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"Life doesn't have to be perfect to be wonderful."
- Unknown

"That which does not kill you, makes you stronger."
- Handed down through the ages.

"Life's tough. It's even tougher when you're stupid."
- John Wayne

A Little Justification, Please

Actually, maybe that should read 'A Little Justification WITH QUALIFIERS, Please'.

See, I enjoy blogging in the morning.  I pad downstairs in my bathrobe & slippers, get everyone (but myself) fed (I'm just not a food-right-away kind of person), get the coffee or tea on, and build a fire in the sunroom's glass-fronted Hearthstone.  All that's done while this decrepit excuse for a laptop warms up and takes about 10 minutes to pull up my blog. 

Anyway, here's where I need a little support & justification:  blogging in the morning makes me later getting to town . . . which makes me even later getting home at night.  And, here is the qualifier (unfair, I know, but it is what it is):  the only part of the above scenario I am willing to change is the "want" of blogging in the morning.  But, I don't WANT to have to skip that part of so many mornings:  I want you to tell me it's okay.  (See, I didn't give you much of an out, did I?)

I've ALWAYS been a night owl vs. a morning person.  When I was a homemaker and went into town for a town day, I usually pulled in around 4:00.  And those were the days that the alarm went off @ 7:00, so it wasn't like I wasn't getting up until noon!  So now that I'm working outside the home, if I allow myself to fall into my body's natural rhythm, I find myself driving home fairly late at night.  Now, what I WISH my mom would say is, "Honey, you know I don't like you driving home so late at night.  But, I also know that you are a good driver and have a good head on your shoulders."  But, here's what she says, "Honey, you know I don't like you driving home so late at night!"

I hate it that she worries, and I hate it that I feel guilty about it.  But then, I remember that no one ELSE can make us feel any certain way:  we are responsible for our own emotions.  So, as heartless as it seems, perhaps I need to just think, "Mom, I know you don't like it, but this is ME, MY schedule, and I'm not going to feel guilty about it."

As I was writing, I just struck on this idea, too:  maybe a reason they (my folks) don't like me driving home so late is because they don't want to have to "come to my rescue" (in the dark) should I need help.  Maybe that's it.  In which case, I'll deal with it myself (always the first choice, of course) or I'll call someone else.  Okay!  That one's off my mind.

I don't know, am I rambling?  A bit?  Okay.  And all this from wanting to take the time in the morning to blog.  Geez!  What I need to learn how to do is to FEEL OKAY with following my own rhythms, the schedule that works FOR ME.  Every time I try to change it (go to bed earlier, get up earlier), I feel like I'm trying to swim upstream.  With rocks tied around both ankles.  And, are those attempts at change for ME?  Nope, they're for my folks (mostly Mama Pea).  I don't want Mom to worry, but she also needs to realize that, at eight months from 40 years old, my bio-rhythms are probably NOT going to change . . . AND, I'm a smart person.  I don't do stupid things ("Hold m' beer, watch this!") when I'm driving home late at night.  And, if I get a flat, I'll change it.  If the spare is flat, I'll walk.  I've done it before, and I can do it again.  Besides, with my two hairy mascots always with me, what can go wrong?  ;)

- Reading back thru this before posting, I sure DON'T mean for this to be a rant against parental concern or Mama Pea!  I guess it's more a rant about the continual "struggle" of children, no matter their age, trying to establish their independence from their parents / family.  

. . . But, no, that's not it, either.  Maybe it's more about figuring out how to not let Parental / Familial Guilt affect you.  Yeah, that's it.  ;)  That and remembering how fortunate I am just to HAVE good parents around TO guilt me!

P.S.  Make sure to read the Comments section on this one:  I opened myself up one heck of a can of worms!


  1. Ha! So you are trying to guilt us into letting you be yourself? Can you blog at night? Just thought I'd throw that money wrench into the works. Even though my maternal instincts are directed solely at my furry charges, I have PLENTY left over - so, now I can worry about you driving home late at night. Actually, I think you are more than capable of taking care of yourself, and you do not strike me as a risk-taker. That being said, I can hardly vote against your wonderful blog posts. So I won't. Be Chicken Mama, Lady Homesteader.

  2. "...that MONKEY wrench..." I mean.

  3. I understand-both sides!! I'm a mama to a 26 yo married daughter who is a delight to me. I know I worry when she has to do things for work, etc. that I wish she didn't have to do-so I get the mom part very well. I also get the daughter part! My mom is 93 and no one can make me feel guiltier than she does, and often. I tell my kids if I ever try to make them feel guilty it's because I've learned at the foot of the master!!! So-no answers here-just understanding. And yes, your very blessed to have a mama who loves you so much! ;)

  4. * you're. No excuse for poor grammer. See, I can make myself feel guilty!

