Monday, March 17, 2008

Z is for Zen

Last Saturday was rough.

I went around town with my friend Rachel asking for donations for our elementary school's silent auction. Came home for an hour and fed the kids and hung out with the husband. Took the kids to our little park for the HOA's Egg Hunt. Went early to help Rachel spread the 2,000 plastic eggs we'd filled a week earlier.

After the egg hunt, I walked the boys home then went to the yarn store for help with a twisted/split/some-damn-thing stitch on the Icarus I'm working on. Went to the grocery store to get lottery, then went home.

Nothing very difficult and mostly quite pleasant activities when taken singly. When packed in to one day - whew!

The egg hunt was, thankfully, a blizzard of short and sweet craziness. We let the kids loose at 3:15 and by 3:30 all the eggs were gone. We say "egg hunt" but it was in an open field so it was really more like an "egg pick-up". We told the parents that if they'd rather not have the plastic eggs spread all over their homes, they could have the children open them at the park and put the empty shells in the boxes provided.

The kids were all clustered around the boxes, opening their eggs and I was bringing an extra box over to a small cluster of them when I overheard one girl say:

8 year old girl: No fair! The little kids got more eggs to pick up!
Presumably her little brother: No they didn't!
Girl (with about 30 eggs in her basket): Yes they did!
Me: No, they didn't.
Girl, getting snotty: Yeah. Apparently.
Me: Yeah. Rude.
Girl, realizing she speaking to an adult: Sorry.
Me: Those eggs were just closer together because that area was for the 2-4 year olds. The babies got one box of eggs, you're section got 2 boxes.

So she gets this huge cache of free candy and trinkets and it's not enough. sigh.

Then, later, at the grocery store, I'm in this big line of people all waiting to buy lottery tickets (Powerball was $200 million Saturday night. One ticket in, I think Virginia, won it all. sigh.). Anyway, the hulking man in front of me keeps backing up and stepping on my feet. After the second time I was about to knee him in the ass but he was so tall, I figured I wouldn't be able to reach. There's this tiny woman about 3 people up in line - she's got a double stroller with twins (I'd say about 2 months old) and a little boy who's, maybe 3 years old, tops. One of the babies starts to fuss and cry and the little boy starts to sing to it. It took me a minute to realize that this little 3 year old kid is singing Elton John's Tiny Dancer to his baby sibling! And the baby stopped crying!

I laughed and said, "That's awesome!" The hulker in front of me turned and looked at me as though I were nuts. I said, "What? He's singing to his baby sister, that's cool!" He still looked at me like I was crazy so I told him to turn around and stay off my feet.

Sunday, we took the boys in to Aurora to eat at a place called Dozens. There was a 25 minute wait and the boys did really well. I was working on a sock and getting the usual crazy looks from people when a woman came and sat near me and took out her knitting!

I have no patience. I am not what anyone would call diplomatic (although, sometimes, I have more restraint then some situations warrant). I wish I was more Zen. But there are times when Zen is handed to you. Sometimes it's gifted to you by a 3 year old singing Elton John and sometimes it comes in the form of a like minded person with pointy sticks.

These gifts make my day and I try my best to recognize and appreciate them. Just as I try to not let the snotty, ungrateful girls and the hulking foot crushers of the world ruin my days.

Knitting helps.

Ze end, Ruth!


CarrieM said...

Wow Ruth! That was a heck of a busy day! And the three y/o singing? I love to hear the little people singing (even if it's my son's made-up dinosaur song)! That must have put some ease on the day.

And congrats to your boys for their stillness. I know how hard that must be for them!

sophanne said...

beautiful ending- I believe the first step to being more Zen is seeing it- you're one step closer.

Anonymous said...

The hulking foot crusher should be thankful for the big brother singing to the baby. He doesn't realize what mayhem might have ensued had that zen moment not occurred.

Nell said...

You want to be more zen. And I wish I could say what I meant to people. I'm going to start telling people to get off my feet more often!

Yarnhog said...

That's an awesome three-year-old! (My kid would probably have punched his little brother.)

You filled 2000 eggs? I think that deserves some sort of award.

catsmum said...

a three year old singing to his sister - how sweet! shame about the spoilt kid with the egg hunt , but I'm glad that you found some nice stuff to balance it out