Wednesday, December 9, 2009

There'll Be Days Like This

As I have mentioned here more often than I really should, I've been sick for the last two and a half weeks. When I'm sick, especially with a sore throat, I like to eat soup. Normally when I make soup, it's a very hearty vegetable soup. When I'm sick though, I prefer a brothy soup, like chicken noodle. I usually use canned soup, because if I want it badly enough it means I'm too sick to think about making soup from scratch.

Unfortunately, we have no chicken noodle soup in the house, and I keep forgetting to pick any up when I'm out getting prescriptions or doing Christmas shopping. I found some ramen in my cabinet, but I wasn't really in the mood for it.

On Monday I remembered that my mother-in-law left some pho in our cabinet when she was here. Pho is packaged like ramen, but it's a Vietnamese soup. The noodles don't seem to be fried. Instead of cooking the noodles, you boil water and pour it over the noodles and flavorings, and then put a lid on the bowl until the noodles are soft. Normally, there's more to it than that (like adding beef and bean sprouts and cilantro), but we've already established that I didn't really have more in me.

So I boiled the water, poured it into the bowl, put the pot back on the stove, covered the bowl and sat for a few minutes while I waited for my pho to be ready. I wasn't sure how long it would take. Suddenly it hit me - I put the pot back on the stove. I didn't turn the stove off.

My copper bottom pot, the pot that my grandparents bought for me when I was in college so I could make myself soup, the pot that had figured into some colorful stories, was now black and a strange shade of orange. The metal had bubbled up on the bottom. I turned off the burner, and moved the pot to another burner. Then I decided to turn it upside down. My white stove was littered with a fine black dust.

Then came the realization that perhaps I am too sick to actually cook for myself. I can microwave leftovers. I can even put something into the flavorwave and hope that I enter 10 minutes instead of 100. But actually cooking on the stove? Not a good time for that.

There were other moments during the day. Little breakdowns. Abigail is alternating between feeling better and feeling miserable, and the little miscommunications that happen with toddlers magnify. The day dissolves into chaos.

I relate this story not for pity. I mention it because I've heard other women say that they feel bad when they read some blogs that sound like everything is always right and perfect. Some blogs sound like the children are always well behaved and everything always goes well. We all know intellectually that everyone has bad days, but sometimes reading about someone else's supposedly perfect life can be frustrating when you're personally having a day from. . .well, you know.

I don't have the time or inclination to write about everything that happens during our days. Because I plan eventually to bind my posts into a little book for Abigail, I would prefer that she not find out that I made my Mommy frustrations public. Besides, this is my corner to remember and share the good times. I can vent in my private journal. But I think that occasionally, it's okay to let other in to know that we're all in this together. We all have those moments. We all have bad days.

Through all of this, I keep reminding myself that at least I don't have a stomach virus. I would much rather have whatever this is. And I got antibiotics on Tuesday which will hopefully make me feel better soon.

Another plus, my two year old has learned to cough into her sleeve. Who knew she could be trained in that so early?


Anonymous said...

Frustrations are a part of being a parent - it's good to let other people know that they are not alone.

So sorry that you don't feel well and the ruined pot- oh! That's awful. Hope you and the little one feel better soon.

Amy said...

If if makes you feel better we had a rough day too..its a story that involves poop..we'll just leave it at that. lol
Hope you feel better soon!!

Sian said...

Sorry to hear about your lovely pan! I think it's so good to hold our hands up and say today is not a good day..and I think that your daughter would like to know how her mum coped on one of those days..because it's good to teach our kids that we can't be perfect and on top of everything all the time. Hope you feel a lot better soon xx