Communications from out here on the Left Coast, via the in-laws' enclave, have been limited to short bursts from me on Twitter. Truth be told, I am running about quite a bit out here, and when I'm not, I'm reading. A lot. Other books, other blogs, magazine articles.
Haven't been a big one for lists. I'll leave that instead to the Gambit, the Zombie, and Maitri. This song's for all of you. I really don't need to know all of the people y'all have kissed, though.
What gets me all itchy about being here around New Year's, though, is that it is here in Silicon Valley where I am confronted the most with the always-in-conflict dichotomy of individual achievement vs. obligations in familial form. I will be told how rude, uncouth, and utterly lacking in manners my generation is and, in the same breath, I will be asked why I am not more ambitious in my pursuits outside the home. I speak of someone still needing to be there when my child becomes ill or in order to fulfill the volunteer hours strongly encouraged of parents by the school he attends and am then asked why he isn't playing with children his own age more. I speak of the difficulty of trying to get the phone numbers of children the kid likes at his school, since there is no general school directory and many, many parents are working, so trying to get numbers directly from them when I pick the kid up is just not happening, and it brings us all back 'round to why am I not jumping into the job fray. Articles like this do not help, because they still condemn women for staying out of the workforce to raise their children and tell us to just work through the guilt of leaving our kids because it will ultimately be serving feminism and breaking some glass ceilings, so hooray, recession, for getting mothers out there in the workforce in droves!!! Yep, it's still all up to women, dammit. Probably should have removed my ovaries when I'd had the chance.
You see why I can't last much longer than a week out here...
So hey, my wishes for the new year?
That I do muster the energy to do it all one more time.
That I can write more thank-you notes and get my son doing it, too.
That we can all RSVP to stuff right off.
That there will be much, much less racism, sexism, or any other -ism that is the basis of any sort of prejudice that can be used like a butcher knife to slice us all apart.
That there will be a form of peace on earth that will be reflected in air travel.
That my husband will step up more and participate even more in the home and in raising the child we brought to life seven years ago.
That my beloved home of New Orleans will have better leaders and a much better future in store.
That we all stay happy and healthy in mind, body, and spirit.
That whatever threads of sanity I still have stay as strong as can be and help serve me in tough times ahead.
Everybody be well. Smile more and keep your senses of humor.
Happy New Year.
Update, 5:35 PM: This always bears looking at this time of year. I certainly hope our murder rate goes down as well, but until our broken law enforcement systems are reassembled, I don't have much hope for improvement in this area, either. Let's just be careful out there, all.