Odd choice for a title, no? Why it never occurred to me that I'd need to pick a blog title, I don't know. I was pretty sure there was some kind of auto title thingie. You know, like when you're signing up for an email account and your ISP offers you some suggestions (lastname69). Maybe. But no, and at 9 p.m., when my mind is likely at it's lowest level of functioning, I must come up with some catchy, witty, title that hasn't been taken. Ugh.
So, I'm sitting here typing with a ginormous paper cut on my finger, causing me great pain as I type. And I have a hole in the sole of my foot because, like an ass, I tried to dig out a potentially imaginary foreign object from my foot with a safety pin. I'm pretty sure that whatever I thought was there wasn't there, but now I have a lumpy hole in my foot. It feels great. Kind of like walking on glass. But if you know me IRL, it's no surprise. I'm a spaz. And my discomfort reminded me of a story that sums me up pretty well.
My profession now is stay-at-home mom. It's a hell of a hard job, with pretty poor monetary compensation, but the benefits are better than any job I've ever had. I didn't marry until my early thirties and didn't begin procreating until my mid thirties. My first year out of college I had a roommate situation that didn't work out too splendidly and after about 16 months, I decided I was better off in my own apartment. This necessitated that I keep both jobs I had, and I was working about 60 hours a week. Left me little time to enjoy that apartment. Gift of the Magi? Anyway, my "day job" was preschool teacher. Wonderful job, except that this was preschool in a day care center. So the preschool you think of, with 3 hour sessions, twice a day, was not the preschool of my reality. I worked from 7:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. with same group of said preschoolers. Long day. Our mornings were spent engaged in activities surrounding a particular theme. These themes, of course, were to be preschool appropriate. Shapes, colors, letters, and other odd things that had relevance to a four-year old. One early October, we were gearing up to do a week on the theme of safety. Safety at home, safety on the playground, blah, blah, blah. So how does a preschool teacher prepare for safety week? Bring in a cop, trip to the fire station, a video on stranger awareness. Ah, but that would be so expected. Not when you come to my preschool.
Early that week, I was scheduled to attend a training conference. Just a day thing. I was excited to dress like a grown-up. I was leaving the paint-covered jeans and sweatshirts at home for the day and looking like the college grad I thought I should . I had a nice pair of dress pants and a blouse picked out for the day. This necessitated ironing. Not my favorite activity. And the ironing required advance planning, again not my favorite activity. So here I am the morning of the conference with a wrinkled shirt and a clock ticking away the minutes. I'm going to be late. I know it. But I must iron my lovely grown-up blouse. I begin the tedious task of pressing the wrinkles from my shirt. I reach over to turn the blouse and my arm makes contact with the searing iron. Ow. But the clock is ticking and no time for pain. So I continue to iron, as the inside of my forearm begins to redden, blister slightly, and cause me nothing short of great agony. But I cannot be late, especially in my grown up shirt. So I burn. By midday, I have a nice blistery welt and no amount of cold compresses will help. I'm in agony.
On the way home, I stop at the grocery store to grab a few things for the occasional few minutes I get to spend in my apartment each week. I need O.J. I reach back to grab some OJ on the shelf and as I bring my hand back out, it catches on the metal frame of a sale sign. Continuing the theme of the day, I decide I have no time for this and continue on my way. As I round the corner to the next aisle, I realize that, accompanying the stinging of my finger is a small trail of blood. Yup, my finger is cut, and not just a little. Fortunately, it's not grave enough to need stitches or anything dramatic like that, but it needs several band-aids and it hurts like hell. Any normal person would take the hint, and go home and crash on the couch with the remote. You can't hurt yourself with a remote can you? (I probably could, I once cut myself with a pool cue). But I decide I need to go home and make zucchini bread from the homegrown zucchini a friend has given me. I have never made zucchini bread, but I have a cookbook, I have a loaf pan and I have an oven. I decide the finest grate is necessary. I grip the zucchini and begin grating away on my metal box grater. I am making great progress, pleased with myself, when wham, I slip and my hand slides down the metal box grater, finest grate. I counted the little cuts on my fingers. There were over twenty, actually I think it was close to forty. (And everyone wanted to know what the secret ingredient was that made my zucchini bread so delicious. "A pinch of skin, splash of blood")
So, I showed up for preschool the next day, day one of safety week, with bandages on my arm, bandages on my right hand and bandages on my left. And a lot of stories about how not to be safe. Who needs a firefighter?