Plie, pas du chat, releve.

9 Nov

My 26 year-old role model, Miss Meghann of the San Angelo Civic Ballet had this to say to her 7-8 year old dancers-in-training.
from a child ballerina: “Miss Meghann, these splits are kind of uncomfortable.”
And Miss Meghann so wisely informed them “Ballet is not about being comfortable.”
Apparently, my life is just exactly identical to a beautifully choreographed and executed ballet on the stage  — not about being comfortable.
Nothing feels comfortable.  My children were antagonizing each other this morning.  The most emotionally-stable of them all was fighting back tears.  The middle child didn’t complete her homework and is going to be unhappily surprised when she has to miss recess today.  The baby has started fibbing.  He told Miss Pat that he had NOT had a pop-tart this morning when in fact that was a bold-faced lie.  His brother and sister had given him his own pop-tart the minute he requested one.  Word was that one of them had hit the other, but I didn’t see it.  When I asked them about it, she said it was more of a “pat.”  Do you mean out of love, I asked? “yes” – she  replied – it was a love pat.  Her brother said it didn’t feel like a loving “pat”, but more of a “smack.”
The only way that I can keep from feeling like a chronic failure is to tell myself that “life, like ballet, is not about being comfortable.” 
Monday mornings are clearly not about being comfortable.  I don’t think it’s just me.  If I were alone in succumbing to Monday-morning chaos, they wouldn’t make coffee mugs about it. 
Being a felony prosecutor isn’t very comfortable either.  People don’t understand why they have to come back into San Angelo to testify when last time they were here, they witnessed something scary and then spent their entire sojourn talking to the police and giving statements.  It’s that pesky 6th amendment that requires they show up.  The defendant has a right to confront his accusers.  What about their rights?  Well, victims don’t have a bill of rights in the Constitution.  It’s all about protecting the one who faces a loss of liberty.
It also isn’t comfortable knowing that I will be out of commission all week next week, from early in the morning til possibly late at night presenting two cases to juries.  It taxes even the smoothest-running homes when trials are going on.  My friend, Stephanie, embroiled in a high-profile case that is taking weeks, has to juggle argument, evidence presentation, objections, and cross-examination with text messages about volleyball practice being changed from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.  Then she has to relay that information to the children’s father.  Who is probably wondering how he is supposed to get everything done around here?  (She may need my “send a conciliatory text message to your spouse when you’re too angry to do it yourself” services).  I wouldn’t charge her.  She has done a lot for me.
I don’t have that other parent at home to pick up the slack.  I do, however, have Miss Pat.  Because I pay her, she doesn’t give me too much of a hard time.  But it’s very hard relying on someone else to take the reins for you.  Especially when, like so many mothers do, we keep all our running to-do lists inside our heads.
I think we keep them in mental-note form because if we dared to write them out, people would think we were crazy and we would be forced to cut back our activities and obligations.
Pirouette, do the splits, and curtsey.  And remind me that ballet is not about being comfortable.


3 Responses to “Plie, pas du chat, releve.”

  1. Rachie November 11, 2010 at 6:19 pm #

    Okay…..this blog passage is perfect. You are so right on….

  2. dad November 19, 2010 at 4:00 am #

    This entry prepared me for the nevertheless surprising result of the terrorist’s trial in Manhattan, culminating this week. Our judicial system IS all about the rights of the accused–not the victims…a concept I’d never pondered. Apparently the evidence, witnesses, etc. simply had dissipated–or at least had grown very cold or otherwise been invalidated or rendered suspect. Guess we’ll have to accept the 20 years and be content.

  3. brightenthecorner November 19, 2010 at 4:21 am #

    the fact that all rights belong to the defendant is very unfair to witnesses, which a victim is – just a witness, really. And it’s hardest of all on child-witnesses.

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