8 hours ago
Thursday, January 15, 2009
Tonight, one of the local CBMC leaders (who happens to be my brother's father-in-law--does that make sense?? He's Su-Su's dad) planned a dinner party for T's small group at the country club. Business casual, no big deal. We drove up the dark, tree-lined road to the country club and then walked (very) briskly from the parking lot up to the club.
Turns out we were the youngest couple there by several years and a lot of gray hair. That really wasn't a problem...I'm pretty good at small talk with just about anyone, but sometimes it is easier to connect with a person who has also spent her day washing sippy cups and keeping their one year old from drowning herself in the toilet. There was definitely not that connection there last night. Over salads, the CBMC leader asked us to go around the table and tell a little about ourselves, since none of the wives have ever met. I braced myself for an onslaught of insecurity. Sure enough, it flared right up.
The first wife is an actual doctor. She has elementary school-aged twins, and she runs a whole pediatrician's office. My current office location is the laptop here on the kitchen table, and there is a Disney Princesses place mat directly across from me. I think the ambiance is enhanced by the dried up milk on Michaela Byrd's high chair tray.
The second wife is a registered nurse. She also has two older children, has worked in the PICU, NICU, and currently works for a heart association. She runs marathons (for fun??!) and is planning a trip to Big Sur soon. I am planning a trip to Wal-Mart today for diapers before I travel to the metropolis of Richmond to pick my sister up from the airport.
The third wife I had more in common with, as she is a teacher (I was a teacher's assistant for a semester after I graduated college). She has high school and college aged kids, and her husband manages just about every radio station in the area. Big bucks. I manage my team of myself for the Steering Team newsletter committee for my MOPS group. They're a traveling family as well. They like to take Thanksgiving vacations to places like London, San Fransisco, and Turkey (get it?? Turkey for Turkey Day...haha). The last two big vacations T and I went on, we came home to find out a few weeks later that I was pregnant. I don't think we'll be going anywhere any time soon. The last wife manages a local Halmark store and has four grown children--overachiever!
So I sat at the table, feeling like a great big loser--literally...these ladies run marathons. The only place I run is down the clearance aisle at Target. Several of them clearly have some heavy-duty college and graduate degrees. I didn't even really use my B.A. when I was working at my pitiful little job before the kids came along. So when it was my turn to speak, I decided to just be honest.
"I have a six-figure book deal." I said. "And on my way to the spa every morning, I oversee the maid and the nanny while they care for my house and children. My girls never whine or cry, and they always eat their broccoli."
"I volunteer my summers reading to blind orphans in Guatemala. In Spanish." I continued. "And I am currently having our home redecorated by Nate Berkus."
Okay, not really. I just sort of filled in the gaps that T left when he introduced us. Everyone smiled politely, and even nodded in recognition when I mentioned my MOPS group, but I couldn't help but wonder if they were all thinking, "My goodness, what a loser."
I know I'm supposed to be cherishing these years I have at home with my girls, and that is something I am working on. Enjoying the little moments I have with them, instead of sitting in the middle of a pile of toys wishing I was sitting on a beach on Paradise Island. But when I think about my accomplishments, putting together a newsletter that maybe three people read or folding a load of laundry just doesn't match up to nursing sick people in the remote areas of Uruguay.
I sometimes wonder what life has in store for me when my children are all in school. Will I find another dead-end job that I suffer through? Or will I finally find my passion and excel at something? We'll see....
Posted by Amanda @ Serenity Now at 9:35 PM