Sunday, January 3, 2010

weekend contrast

Back when I was first really learning about the law of attraction, I learned about contrast. That is, I learned that sometimes the things that are resonating as DON'T WANTs are there to provide you the contrast to see what you DO want. You might have a dishwasher you hate. Either you can focus your attention in a negative way on the situation, saying over and over "I hate this stupid dishwasher," or you can choose to create an alternative in your head, so you might say instead, "Wow, this is dishwasher of my dreams!" even as you are loading an unloading the current one. You're not denying that you have a crappy dishwasher, but you're focusing instead on the dishwasher you wish to have. What you're going for is to elicit the emotion you wish to have in relation to your dishwasher (or whatever). Does that make sense? It's a little Depression Era psychology, perhaps... a little trick of the mind.

Weekends are a particularly contrast-ful for me. My sister who lives with me and the boys works on the weekend days, and most of my friends here spend family time on the weekend, doing chores around the house, spending time together, going on outings. This leaves me by myself with the boys most of the time. I often find myself throwing a little weekend pity party out of loneliness and the wish that I had someone I was sharing this with.

It's just not how I ever imagined I'd be raising children. Having been married before, I had every expectation that I would be hanging around in my pajamas with my hubby and kids, drinking hot coffee, eating a warm breakfast, shuffling around the house on Sundays (at least sometimes). It's the feeling I liked to cultivate when I was married, and it's the resonant memory of my childhood home. Instead, it's just another day, and if the boys are particularly whiny or bored, it makes me all the more grumpy that there isn't anyone else who can just take over as their parent for a moment.

I guess it would be different (jeez, soooo different) if I was working, and the only long days I had together with the boys were on the weekend. It surely will soon come to pass that this becomes our rhythm, and realizing this gave me pause.

As I was driving today, I was thinking about all of this, and I remembered someone's recent facebook (or was it on mothering?) comment where they were remarking how we often don't see a milestone until it's past. It made me think that these long days of babbling, whining, playing, toddling, and diapers are indeed fleeting, and that there are things I will miss when they've moved onto other things which will, no doubt, bring me equal amounts of delight and frustration. It's just life, and time, and we don't get to do this again, no matter how tired or bored or lonely the mama feels.

Maybe I'll try to think up something special (and free) that we can do every weekend. Since a relaxing day with a life partner isn't happening right now, I should think of a way to give to the boys in a fun and memorable way. I need to set the stage for the emotion I desire.

In the end, all these months of weekend loneliness have brought me to this place. It's provided me with contrast, showing me what I ultimately wish for --- the relaxed, homey feeling of my childhood Sundays. My task now is to figure out how to make it happen - to create the emotion I wish for, rather than dwell on the feeling of lack.

Tell me, what are your happy weekend routines and traditions? Have you ever blogged about it? Let's hear your ideas!


  1. Frankly,you've done a great job with your twins.Just to be there with them. Make the best enough of the situation,the situation will make the best to you..

  2. this is a great post about expectations. I like the idea of making the weekends special and that will take some planning because it should be special for you, too. I am wondering how you could find other moms who are alone on the weekend, they are out there, I'm sure. or could the weekend be the time that a roast goes in the oven to make a special meal for YOU....hope you get some other ideas XX

  3. Great post. I love the idea of thinking of the dishwasher of your dreams while using the crappy old one! :-) I agree with that concept, why dwell on the crappy stuff? It just makes you feel bad.

    Our weekends are nice but we never fit in everything we want to. It's kind of like you describe with everyone hanging out in our jammies, eating, playing, taking a walk outside together. Sometimes DH and I take turns with the kids - he has them half the day, I have them half the day - so we can do some things alone. And sometimes we try to have alone time with each baby. And we try to be social sometimes. But there is never enough time to fit it all in. I try not to worry about that and just enjoy the "hanging out." I can see how it would be a lot lonelier as a single parent. Maybe you could pretend one of the weekdays that your sister is home is the weekend? Make pancakes and watch cartoons on a Wednesday morning, everyone in jammies?

    I like the idea of making the weekend special for you too. Maybe you could get a babysitter every Saturday morning and go shopping or to the farmer's market and for coffee alone or with a girlfriend, as a break? Do you get enough breaks and time away from the kids? I know it's a lot harder as a single parent... I like the idea of meeting up with other moms on the weekend too. A standing date at the park or even breakfast together like that weekend morning in your dreams/memory?

    You're doing a great job as a mom to those boys! Just the fact that you think about these things and want to make every day special for all of you is wonderful! Don't be too hard on yourself tho! I definitely think we should all have dreams and visions... Just don't let it interfere with enjoying the here and now. Many times my expectations/hopes are better than the reality of them coming true. But the little things in daily life are more touching and better than the things I dream about.