Wednesday, May 28, 2008

That's Nice

Every day I do a bunch of things that go unnoticed. In fact, my life is such that most of the time there are only comments when one of those things goes undone. No one walks into the house and says, "Golly gosh, thanks a ton for doing all that laundry today". They may, ocassionally, say things like, "Uh, I'm running out of socks".

Now, strictly speaking, I'm not a housewife for the glory. (I'm in it for the stupendous salary). For the last 14 years, I've stayed home because I wanted to and because, thanks to The Spouse's generous income, I could. I stayed home because being around to raise my child and care for the household brought me fulfillment and joy. It also gave me time to pursue my other interests. The fact that I'm not receiving accolades, bouquets and being feted on a daily basis is immaterial. Truth told, I'd have to clean the house and do laundry even if I was the only person living here so really it's not a big deal.

Should The Child thank me every day for being the worst bestest mom ever? Should she be abundantly grateful that I've been around for her? Should The Spouse be eternally grateful that I pay the bills, change the sheets, walk The Dog, dust the piano and put a decent meal on the table 7 nights a week? I get as much out of all that as they do so it's pretty much a wash.

The truth is, I'm just as skilled at taking for granted the gifts they bring to the table. Maybe the point is that we could all do a better job of appreciating each other but I'm not convinced that the fact that we don't somehow diminishes what we do.

All that said, it is nice when the people in our lives make a special effort at acknowledging what we do for them. I had such a moment today. The Child is now in possession of her yearbook and this morning she came out with it. Each 8th grader wrote a little paragraph to accompany his or her "senior" photo, part reflection, part thank you.

"Did you read Fifi's bio?" she asked. "I think you should".

She handed me the book and pointed to the place. There, at the end of her piece Fifi had written, "I want to especially thank Mrs. Thomas for giving me a ride to school for 2 long years".

Hello? She didn't thank her teachers (although I'm sure she's grateful to them). She didn't thank the principal (although she most certainly owes her a debt). No, the person she singled out was little ol' moi for doing nothing more than ferrying her to and from school.

I give rides to 2, sometimes 3 extra kids. This is not a spectacular feat. They live right on the route to school and it is no trouble at all to pick them up. It takes virtually no more time or gas or effort to car pool than to not. Every single day they thank me. They say "thank you" when I drop them at school, they say "thank you" when I drop them at home. So it's hardly like I've felt put upon.

But still, there was something really sweet about Fi making that public declaration. And when I picked the kids up this morning I got out of the car and gave her a big hug. Because it is nice to be appreciated.



Blogger sfoofie opined...

That is so sweet and delightful! I especially like the hugs at the end.

May 28, 2008 10:11 AM  
Blogger jp opined...

That was especially sweet of her, given the price of gas.

There needs to be a lot more appreciation in my household too. Just the other day I cleaned the bathroom and nobody said a damn thing.

May 28, 2008 1:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous opined...

Ba Ha Ha Ha (Note no W)

Thanks again for the BBQ. We dont do that sort of thing often enough.

By the by though, The Child childishly left her beige coat here the other day. I am out of some hard to get vitamins that your local PCC usually carries so if you want me to bring it over just yell.

They also make a cheap and really good angel food cake.



May 28, 2008 2:10 PM  
Blogger Auld Hat opined...

Hey, will you come up to Bellingham to read what I wrote about you in my yearbook? And then drive me to San Francisco and back? Thanks.

May 28, 2008 5:44 PM  
Blogger Lorraine opined...

Well, sure...gotta have hugs at the end.

I feel your pain, JP. Man, when I lived alone you would not BELIEVE how much I took myself for granted. I'd vacuum, scrub, launder, cook AND pay the bills and do you think I ever ONCE heard a 'thank you' from myself? Some people.

Most welcome, Anonyba. And should you be in the 'hood and it is convenient you may drop the coat by...if we're not here just hang it on the hooky things on the mail box. Thanks.

'Course I will, Hat.

May 28, 2008 6:22 PM  
Blogger Sling opined...

On your way to San Francisco,could you drop by with some applesauce cake?..
'preciate it.

May 28, 2008 7:53 PM  
Blogger Citymouse opined...

That was very sweet, and let me tell you if you were to take a job that took time away from your home life, that whole im out of socks just gets worse.

May 28, 2008 8:04 PM  
Blogger sfoofie opined...

mmmmmmmmm applesauce cake...on your way to your 3rd home in Chicago, stop up here and drop summa that off. I'll thank you in my senior-senior-senior yearbook and give you a hug. With little happy tears welling up in m' eyes.

May 28, 2008 8:13 PM  
Blogger Lorraine opined...

Mouse, I was afraid of that. In anticipation of my working more hours (come the fall) I've been practising saying things like, "Oh. Really? Uh, there's the washer".

Sheesh, alright, let's get this straight...applesauce cake to Sling...swing up to 'Sconsin and drop off another one...get Hat back to, I really need to make a call to those folks over to OPEC...

May 28, 2008 8:48 PM  
Blogger Doralong opined...

It is nice to be appreciated. I just wonder why it's usually other people's kids and not mine doing it ;)

May 29, 2008 6:39 AM  
Blogger sfoofie opined...

forget the gas - can't you fly with your water wings yet?

May 29, 2008 9:11 AM  
Blogger Buck opined...

I wish I'd had someone like you around when I was a kid. I had to walk over a mile down a dusty dirt road, surrounded by cows and rattlesnakes, just to get to the school bus.

May 29, 2008 11:55 AM  
Blogger Kimberly Ann opined...

What an unexpected and sweet thing for her to do. Good kid.

Unsolicited appreciation is right up there with fresh baked cookies, lilacs and new sheets - priceless.

May 29, 2008 2:07 PM  
Blogger Miss Healthypants opined...

Ain't it the truth? Well, Rainey, just so you know, I REALLY appreciate your blogging--it really enhances my enjoyment of life! *smiles*

May 30, 2008 5:28 PM  
Blogger Willym opined...

Again I am falling behind in my reading - this new job and guests are starting to interfere with my life.

This whole posting says so much about you and yours - and all of it good.

June 04, 2008 10:06 AM  

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