Come play in my world for awhile!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Forever young

I've noticed a change over the last couple years, and for once I'm not talking about my less than perky breasts or the fact I affectionately refer to the loose skin on my twin-stretched stomach as my third boob. When I first had kids I was the fun mom. I genuinely liked to play monster and hide-and-go-seek and wrestle with the kids. I liked to chase them, not in Target, of course, when they've disappeared into the clothes racks, but around the backyard. I remember times when I'd play tag until I would collapse in the grass out of breath only to be buried under a pile of breathless, sweaty kids.

I'm not sure when the shift occurred. It was definitely subtle, but I've noticed the kids don't ask me to do these things much anymore. Yes, they're older but I know they still like it. That's not the reason. I think they've stopped asking because they know I don't say yes anymore. Somewhere along the way I got tired. Instead of enjoying the play I started going through the motions. And I know my kids can tell when I don't have my heart in it.


I've been thinking about this quite a bit. How do I get the energy and playfulness back? Part of it is that I'm older. I'm tired. I may be a kid at heart, but I don't act that way as much anymore. So now what? I've identified the problem, but how do I get the magic back?

***

Today it was a whopping 60 degrees. It was a huge bummer because Saturday was in the 80's and beautiful pool weather. The kids woke up and they wanted a repeat, but instead they got rainy and chilly. They asked if they could swim. I checked the pool temp and it was definitely on the cool end of reasonable. I told them to have fun and followed my instruction with a mental eye roll. Who swims when it's 60 degrees outside?!

I watched them leap into the pool and splash around. I reminded them to keep swimming. As long as they kept swimming they'd be fine. I remembered when I was a kid and the grown-ups would be huddled in their sweatshirts laughing and shaking their heads at the foolishness of youth. I remember laughing right back at them, too, because they were the ones missing the fun and they didn't even know it.

I don't strive to be a fool, but the foolishness of youth isn't always a bad thing. I ran upstairs to get my bathing suit as fast as I could. I had to go quickly before common sense got the better of me.

Hubby was laughing as I tested the water and dove straight in.

My face looked like this when I surfaced.


I only stayed in for about half an hour, but the kids looked like this.



I still haven't figured out the answers... How do I get the spark back? Under what rock is my playful-self hiding? And what in the heck do I have to do to get my stomach to flatten back out?

But I do know I felt a lot better after that swim today.

52 comments:

Cairo Typ0 said...

I think it is so cool that you have a slide in your pool!! Slide down that backwards once a day and you'll defintely find your silly again! :)

Susie said...

I don't know where mine went either:-( It looks like yours is in the pool!

Suzy said...

My friend Dave was dealing with his 16 yr old son about a dating issue and the kid was lying and Dave kknew it. Finally Dave said to him, "I've BEEN 16 but you haven't been 50 so just trust me on this advice."

Then he called his own parents and apologized for his youth.

We age, we get tired. It's our minds that can't get over the hump. Our bodies have already given up! I'm exhausted all the time.

ck said...

Saying "yes" makes me feel better too. I really need to do it more often.

ScoMan said...

I was never fun, so I don't know how to get your fun self back.

From an early age I'd rather sit around and listen to the grown ups talking about whatever than go playing with kids.

Megryansmom said...

1st off, clean your spare room I'm your new best friend now! What an awesome pool.

In order to get your spark back you have to cut out carbs and processed food, not an easy task, since it leaves very little to eat. You eventually ended up starving to near death and going back to the carbs and gaining back the 20 lbs it was so hard to lose, then bitching about how much better you felt when you were thinner. Aging is such a douche bag!

Laoch of Chicago said...

The only way is relentless and consistent exercise I am sad to say. : (

Undercover-Princess said...

You do it just like you did it to get in the pool. THROW YOURSELF IN! today's actions become tomorrow's memories...great now I sound like a fortune cookie.

Tammy Howard said...

Wow, that looks like so much fun!
Fun that I would have totally missed out on, because I would have never done it, so HUGE kudos to you!

TKW said...

I love your face! This is a terrific post. I need some mommy magical mojo regeneration also. And forget your stomach, it's hopeless. Just make friends with that third boob!

Juls said...