  5. So exactly what hour would your body tell you to be driving home? Are we talking like 7 or 8 pm or midnight? I know I personally hate *dusk* because of the high animal activity, but that time differs for you since it gets dark much earlier there. I say of course blog at night! I have the problem of being both a morning AND and night person, and so regularly go to bed about 1 am and wake at 5:30 - this works great for about 4-5 days and then I get exhausted! Yes, you are rambling LOL... where's MamaPea to weigh in here and give you "the business" as Beaver would say? As a mom I would worry about you out at night, mostly worrying about having to come rescue you, LOL, and the weather, but I know you are smart enough from living it on a daily basis to pay attention to the weather issues. Now I'm rambling.

  6. But in the winter it gets dark really early, isn't that around 4PM? Mama Pea wants you off the road by 3PM? It's motherly concern, I know, but in the winter getting home before dark would be quite the trick.

    Best to follow your own rhythms.

    I chuckled when I read this post, because I am often later to work on days I blog in the morning. I feel completely justified - as long as I get my work done by a reasonable hour. Hee, hee.

  7. Okay, here goes. What am I trying to guilt you into? My only concern is for your physical safety and I've suggested what *I* feel is a sensible schedule for winter. (Moms worry; it's in our job descriptions.) When we brought this up last night and you objected, we shrugged our shoulders and said, "Okay, we won't worry then. (Sigh.)" Right?

    I don't worry about you when the weather isn't severe. You're a strong woman who can walk as far as you need to should you have car trouble or hit a moose or go into the ditch.

    With winter coming on, my fear for your safety naturally increases.

    Since you prefer to work in town until times between 9 and 11 pm and then start your nearly hour drive home, making that drive at that hour because of frigid temps and snow/ice covered roads does concern me.

    For the last 45 minutes of your drive, you are out of cell phone range. For the last 30 minutes of the drive there are no homes you can hike to for help.

    You can't deny we've always said you can call us ANYTIME, day or night, if you need our help. But how can you call (ANYONE for help) if you have no cell phone coverage?

    We've said we would feel better (for these upcoming winter months) if you could get home by 9 pm (our bedtime) so you could then call us and say, "Hi,I'm home safe and sound for the night. Bye"

    If that change in your schedule isn't possible or one you don't feel comfortable with, so be it. No guilt laid on you and no guilt laid on this mom should you ever have a less than desirable experience driving home. Okay?

    Any questions from the audience?

  8. Working until 11 pm? Okay I'm going to duck now so you can sail a blunt object towards my head, but I agree with your mom! How about getting home in time for a "normal" late dinner at say 6:30-7? At least then the chances of someone passing you if you were stranded are greatly increased? You can still stay up later, just go straight to work if you wake up late? That's pretty late to be working!

  9. I'm a night person too and I have never been successful at changing that rhythm. I get both side though. We have lots of areas here that don't have cell coverage and the roads can be a mess in the winter with all our mountains in BC.
    Would a CB radio thing the truckers use work were there is no cell phone coverage? Might be something to look into getting if you are traveling at night, in winter with no cell phone.

  10. My only comment is from a quote I once read, which was something along the lines of being a mom means that your heart will go walking around outside your body forever after. We do worry, even when we decide not to! And, being a kid is a constant balance between pleasing your parents (which we all want to do) and doing what you want. There's no real tie breaker, here.

  11. I too can see both sides, but sorry -as a mom myself I have to "side" with Mama Pea on this one. Getting home by 9pm is not unreasonable.

  12. Wow, who knew what a hot topic my time-for-blogging-which-morphed-into-a-curfew post would be! :)

    I'll start at the top (with the comments).

    Susan, I sure hope I wasn't suggesting that I wasn't going to be posting at ALL . . . I was just talking about my morning / make-me-later-for-work posts.

    I can and do post at night . . . but not very easily because this behemoth of a laptop doesn't pick up the modem's signal when I'm upstairs (which is where I like to be at night when I blog). Downstairs in the AM, upstairs at night. That WILL change, though, and I'll have SO much more flexibility once I get a new laptop.

    Becky, Mom worries about me so much that I've found myself "grateful" (in this one instance) that I WASN'T able to have kids: what would she be like if I was making late-night drives with her grandchild in tow? ;) But, to be fair . . . of course I WOULDN'T be keeping such hours, were I a mama!


