Monday, April 03, 2006

Super Mom ~ Super Dad

What a day. It's amazing how our family's many different roles, priorities, and responsibilities somehow manage to fit into place, or at least stick together as we roll along. This morning I headed for the office to prepare for an evening Volunteer orientation. Beo called to tell me he was taking the kids to the farm store to get his pea innoculant (of course--what else would he be doing?). I stayed at work an hour longer than I'd intended, tying up loose ends. When I came home, Beo had managed to hold lunch for me. Leftover "Chick'n" alfredo and steamed green peas. He'd made the kids quesadillas, with shredded carrot cleverly hidden among the shreds of cheddar cheese. Who could ask for anything more? After the kids went into their "quiet time" mode, Beo went out to innoculate his peas and "walk the back 40" (approximately the last 20 feet of the back yard). I finished up some work, then he came inside so I could go for a half hour jog.

I have been enjoying my "running" more since I started listening to "This American Life" on my iPod. I can't believe how much better I can run now than when I first started. In the beginning, I would try to make it to the next lamp post running, then walk the next one, etc. (These are country lamp posts mind you.) Now I can run 3-4 before walking one and picking the pace back up. On a beautiful day it just feels so amazing to work out your body and muscles that way. I love my tae bo videos, but going for a run in the countryside around our house is a whole different animal.

Once I was back, Beo was back out poking around in his garden. Sprout woke up in a great mood, asked for an apple, and sat down for PBS prime time. I started making a kale and potato stew. When Beo came in I had peeled everything, but that was as far as we'd gotten. He gently suggested a simpler dinner, and after packing the peeled veggies away we started our super-pot on fusilli pasta and steamed broccoli. Beo finished that up while I got ready for my orientation. We managed a quick dinner together, and I went to dash out the door but noticed that the dog had mistaken Bird's carpet for the backyard, so...long story short I was almost late for my orientation! 2.5 hours later I was back home, we put the kids to bed together, and voila, we'd made it through another parenting day. Worked on our blogs together while Beo finished up his bread baking for the day, and now it's bed time.

I truly understand now what my parents meant when they always talked about "tag-team parenting". It can be stressful at times, but I just can't imagine it any other way. Sure, on the days that I get an hour or two to myself, it's a nice break, but those hectic 5 minute spurts that we have together in-between our next designated tasks are absolutely priceless. I feel proud that Beo and I have managed not only to survive this with our marriage intact, but to actually make our marriage stronger. I think that one thing we've learned is how important it is to take time not just for us but for ourselves individually. It is definitely a daily balancing act, but I think we're doing a bang-up job, and I wouldn't trade it for anything.

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