Thursday, September 06, 2012

Stay at home crazy person

In a former life, post-college, I used to create analyses of HIV-patient progression in relation to treatment regimens. It was interesting, not just because of the data, but also because of the compelling stories behind the data - people were getting better, living longer, and continuing to contribute to their communities in ways they wouldn't have been able to a few years earlier, before anti-retrovirals. Of course, I was just supposed to be entering the data and sending stuff off to the CDC, but when I found out nobody in my organization had been correlating treatments and outcomes, I couldn't help it.

A couple weeks ago, I continued my obsessive analytical and creative tendency by making a 10-layer ice cream cake for The Kid's birthday. Oh, how the mighty have fallen.

That sucker was about 10" tall.

But it reinforces for me that people will turn their actual jobs into what they really like to do, regardless of their job title. Technically, this summer I was supposed to be a SAHM (stay-at-home-mom), taking care of The Kid while Bad Cohen brought in the dough doing computer programming. I put in some time, with swimming lessons and hiking and puzzles and oh my God, taking care of children is boring. BORING. And exhausting.

Hipster Toile
So instead, he got new Legos and I got a little time alone every day to do what I wanted, like practice bread recipes, create new fabric designs and read some excellent books, including Victoria Sweet's "God's Hotel," about her time working at "the last alms-house in America" and on her research about Hildegard Von Bingen, that old-time kick-ass doctor/saint/composer. She makes the case that medieval "slow medicine" may be a better approach for some long-term chronic patients, using anecdotes from her own work. (As another writer reminded me, the plural of anecdotes is data.)

The Kid's back in school now, and this year he's going to a private school (we got major aid) because I couldn't countenance sending him across the street to our neighborhood school again, to watch PG-13 movies during "art" class and overhear his friends' 23 year old parents trash-talking their kids.

He likes the new school, but he mostly likes riding the bus. "I think today I do not want to go to school, but I will ride the bus back and forth," he said, hopefully. Yeah, I think that old reframing your work trick is getting passed along nicely.


Blogger The back of the hill said...

"I think today I do not want to go to school, but I will ride the bus back and forth"

Clearly a world-travelling explorer in the making.

9/06/2012 12:43 PM  
Blogger VickiB said...

Two things:

1) That cake...I only see six layers, so there are either for in a boy's stomach somewhere or you're cheating

and 2) Yeah, I think we all revert to what we like, and if that's reading then I'm all for it.

9/06/2012 3:27 PM  
Blogger Sara said...

OK, technically it was only 8 layers. Strawberry cake, then banana, strawberry, and vanilla ice cream layers, then chocolate cake, then cherry and chocolate ice creams, then a final layer of strawberry cake. Could be nine layers if we count the vanilla ice cream "frosting" I added later. All of this, by the way, spelled out clearly in the six year old's artistic brief the week earlier.

9/06/2012 7:04 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home