Wednesday, April 23, 2008


Last week I was meeting with someone and Declan was with me.

Now, I am the first to admit that as five year olds go, he is pretty intense. He is focused like a laser and interested in mom and mom alone sometimes. At the same time, he is a second child who has always had a pretty intense first born that he lives with, and he has been a willing tag along to many occasions I would never have expected my first child to attend.

Anyway, back to the meeting. Declan was there, and playing as he usually does. The person I was meeting and I decided (after a good solid hour) that we were done for now, and that we would reconvene later. All good. Completely fine. Later, she said it would be good to talk again when we weren't "distracted".

Now, I really like this woman, and took absolutely no offense at what she said. But I couldn't get it out of my head. Let me say again, I used what my friend said as a thinking jumping off point, not as something that I thought she was out of line to say or think.

I suppose my preoccupation with this idea of being distracted, or more specifically not distracted at some later date, by my children is stemming from the fact that I am trying to be more in the working world and have been less with my children, so I am looking at life from a different perspective than I have had for the last 5 years.

But I keep thinking of that idea, so prevalent and casually stated, of being "distracted by children". We say it all the time. I say it all the time. I live a mental state sometimes where I am thinking one thing and get distracted from that thought by my children to play legos or make a snack or pick them up or drive them somewhere.

But if, right now, that driving and snack making and lego creation oohing and aahhing is my primary occupation, then everything else is the distraction.

Or maybe there is no distraction. Maybe these things, life, work, home, office, professional , personal, should be more integrated and we would have fewer dis-integrated families.

In my mind, there is always a part that is considering my children. Maybe this is not something everyone does, or maybe it is a dirty little secret in a post-feminist working mom era that we don't want to admit because it somehow reflects badly on productivity.

So, is there a time I can meet later when I am not distracted by my children? Um....maybe in five years. Or ten. Or when *you* aren't distracted by my children, because I am not distracted at all.


mindy said...

Yes! I love the way you question that maybe everything else is the distraction! Yes! Yes! Yes! I love it!

Melody said...

You've given me a springboard of my own, this morning. Thanks for putting it in perspective.