At this stage of my pregnancy, where my limbs are almost always swollen, and I wake myself up 4 times per night because my snores are so loud, it's time for some pampering. You know, something just for me. Before I turn my pampering over for Pampers.
There's a facial and a mani/pedi in the works for next Saturday with some friends. If you could see my fingernails right now, you would probably urge me to see if I could get in THIS weekend instead of waiting another 8 days. There's also a hair appointment also on the books for early December. These appointments will provide a vital dose of Mama care that will take some of the edge off of having to lumber around with cankles for the next 12.5 weeks.
But, there are other kinds of pampering. There's also the pampering of the mind and the soul and the spirit. And, I must report that I have done a good job of feeding this part of myself this week.
Well, of course, I made an extra therapy appointment. But not just any appointment. I made an appointment with my therapist (who happens to be a psychiatrist, so that means it costs A LOT OF MONEY) to play Scrabble.
What? You've never done that?
Well, I highly recommend it. And here's why:
First, I am a really crappy Scrabble player, despite the fact that I think I am reasonably verbal and pretty well-read. I have what I would call an "underdeveloped" strategic thinking muscle and it's starting to bug me that Jeff can beat me so thoroughly at Scrabble. So, I had a feeling that my therapist would be good at Scrabble, or, at the very least he would play differently than I would, which would be interesting and a "teaching" or "therapeutic" opportunity.
Second, the whole sit-down-and-talk-about-my-problems-or-neuroses is sort of played out. It's boring and also I don't have a lot of problems, which is a good thing, but it cuts down on the attention you get from your therapist when you turn out to be getting happy, healthy and fulfilled. So, I wanted a new venue that was less about "let's fix this about Christie" and more "what can you teach me?" Scrabble seemed easier than showing up to knit a sweater or to learn how to balance my checkbook.
Third, I wanted to have the experience of being "parented" in an activity that was important to me. Very little is more important to me than words (ok, I admit it, and winning), so instead of trying to make the things that are important to my parents important to me (to be a football fan; or to be interested in finance; or to be in sales or accounting), I asked for an appointment with a surrogate parent that would center around something I like to do and want to do better, or at least differently.
Fourth, I am exploring different templates for my relationships with Sadie and Meatball. I want my relationship with both of my kids to have a component where I teach them and share with them things that I enjoy, as well a relationship where I enjoy the activities they discover independently that bring them joy. I am not sure I know how to do that, and I figured a good place to start is finding a place where I can be a teachable kid so that my own children can grow up with a parent who's ready to parent them because she's had the luxury of being a kid whose parents shared "teaching moments" with her.
Do I secretly wish I could have kicked his ass with one eye closed? Yes.
Did that happen? Um, not exactly. I have a suspicion that he's played a lot of Scrabble. As in, I think he's an avid Scrabble player. I didn't account for that. I literally never considered that he'd even played before. Sure, it's not like it's a secret game or something he would not have come across. I just figured he sat around reading back issues of JAMA and reviewing former Yale colleagues' books on mitochondria or something like that. I wasn't picturing him to have Scrabble-specific skills. I guess I am glad he does have as many Scrabble skills and strategies that I plan to employ going forward, but it really wouldn't have matter if he didn't have them either. I wanted the experience of playing the game that feels perhaps like how some boys growing up feeling like they should be playing baseball with their dads. Do little boys really care if their dads suck at throwing the ball? They just want dad to show up in the yard and put the mitt on.
People keep asking me who won the game. I don't know what the score was, but I know I won the game.
(Ok, I kept the score card and technically I really did win, but Dr. High Points helped me strategize and make plays that would ensure my victory.)
Better than a manicure? In some ways, yes. Much, much better than a manicure.
Maybe next time we can get pedicures and I can show him a thing or two.
(EEwwwwwwwwwwww, seeing your therapists' toes!!!!!!!!!!)