Neverending Story

Two of my cats are on bed with me locked in an odd embrace/attack stalemate. Neither has moved for almost 10 minutes. The only way I know they are awake is the two twitching tails.

Steve is on another IBM meeting. Each meeting sounds the same to me. Acronyms, invitations to ‘sametime’ & ‘ping’ each other, and parsing of responsibilities and reviews. Taking 15 minutes to discuss if they have 15 minutes to discuss the technical spec. From the outside it seems absurd. A friend and I joke about an hourly rate meeting counter, where the $ keeps climbing as the 15 engineers take time talking about time. I’m sure some of it is progress. It just doesn’t sound that way.

Driving to town my new mini van (bringing sexy back) talks directly to my phone and plays me every song I’ve ever owned. Or tires to. Many of them I skip right away, kid crap, holiday tunes, audio books (really- isn’t “genius” smart enough to get rid of those?) The rest I enjoy. Really enjoy. For one verse and one chorus. As my breakfast date says…its just going to go on like that anyway. Thats enough for me, the one verse and one chorus. My thumb hits the advance arrow on the steering wheel and I listen to half of the next song with pleasure.

My 6 year old learns the parts of a story. Characters, setting, then a PROBLEM. There is a big problem and then a solution, he tells me. Right. A kindergarden story is apt to have that… a problem and then a solution. Perhaps a lesson or a laugh. Pre plotted, and prescribed.

In parenting class we discuss listening without leaping to conclusions. Allowing our kids to share what they will and not try to sum up or solve things for them. The best possible response to questions or comments can be a simple “hmm.” Or ” what is it about x that excites you?.” We are closer to therapists than sherpas. But without the paycheck of either.

I just read “The Tell” by Hester Kaplan. After total tumult it ends with the main character digging into the walls of his house “peering into the hole maybe he’d discover some understanding of how it was that life could pick you up and toss you around and still return you to the place you’d started.”

Its an end, and beginning all middled together.

This was supposed to be a post about finishing (or not) for of a “shelve it” kind of rebuttal to the “ship it” craze of late 2012. In general I prefer iterate to ship. Ship sounds closer to finish. It- erate. No one thing is “it” just keep trying. Keep meeting, keep listening and skipping, keep embracing, keep attacking.Keep living.

The tails of the grey cats have slowed. The old one snores, they are both napping now. The embrace and the battle on hold. But not over.

 

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Anna Palmer

Anna Rosenblum Palmer is a freelance writer based in Denver, CO. She writes about sex, parenting, cat pee, bi-polar disorder and the NFL; all things inextricably intertwined with her mental health. In her free time she teaches her boys creative swear words, seeks the last missing puzzle piece and thinks deeply about how she is not exercising. Her writing can be found on Babble, Parent.co, Great Moments in Parenting, Ravishly, Good Men Project, Sammiches and Psych Meds, Playpen, Crazy Good Parent, and YourTango. She also does a fair amount of navel gazing on her own blog at annarosenblumpalmer.com.

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