as we like to say, time spent on vacation with our good ole friends is "a forced march through paradise!" we have the best times together. there are always lots of choices when we spend time together. we love them....they love us. so they say! we have spent some of the most precious summers of our lives with them.....we have spent many fun filled vacations with them....we have spent weekends upon weekends with them.....we have celebrated many birthdays of our children together....we have spent some of our greatest family times with them.....our children have grown up side by side through the years.....we have lived through lots of family events.....we have shared in joys and sorrows......we have been through the biggest of big..........playgroup!
after spending any amount of time with them, we leave with some of our greatest memories yet, WE ARE EXHAUSTED! thankfully, for us, our friends are more of the "type a" variety, while my husband and i are more of the "type b" and sometimes a "type x, y or z"! however, we get things done, we don't seem to have the planning and forethought as our "type a" friends. we like to get the most out of a day......but they can do more, more, more!
when we are with them.....we laugh about our forced march through paradise. we tease them. just as we are about to put our feet up, it's time to put our shoes on. just as we are about to kick back, we get kicked in the butts. just as we about to lay low, we are shot to the moon.........and we love it....every exhausted second of the march!
since we've had kids, our style has changed. when we had new babies, i tried to maintain my busy lifestyle.....i was able to keep that going for a good, long time. i lived, all dressed up, having places to go, people to meet. i even had the car and carseats, baby "pack and plays", back packs, strollers, jog strollers and bike carts to get us there......while still maintaining my talbots matching belt buckles, hair bands and shoes.
it was when we lived up near boston, that i caught on. i was in the museum of fine arts in boston, with a nineteen month old baby girl in a double, peg perego stroller and a three month old baby, t.j., being held close to nurse. that was not the problem.....that was easy....i probably could have managed a lot more......like, a pet monkey and a baby chimp.....as long as they were strapped into a stroller with a snack! my three month old was certainly able to eat on the go, with no problem, at his drive through window,,,,,me! my nineteen month old, grace, was buckled into her super stroller!
life was good as we sat in the fine arts gallery, echoing our happy sounds, as people pondered the beauty of all that surrounded us! most important, in stuffy, old boston, i had my personal food mart breast covered well by one of the cute cotton blankets that my new baby boy had recieved as a gift. incognito.....even his big sister, at nineteen months, thought he had "ho-mu-la", otherwise known as formula.
all was well in my world....my life was full. this stay at home mother thing was just great. i didn't have to stay home all day.....eating bonbons and cleaning spit up! i was able to get up, get everyone dressed. coordinated, of course. when i mentioned that i coordinated our clothing, my mom said, "well, why not? you]'re the one who has to look at them all day!" she seemed to think that was normal....after all, we did want to always be our best, didn't we? and look our best? of course. as long as we all looked good were able to keep up an active life like i had before children, life must be great! look at me! i can do it all!......kinda!
that was then......way back then. and that day, the boston museum of fine arts security guard approached me.......that man changed my whole life....and the lives of our children and my husband! what could a security possibly have done to change my life, you ask? i wasn't plotting or planning a heist. i didn't even have room in our 800 square foot condo to hang a poster from that museum, muchless an actual oil painting from the impressionest period. he quietly stepped over to our little snack stand, where i was sitting on a bench. he quietly, as only a museum security guard can mutter, "there is no eating in the gallery m'am." .......eating? "we are not eating", i whispered. t.j. was covered. the guard, serious and sobering, stated that "the child is dispensing cereal." yes, that's true, i told him. "my baby has a few cheerios........but, that's not food sir!"......."that's survival", i insisted. he chose to differ. we put away the visible cheerios and after our food fest, we took some time to educate my budding geniuses while strolling through the remainder of the gallery.....walked to the car and drove home.
that's not the end of my story.....i spoke to my mom that night. she asked me her ususal question......"what did you do today?"......i told of my adventures. we laughed. i described my indignant response to the security guard. i hung up the phone. when i kissed my babies that night, i realized that i had not taken them to the museum to educate them...haha....but, i had gone to the museum to prove to myself that i could still do anything i wanted....even if one itty, bitty baby, who did not care where he was, as long as he had me at his disposal, did not care about fine art.......and neither did my nineteen month old baby girl.......although a perfectly intellectual little lady! i realized i had taken them to that museum so that i would have an answer for my sweet mom.....the mom who had asked, for my whole life, "what did you do today?"
actually, it was then that i realized, my little babies did not care where we had been. they really only cared if they were fed and clean and had some loving attention. and that's what matters. everyday. everwhere. anyhow. any way.
so, finally, i realized it was the, "how are you?" that really mattered......not so much the "what did you do today?"......as long as we were all happy and healthy and living well.....for us!
that security guard changed everything. i slowly but surely began to prioritize, for me, what mattered. i stepped away from a few "foofy doo doo" clubs, as my good friend called one of my womens organizations! that security man made me realize that some of the "Foofoodoodoo" clubs really didn't matter to me, my husband or our babies! and our lives got better and better, for us.
oh, we sure did alot....like baby ice skating.....with our little babies on the ice as soon as they could walk, maybe not even talk yet! we walked miles with our double jog stroller, we met everyone in the world on our walks.....the mailman, the u.p.s. man, the neighbors, the store owners, the barber, the police, the fire fighters, the community.
we also prioritized our friendships. we spent more time with people who really made us all happy....people we all had a great time! life just got better and better!
and that's when our "type a" friends became really good friends with us.....we had slowed down....we actually had more time to spend....."quality time", as it became known, in the nineties.......we let go of some of the social groups that we found boring and phoney baloney and frankly, "foofoodoodoo"!
so, as we changed, our lives changed. as our lives changed, we changed.....all for the better. and because we are more likely to be tagged, "type b.....type x, y, z", by our great friends......it's o.k........because, even though it's possible to make them crazy on occasion......we are not likely to go head to head trying to control andy situations......even paradise! because of that security guard, back in 1996, we can be in paradise and enjoy any forced march we are exposed to......especially with friends. sometimes, for us, it's great to have friends push us through paradise! because, with some friends, we don't even have to be in paradise to have fun! thankfully!