On being a grown-up

This afternoon I faced a familiar catch-22. Having had a huge morning at work – all great stuff, but completely exhausting – that was so busy it kept me from having time for more than one cup of coffee (I really need two to keep going all day), I got home and completely ran out of steam. No way to avoid a nap. And of course, then I woke up from a too-long nap with that cobwebby, yuck feeling that bodes ill for the rest of the day.

Middle Sister convinced me to get out in the 60 degree sunshine (yes, after an ice storm and -11 temperatures six days ago) and clear my head by taking a walk with her. She needed a break from her winter break online course. Being a double major she has to squeeze in the hours wherever she can in order to finish up in the regulation four years.

That walk felt kind of like trying to swim through Jell-O, but it was good for me. By the time we got back home I felt almost human again. It got me thinking about what it means to be a grown-up. We do things we really don’t want to do, just because we know they have to be done. Moms and dads the world over know what that’s like. From day one we’re changing nasty diapers, staying up all night to comfort a crying toddler, cheerfully attending truly ear-splitting elementary orchestra concerts (that one deserves a special circle of hell). Yesterday I spent an hour sorting through a couple of weeks’ worth of piled up mail – paper bank statements that we can’t get the bank to stop sending us to save our lives; medical bills (yet another circle of hell); utility bills; pay stubs; you know the drill. I spent some extra time creating a slightly better organizational system for it all. Totally not fun, but it needed to be done, and I was being a grown-up. And, as after today’s walk, I felt better for having done it.

On a completely unrelated but rather happy note, I want to share a perennial favorite we’re having for supper tonight – a request from The Boy. Since he’s only around for another week and I’m always concerned about him getting enough to eat I asked for his help with menu planning. This is a recipe I caught by accident on a TV talk show years and years ago:

imageBig Sandwich

1 round loaf dark pumpernickel bread, unsliced
8 oz cream cheese
garlic powder, onion powder, and dill weed to taste
1/2-3/4 pounds of sliced deli roast beef
one tomato, sliced
6 slices cooked bacon
lettuce leaves
1 1/2 TB mayonnaise

Slice pumpernickel in half, horizontally. Hollow out both top and bottom, saving bread chunks to use later in dip or with cheese. Soften cream cheese and stir in garlic, onion, and dill. Spread into bottom of loaf. On top of cream cheese mixture layer roast beef, tomato, lettuce, and bacon. Spread mayonnaise in top of loaf. Place the top onto the layered ingredients. Slice loaf into six large wedge-shaped pieces.

We always have at least one slice left over for somebody’s lunch the next day. I expect there will be a fight for that extra piece tomorrow. Being a grown-up I will probably relinquish any claim I might have. Or maybe not.


One thought on “On being a grown-up

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