes it just feels like a bit too much.

This past weekend, Texas experienced an unprecedented snowfall. While the rest of the country may be tired of the white stuff making life miserable, we were ecstatic. The city shut down on Friday and Ben and I both worked from home with a fire in the fireplace, hot coffee in our cups and Kate playing on the floor. When Kate went down for her nap, I talked Ben into taking a work break and going outside to build a snowman with me. I used the excuse that I wanted Kate to have one to take photos with, but truly I wanted to recapture some of our old selves. We pulled on our warmest sweatshirts and found gardening gloves in the garage (yes, we don't own snow gloves... we live in TEXAS for God's sake). And we went outside and built a damn good snowman.
And it was fun. We threw snow at each other, we borrowed a carrot and coal from a neighbor, gave another neighbor tips on rolling snow and ended up with the biggest (and best dressed) snowman on our block. After Kate woke up we took some photos with the snowman to commemorate the day it snowed in Dallas.

My heart was full. And I knew that I wanted to recreate it by taking steps to be more active, more aware and more PRESENT in my day-to-day life with my amazing family. I am so blessed, and so in love with the life I've been given. And I know that it is up to me to take advantage of every single moment, every single second and treasure it.

And for that reason, today I made the commitment to give up my social networks for Lent. I will no longer rock Kate to sleep while reading updates on Facebook. I will talk to my spouse instead of Tweeting the things I'm thinking. I will create opportunities for cherished memories with people I love, instead of interacting with people I sort of know. That is my commitment. I can't wait to get started.
Seriously, we only had mini-carrots so we had to borrow a nose-size carrot from our neighbor. The hat, mine. Pretty sweet right? I bought it about a year ago and quickly realized it was a mistake when Ben mocked me relentlessly. I never wore it in public. Glad Frosty got to rock it.Ben is 6'7" at least. So this snowman is nearly 7 feet tall. Yes, I give you permission to be amazed. Ben nearly threw his back out getting the middle lifted into place.

Kate is just confused by all the white stuff. I also think she may remember the incident where we sat her in snow for a photo opp during Christmas, without gloves or ski pants, so she is a bit wary of what is going to happen next.But when standing, with gloves and shoes on... yeah, this white stuff is kind of cool.


Rachael said...

This is a really great post. :) My hubby and I are pregnant with our first, and I've been struggling trying to figure out how to be the "me" that I know... without work anymore, and with all the ridiculous hormones and tiredness wearing me down. It's even more difficult trying to figure out how to still be "us" when I hardly feel like me. Thanks for sharing this, it's always nice to be able to relate to someone going through the same thing. :)

Anonymous said...

Love it!

Screwed Up Texan said...

I think your Lent decision is a great one! Good luck! You just gave me an idea for a weekly challenge I'd like to do and share with my husband. Thanks for writing this!