The unbearable overwhelmingness of being…

J and I have reached the love/hate point in our relationship.  If a sudden snowstorm strikes and we are stuck here on Tuesday, rather than he on his way to school and me using the bathroom without interruption, I think we will both scream.  Yes, we’ll scream at the weather gods, the sky, each other…  It sounds horrible, I know, but we’re pretty sick of each other by now.

Bad momma.  Bad, bad momma.

Don’t get me wrong, I adore the kid.  I’m pretty sure he’s fond of me, but we’ve pretty much exhausted every venue of togetherness we could come up with, and he’s ready to head back to the social opportunities provided by his classmates.  We’ve had fun, but did YOU enjoy being with YOUR mom 24/7 when you were almost seventeen?  How about me?  Did I ever, in my wildest imaginations, think I’d be hanging out with my nearly seventeen year-old all day, every day, during Xmas vacation?

I know this is a sick fantasy, but there are days when I would love to just stay in bed.  Tell no one…I am ashamed of my sybaritic inclinations on this one.  A dream of a day in pajamas (not with a coffee stain on the front, an ear thermometer in my robe’s pocket, tissue in my hand, mismatched socks,) lounging pleasurably in bed while sipping tea, reading a book (War and Peace seems a lot longer when one reads it in spurts here and there,) maybe painting my nails, taking a nap, stretching like a cat…not because I am sick and I need to stay in bed…just because I want to stay in bed.  Shhh…tell no one I fantasize about this…I’d have to find you all and smack you upside the head for it.

I tried this on Monday.  I had asked for “a morning in bed” as a Christmas present.  WHAT was I thinking?  The whir of the coffee grinder, the in and out of people (on the loudest tiptoes EVER,) the whispered “do you want your coffee now or later?” in my ear.  Let’s just say I crawled out of bed and kept going only to be met with “but why are you UP?”  I’ve always envied people’s ability to arch ONE brow and give a glare…the closest I could come to achieving the look I was going for was holding my eyebrow up with one finger (blocking that eye because twisting my arm behind my back to not obstruct the eye would have been uncomfortable) and shooting arrows from the other eye.  And I wonder why they don’t take my grievances seriously around here…sigh!

J has discovered his athlete’s foot.  In keeping with his obsessive habits, he’s been looking at this foot with fascination.  It’s not gross looking, but he knows it itches, and I suspect he’s trying to “see” the itch.  Fresh socks (from a brand new package) are handed to him whenever his feet are washed, thoroughly dried and the cream is applied, and he looks at his foot as it hides within the confines of the sock, waiting to see if what he’s feeling has an outward manifestation, like little movements under the sock indicating that little creatures are running around causing mayhem on there.  This morning the trend has been one sock and slipper on and one foot completely bare…plus the pant leg on that side gathered up, exposing the ankle and part of his calf.  J looks rather dashing like this…maybe because he’s smiling so broadly?

The last Friday of the year finds us gathering Christmas decorations and getting ready to clean the house from top to bottom.  I like to start the new year with a clear idea of what I need to get done for the next 365 days (366 this time around) and with a clean house.  The blank slate, as it were, must be truly clean so we can write on it…

There is a restlessness to today and tomorrow.  We are recapitulating, assessing, remembering, doffing the vestments of the old year and getting ready to don the new.  Yes, we’re all getting a year older and we’re all getting -hopefully- wiser…and, for some strange reason, this fills me with trepidation.  J, of course, is looking at it in terms of getting a new Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue calendar which I’ve yet to locate at any local store…and we don’t want to start the new year on the wrong foot…on the wrong, bare, athlete’s foot plagued foot…do we?

So, yes, we’re both overwhelmed with the status quo.  I don’t think that my awareness of what would have been an alternate status quo makes my feelings about it any more valid than J’s.  I feel for him because he doesn’t know that, in an alternate set of circumstances, he could be at a friend’s house playing video games, heading to the mall with someone other than us, taking the car and going for a drive, planning a movie date with that cute girl he sees in the hallway between bells…  I’d still be at home, relishing the peace and quiet of choosing what to do next, but J could be Mr. Man-About-Town…if he ever realizes this, he’ll be crushed by the fact that it’s not in the cards for him.

There are THOSE moments, you know, when it’s all ALRIGHT.  Take, for instance, the Great Whoopee Cushion Incident of Tuesday night.  As I sat at my desk, I heard a loud fart.  This was no whoopee cushion fart…this was the real deal.  As I turned to look at the source, already laughing because when you live surrounded by males it becomes a competitive sport and you’re the judge (or running out of the room in horror,) I saw J standing in front of the couch, holding in his hands a flat whoopee cushion.  “J!  What was THAT?!” and my son, my child, my darling boy moved his hands up to show me the whoopee cushion.  At that moment I knew the dog we don’t have would have been blamed.  I said “no, J…THAT was not a whoopee cushion fart.”  And he laughed heartily…

Yes, there are THOSE moment when it’s ALL alright…

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