Wednesday, July 14, 2010

What ever happened to the color-coding girl?

So I took my daughter into a craft store today to get new tempra paints and paper for her. (I'm going to interrupt myself now) It's funny (a little annoying, but funny) when the people who don't get my art call it "craft." They say things like "I wish I were crafty," insinuating that I am. I'm not. This point gets driven home every time I go to a craft store and I get sucked back into the notion that I wish I could scrapbook.

I don't wish that, in actuality.

When I get wistful about scrapbooks and take the time to run my hands along the great wall o' paper, let my eyes fix on the stickers and stamps, what I'm actually lamenting is the organized me that I once was (colored folders, Post-it note flags, specific shelves and trays for very specific things, lists, lists, lists...). That, also isn't entirely true, because I like "me" now waaay better than I did back when I was a paper-pushing, color-coding, Type-A. I'm still a Type-A, but I no longer possess the skills conducive to being one, so now it just translates as something to keep me up at night, obsessing about what should be done, needs doing, and what I should say in the phone call about what hasn't been done (not on my end--on the other person's, because I *do* always manage to get everything done, come hell or the proverbial high water).

I attribute those scads of clean-looking, robin's egg blue and preppy brown books, polka dot and striped papers to women who know how to keep things in order and cook along with Paula Deen, while creating stellar offerings from Martha Stewart's latest collection of things-Kalinda-could-never-in-a-trillion-years-ever-hope-to-come-close-to-even-if-she-were-threatened-with-electroshock. Even when I was still a color-coder, I was never this kind of woman. The people who can do these feats, I reason, have a purposeful place for everything, all labeled and wonderous. I've got the label maker...it even still has the original spool of tape it came with back in 2003. Nothing, ever (it seems to me) is in its place. I have come to the conclusion, in the past 7 years of being a stay-at-home mom, that (I know this will be shocking) I'm not Super Woman.

Well over a year ago, I let go of my quest to color all the white hairs away, and I forgot my age yesterday; perhaps I should now try to give up the ghost of yet another thing that I'm not anymore and move on, mad scientist mess and all--it's gotten me this far.