Kathy B!, I love your posts so much. Good for you jumping in that pool. Embrace the 3rd boob... you earned it. :)

Lindy said...

You are my hero.

1. You RAN up the stairs.
2. You PUT your bathing suit on.
3. You LET your husband take a picture.
4. You survived.
5. You did it for your kids.

That's awesome!

peewee said...

Your face is PRICELESS in that pic!! HAHA! Now THAT is sacrifice for your kids. Did u have fun though?

Lisa (Jonny's Mommy) said...

One step at a time, I think. Some days you won't feel as playful. Other days you will. Let your kids pull you through your youth again. It's hard to do, but if you can look past all the responsibilities we have as adults, at least a bit at time, then you will feel better, I'm sure. I've found myself, with only one kid, getting lazy and tired. I can't imagine what it would be like with more. It has to be a challenge. I say just do the best you can and take a day or two a week that is just for having fun!

WhisperingWriter said...

Haha, great pictures.

How do you get the spark back? Caffeine. And lots of it.

Hillbilly Duhn said...

I noticed that my spark also left. I don't know when it did, or where to find it again, but I know that it's missing. I wish I could find mine again as well. I feel like a chump, or not like myself...

If you find it before me, let me know which rock it was lying under...

the ungourmet said...

My daughter is crazy like this! She is never cold when she swims! In order for me to enjoy swimming the water has to be almost bath temperature. Hi, my name is Kim and I am a wimp!

As for the sags and bags, I think there are great suits made for this exact thing. When I swim now I always wear board shorts to hide my lovely veiny legs!

Happy Monday!

Tsquared417 said...

Gosh, Kathy, I'm right there with you. I feel like I...

A.) don't have the energy anymore
B.) don't want to

What's up with that? I've been trying to make myself even if I don't feel like it...kind of like you with the pool. :) Thanks for letting me know i'm not the only one!!

Jenny Penny said...

It's the weather. I blame the weather. But really, it's always something, isn't it? Great post. The thought of jumping into a pool does sound exhilirating right now. If only the weather didn't suck so bad. See? It's the weather. I blame the weather. (Talking in circles doesn't help either.)

D said...

I think just taking the first step is the key. It will lead to so much more.

Meg said...

Swimming on Sunday? Are you guys crazy? (I probably would have done the same thing.)

Queenie Jeannie said...

I definitely understand where you are coming from!! I had so much more energy for my first two kids and feel guilty I'm not the same Mom I was then. But then again, I'm wiser and more experienced now too, so that has to count for something, right??

I'm proud of you for "diving in" so to speak!

msprimadonna67 said...

That IS the answer--just dive right in! Of course, sometimes laundry calls, or the dishes, or even (gasp!) a nap. But as long as you make a conscious decision to jump in feet-first sometimes, well then you get to retain that youthful and playful outlook. As for the flat tummy, if you discover the secret to THAT one, please pass on your wisdom.

Gibby said...

I find myself saying no a lot, too. I am trying so hard to use the word "yes" more often. Although, I am not sure I would jump into a really cold pool. I don't think that is in the Mean Mommy Club bylaws...

Love the pics! And I, for one, think you sound like a really fun mom.

Hello Anon Mom!

Yaya said...

Okay, getting your spark back I can help you with. The stomach on the other hand, please look at it as your war-wound for being so blessed to be able to have kids. Don't think of it as a bad thing, it really is wonderful that your body was able to do that.

Okay, getting some spunk back in life. I do yoga and acupuncture and go running. These all keep me energized. Seriously, acupuncture does wonders for me. I know, so many people say 'ew, needles, no way', but until you try it you have no idea how great it can be.

And as for saying no. I'm a nanny. I can be grumpy on some days. So I try to live by a rule. When a kid asks me to do something, play something, etc, I instinctually will say "no" sometimes. I don't know why, I just do. So I try to immediately analyze myself and think, 'wait, why am I saying no? Did I really mean no??' and more often then not I say 'you know what? Yes!'

Ryan Ashley Scott said...

I love these thoughtful posts of yours. We should all be so lucky as to find our "playful selves" more often. When does it happen... when does that self start to hide? Your kids look so happy in the last picture. It seems like sometimes, remembering to look for that old self is enough to bring a tiny spark back. Thanks for a beautiful reminder.

