Sunday, February 26, 2006

mediocrity

Sunday morning, 11:50 am.

I slept late this morning, awoke to the sound of bacon frying. No, DH doesn't make bacon for everyone, just him. The smell of the bacon grease is nauseating to me, so it's not a pleasant way to wake up. He does this almost every morning. (I can eat bacon prepared in a microwave, it doesn't have that nasty thick smell.)

Last night and this morning I've been in a contemplative mood. I watched The Color Purple last night. That movie makes me bawl every time I watch it -- and I've seen it probably 30 times. After the movie was over, I called my sister and thanked her for being so wonderful. My son watched a few minutes of the movie and kept asking so many questions that it actually started to annoy me. He wanted to know what happened in the end. I said the movie is not just about the end, although it is a good ending. I explained that he would need to watch the whole movie from start to finish to get the feeling -- it's an experience, not entertainment. Okay, at least for me it is.

That movie makes me think of mediocrity in my life. I feel like a prisoner sometimes. I always have. Mostly my life is about mediocrity. I play the bored housewife role only too well. The one aspect that raises my life above mediocrity is my son. I parent very well, I love very well. I try to nourish his brain and emotions. He brings me great joy. After my deep thoughts last night I decided that the mediocrity aspect of my life was a perfect example of bad parenting. My son knows I get bored easily, he knows that I hide out in the house. He knows I have dreams and desires that I never even attempt to fulfill. What kind of example am I setting for him by being this way? Not very good.

Lots of food for thought on a Sunday morning.

This morning I've also been thinking about our past school week. It was fantastic. My son was really "on" and did some great work and learning. His attitude was pretty good, too. We started Real Science 4 Kids Biology, read the first chapter and did the first experiment in one day (as opposed to the week that it's supposed to take.) When we finished my son said: MORE. This just drove home the point that we need to switch the focus of our school away from history toward science. He has always been a science kid -- I have always hated or been scared of science. Okay, I'll face my fears and fulfill his needs. I don't think this RS4K is going to be a good fit for him in that it doesn't go into things on the level he wants to learn. He wants more.

We attempted the chemistry earlier this year. I had to stop. I didn't get it. I'm going to have to start studying chemistry so I can teach it. RS4K is not elementary enough for me. Ah, those memories of being completely lost in high school honor's chemistry are coming back to bite me in the butt. How I got a C in that class is beyond me. I think my teacher took pity upon me because I went to his classroom after school every day and worked hard, though never understanding what I was doing. I think the C was for effort, not understanding.

Back to my contemplating: Why is it that if we have a really good school week, everything else is mediocre or dismal. School was great which means my house is not. Why can't I have both? My kitchen looks like a tornado went through it. I've got bills stacked to pay, checks to order, checkbook to balance, library books to return, a telephone line to get fixed, a broken car window motor to fix, a house to clean, menus to plan, groceries to buy, prescriptions to fill, sheets to change, laundry to wash, floors to vacuum and scrub, etc. Why can't I "do" both and do them well?

I think I know the answer. I expect better from school -- I put my son first. I accept mediocrity with the rest of my life. It's okay that there are dirty dishes in the sink, they'll get done -- that is my attitude about "the household" aspect of my life. That's not teaching my son well. I'm accepting responsibility here: the mediocrity is my fault -- it's bad attitude.

Aim not for perfection. Perfection is a dirty word in my house. Strive for balance, strive for excellence -- not perfection.

As Dr. Phil says (I don't care for Dr. Phil but my sister quotes him all the time) "GET IN THE GAME." Okay, mom, get in the game. Expect better of myself. Do not accept mediocrity.

That is a good lesson for my son to learn, a good example for me to set.

So I'm logging off and am going to go clean the house now. Get in the game, mom -- Just Do It.

8 comments:

contemplator said...

This was a wonderful post. It reminds me of my son singing part of a rap song he likes "Gotta gi-gi-gi-git my head in the game, gotta gi-gi-gi-git my head in the game," LOL. I fully understand mediocrity.

One of my biggest fears in life was that I would "fail" and have to settle for being mediocre. So it kept me from doing things because I didn't want to take the chance that I'd "find out" I wanted so much more, but could only settle for being mediocre, know what I mean? I'm trying to make up for that now by simply doing things.

It's a theory I'm testing. Know how when you're super busy stuff just gets done and you look back on it and think "How did I do all of that?" But the truth is you knew you only had 30 minutes to do something and so you made darn sure it got done then. I'm loading myself up gradually with stuff to do on the premise that a body in motion truly does stay in motion.

But I totally get how we give excellence to others but don't expect it for our own things.

Almost Lazarus said...

February is a burn out month. Look around - everyone is feeling it. School burnout, mundane chore burn out, even blog burn out. I have like, 100 blogs on my blog roll, and it's rare to have even 3 people leave a new post on their blogs. It used to take me a good hour to go through new posts on my favorite blogs.

March is a month of rebirth, baby animals, new flowers, green grass. Easier to motivate.

Mommy Mare said...

Your mediocrity post was just so "on". I just posted my own mediocre post on my blog.

I think Butch has something with the burnout thing.

Frankie said...

I know February is a bad month. In fact, last year the entire spring was bad for me.

Personally, this really does go deeper than spring. It is a constant in my life. I think I may have ADD. I look at my private journal years back and it is always the same...I put one thing as a priority and the rest I accept mediocrity. Before DS, it career was priority. Now DS is.

We took the majority of the week before last off because I just couldn't do school. That week I did nothing and it was a luxury. I think that's partly why we had such a fantastic school week this past week because I really felt renewed. I notice I didn't blog much, though.

mull-berry said...

I think you are entering a new stage of motherhood ... your son is older and can do a lot of things for himself compared to what he could do when he was two and three. I'm there, too ... more time on my hands but not really ... I still need to be here and I want to be here ... but there isn't a lot to do. I'm still trying to find something to fill that void. I worked so hard until I became a SHM and am trying to make the most of it. I plan to work when they are gone, so I need to read what I want to read, etc. Regardless of all that, it is boring!

P.S. "Mediocrity my foot ... you have hits from Hong Kong and New Zealand! I got a site meter after you did ... it's fun!

Frankie said...

Mull-berry - I'm so glad you posted about the site meter, I didn't realize I was so "exposed." lol

The site meter is fun, but I didn't realize it was public! (Shame on me for not paying attention and reading the fine print.) I think I have it on private now. Sorry.

The New Zealand visitor is a "regular" and I wish he/she would say hi sometime.

And yes, it is a new stage of motherhood. But that mediocroty problem has been one that I've suffered with my whole life. I think I am at the stage where I am finally recognizing it for what it is.

Maybe you can teach an old dog new tricks -- at least I hope so, if I ever stop learning I think I'd die of boredom.

I don't know what I want to be when I grow up -- er, when DS grows up. My hearing is gone so I can't do what I used to, nor do I want to. I'm not ready to think about that right now. ;-)

Addie said...

btw ... your link to me doesn't seem to work. :(

Becky said...

Honey, you're not supposed to be thinking such heavy thoughts on a Sunday of all days! Give your brain a rest lol, and don't be so hard on yourself.

I think we (that's women we) can have a distorted image not just about our bodies -- seeing them as heavier than they are, even when we might be a little, ahem, chunky -- but our abilities as well.

It was fun to read the clean house post after reading this one : ) -- so much for mediocrity!