  13. Follow-Up Con't.

    Erin, "where's Mama Pea to give you the business"? Well, now you know! ;) I definitely wanted her to weigh in publicly 'cause I didn't want this to be a one-sided me, me, me rant . . . PARTICULARLY when y'all KNOW Mama Pea!

    And, "getting home in time for a "normal" late dinner at say 6:30-7"? Ain't gonna happen. Just isn't. That WOULD require me to change my entire schedule in order to get into town early enough that I'd be ready to come home at that point. Even when I was just here at home, we rarely ate before 8:00 PM - just too many things goin' on. But, too, I know those are the "benefits" of having no kids in the house: I certainly don't get away with that schedule when I have little ones for overnights w/ Bopee! ;)

    Conny, I appreciated your "I feel completely justified - as long as I get my work done by a reasonable hour". But, I guess THAT IS THE QUESTION: what *is* a 'reasonable hour'? It should be a rhetorical question, but it, obviously, isn't! :)


  14. Mama (my mama),

    You know that, when the weather's bad or I know I'm going to have to plow in, I do leave early. But, if I were to stay off the roads late at night only due to "frigid temps and snow/ice covered roads", I wouldn't EVER be driving at night! ;)

    "We've said we would feel better (for these upcoming winter months)
    if you could get home by 9 pm (our bedtime) so you could then call us and say, "Hi,I'm home safe and sound for the night. Bye."" I have to admit that, when I read this and see it "on paper", it DOES sound reasonable. But, I think I've figured out my underlying stubbornness: it sounds too much like a curfew that you would give a teenager whom you don't trust.

    I know that's a post in the works right there: straining against the feeling that people (not just you & Dad) think I need help and/or can't do this on my own. I think THAT is what's at the root of my feelings about all of this (see, it DOES help to "get it out" to understand just what we're feeling!). SOMEHOW (suggestions from the peanut gallery?), I need to make myself believe that you asking me to get home at a reasonable hour or friends stopping by to do this or that (unannounced) is NOT the same as you all not having faith in me doing things on my own. Oi vey . . . this is getting muddled.

    That's not to say that I don't appreciate J coming up here to cut firewood or Dad doing all the maintenance on my chainsaws . . . I LOVE that! I just don't like feeling like I'm incompetent - that others think I'm incompetent. But, too, that certainly was an issue in my marriage: I couldn't let Tom do ANYTHING for me because I felt like it was him saying, "You couldn't get the dishes done quickly enough, so I'm gonna do 'em." And, of course, he was only saying, "I know you're busy - why don't I help out by doing the dishes?"

    GAH! I didn't mean for this topic to open such a can of rotten worms! (You poor readers!) I think I'll leave well enough alone for now and come back when I can wrap the topic up cleanly and succinctly. (So, that means 'never', right? Ha ha.)

  15. Firt of all my dear friend, I stand in awe of you. The very thought that you are incompetent is beyond my comprehension! All that you do on your own is amazing and I find you to be so very brave. I work in a profession that is mainly male dominated and for a long time I felt much the same way. That I had to do it all so I didn't appear weak or unworthy of the responsibility. What I discovered is that none of us is meant to be a Lone Ranger and by always thinking I had to do it alone simply wore me out. You are so strong and self reliant and obviously so respected and loved by so many. I think that's where their desire to help is coming from-not that they think you can't do it, but because they know you can and they simply want to express their love by serving you, knowing you serve so many in return! You're a very blessed lady!

  16. Don't think of it as a "curfew" but as a request that you gift yourself with a set time to STOP - you need some time to take care of yourself and enjoy just "BEING" and where are you going to find time for that if you are staying up til all hours all the time? And what would happen to your business or your home if you run yourself down and get sick? No one thinks you are incompetent, but perhaps you just need some outside perspective to realize that no one can do it all alone - and you are lucky enough not to have to even try :)

  17. Just one more quick thought to add to the mix here. I too have a mother who's concerned, but mine may not be reasonable, and is much too blunt with her demands.

    The danger here is that-even though I'm old enough to be retired, sometimes I find myself doing dumb things just out of rebellion. You'd think I'd be more grown-up than that at 65, wouldn't you? But no, she can easily push my buttons because she put them there, and sometimes I'm helpless in my anger reactions to her comments.

    I'd advise you to try to take Mama out of the picture and honestly look at the situation. Being on the road home that late at night without support is NOT a smart or safe idea, and a situation you're smart enough to know better than, if you can just get over the emotional stuff and look at it clearly.

    I wish you safe travels and a level-headed realistic look at your actions.


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