Kristina P. said...

That picture of you is priceless! Haha! I only wish your top had come off.

Grand Pooba said...

That is awesome! I love your face comint out of the water. Maybe that's how you get back to having that spark, just jump right in!

K said...

I think jumping right in is a great start!

Good luck.

Bunnylord said...

I recommend heavy drinking as a solution to all your worries.

rsteele said...

In the wise words of Rod Serling... "kick the can,kick the can" In other words instigate the play, or except decrepitude:>

passionsandsoapboxes.com said...

see I'm so decrepit already I put in the wrong user name. My days of kick the can are over and I am not to sorry about that.

The Blonde Duck said...

Pie of course! Lots of pie!

Kate said...

Great idea to jump right in before you change your mind. I also have this problem, there was a day last year that I had a wild hair and got out squirt guns and ran through the sprinklers with my kids. It was a lot of fun but why don't we do it more often. Good luck.

Ginger said...

Good for you for jumping in! I call that "being tired" thing, being a codger. I am one. Or I am becoming one. And I think you're right. We are tired! I suppose the only way to get "untired" is by doing.

(sigh)

faemom said...

You're awesome! I want to be just like you. Speaking of which, I have to figure out if I HAVE a swimsuit and go swimming in salute of you.

TentCamper said...

Dang....I wish I had a pool!!! That looks so fun.

Congrats on the Hot Mama status!!!

Missy said...

You've got the mojo going with the kids! You made it 30 minutes in that cold water? You are a Supermom! The kids are having a blast! How do they stand the cold water? My mother swears that we did that as children, but I am thinking she is delirious!

zelzee said...

Kathy.........do not put so much focus on getting things done and having everything perfect. I know they are important, but as the kids get older they are doing alot more activities, and you are still trying to maintain everything like you did when they were little.

Put some stuff on the back burner. It will still be there when you are ready.

Overload makes you very weary, and can put you in a real funk that's hard to get out of.

Do more jumping in the pool!!!

Jen said...

I totally get this. It was the same epiphany that I had the other day. But I don't know why it has to come and go like that.

Pop and Ice said...

You are a brave soul, testing out the waters in that temp! I see your new photo! From redhead to brunette? Or am I remembering it incorrectly? At any rate, you look quite impish in the new photo!

happeegrrrl said...

What's the Hot Mama status?!

Sara @ Domestically Challenged said...

I agree. Throw in 2 full time working parents, dinner, housework and BOOM! It hits. Let me know what you find out!

CynthiaK said...

When you find out the answer, do let me know! I've been in the same boat.

60 degrees? At least it wasn't snowing like it was here on our vacation! Jakers!! Of course, it wasn't enough snow to warrant a roll out in it during one of our sauna moments...

Semi-Slacker Mom said...

Honey! I was just thinking the same thing! I think I'm having late-onset postpartum depression! I think I'm going to try to find a babysitter to move in this summer!

for a different kind of girl said...

I'm dismayed to see that there are several opinions that mention consistent exercise is the key. That seems like even more work! Sigh...

Though, seriously, I am inclined to be more willing to respond 'yes' faster when the kids want me to jump in and get involved with something they're doing if I'm being active and taking care of myself. Essentially taking time for Me to give time to THEM. Also, honestly, that's something I need to jump on the bandwagon and really, really, really start doing again. I'm a far, far happier person when I do.

forever folding laundry said...

Good for you for taking the plunge! I'm sure the girls loved it!

(By the way, I'm heading to the post office tomorrow!)

~Keri

evenshine said...

LOVE THE FACE!!! Go KB!

Paging Doctor Mommy said...

You are AWESOME!

LadyFi said...

Wow! My kids and I want to move in with you. I promise to let them eat ketchup with everything!

I think you have found the secret to getting back that magic... just go and DO things with your kids. Smile and laugh, and in no time, you will be playing for real and not just pretending.

Bee and Rose said...

I have been feeling the same way lately. It's a challenge at 43 to raise kids under 12! lol! But you are right! It's time to re-ignite the spark and your pool party looks like a fine start!

i am the diva said...

i haven't been here is a while due to the vomitypoop disease that ran through our house last week. but i'm back now.

I'm glad you got in the pool.