Thursday, May 9, 2013

In Praise of a Little Alone Time...

A Mobius strip.  Pretty innocuous, huh?
I'm an only child.  This is pertinent information as it will help you better understand my occassional need for alone time, which may or may not be more highly developed than some. I also love my kids to distraction.  I do.  I love them like crazy, understanding that at the same time they often drive me batcrap crazy. 

I think that's so because as an only child, I spent a great deal of my formative years on my own, engaged in silent, solitary, peaceful (mostly) activities.  Now all my time is spent in a frenzy of chaos, and while I would not change my life, sometimes I long for a little "alone time" and I don't think I am a bad parent or person because I do (or, at least I don't think that way most of the time). You following me?

Tuesday night it was my son's turn to come to the barn with me.  It was a more than typically rushed evening, as we had to be home in time for me to run out to my daughter's orthodontist appointment.  Picture the Boy and me driving down a busy NJ highway, me with my eyebrows drawn together as I mentally work through some work issues.  It occurs to me that there is a sad lack of parent-child interaction, so I weakly offer a "Whatcha thinkin' about?"

Dammit.  I know better.  That particular question always leads to an aneurysm inducing answer.  Yesterday's gem was, "I'm thinking about Mobius strips."  WTF?????  Go ahead, Google away. M-o-b-i-u-s strips.  Lord knows I certainly had to, even after he tried to explain the term to me.  I knew I'd heard of them, just couldn't pick one out of a lineup.  Sigh.

Then we rode.  I kept stopping what I was doing with Sug to offer help. I know, big mistake. I could almost hear Sugar thinking, "Shuddup fercripessakes and leave the kid be.  You have your own issues to worry about."  Then there was the rush to get cleaned up and get home.  The watching-him-take-5-trips to the tack room when he could have saved time by bring everything at once. (Yeah, of course I had to point that out, for which sin I was treated to the dreaded Eye-roll of Annoyance).

Yesterday I got to go to the barn by myself.  And have a lesson.  By Myself.  Could focus 100% on my ride.  Groom and clean tack without distractions.  No one to ask where the hoof stuff was, or where their girth/gloves/helmet/favorite saddle pad was.  Nobody asked me if I had a drink or snack on me.  (Yes, of course I do, honey.  Actually, what you call my big butt is actual a mini-bar stocked with your favorite treats - let me pull a vitamin water out for you!)

It was absolute bliss.

Tonight it's Soph's turn to come to the barn as we have a lesson.  I'm wondering which daughter will show up.  Will it be the taciturn pre-teen who huffs and eye-rolls every time I say something?  Or the Chatty Patty who needs to fill every silence with news of school going on, soccer gossip, or random noises?  I already know I'll be clucking at her to finish grooming and tacking up, and then alternately begging her to hurry up and threatening to leave her there if she doesn't clean her tack faster. 

Guess who was playing with Mom's
phone when she should have been cleaning tack?

I think one solo barn day a month is fair.  That's not asking too much, right? 


  1. omg... it has been a long, long time since I thought about Mobius strips...

    1. Dom, I'd hazard a guess I'm probably 15+ years older than you are, so I was lucky I even recognized the term, much less could remember ever thinking about them! LOL

  2. Nope, not asking too much at all. I'd say one per week would be totally within your rights! At least. My kids are older, and so I get three (3!!!!) alone times at the barn each week. It's not as good as you think, quite lonely sometimes, but I have to admit it is also quite blissful. Your time will come.....

  3. I googled Mobius Strip. My head just about exploded.

    1. I hear ya!! You should have been in the car when he asked me to explain nuclear fusion. Or told me he was thinking about the origins of binary code. Where DOES this child come from?? LOL

    2. And tell me it doesn't look just like a rubber band, right??