Thursday, January 14, 2010

Brownies, Worrying, and a Resolution

So did I mention that I co-lead my nine year-old daughter's Brownies troop? I do, despite being a rather failed Brownies-type myself. I'm not a camper, for instance, and I don't know any of those Brownies songs. And I'm a bit overloaded. In fact, someone commented the other day that she doesn't know how I do it all. I reassured her that the way I do it all is by pretty much doing everything half-a**.

At any rate. The Brownies thing. Since my co-leader has been shouldering much of the burden of leading the Brownies troop, I decided this week that I would help my Brownies design and paint t-shirts. With fabric paint! Which is wet! And sloppy! And . . . stains fabric! I hadn't really thought any of that through. The girls loved it, of course. They don't do the laundry at home, so what does it matter if their white school uniform shirts are covered in dimensional pink sparkly splotches? But my more responsible Brownies partner was pretty worried about the fabric-painted state of the girls' desks. And the chairs. And the rug. And the girls' clothes. And. And.

And here's the thing, the thing that this aimless post is really all about: Generally speaking, I'm a risk-averse, anal-retentive worrier-type. I worry a lot. Worrying is my raison d'etre, part of what I'm paid to do, and one of my defining parental attributes. Sometimes I call it "planning ahead" or "thinking things through," but let's call a spade a spade. So when--like this week--other people worry about a situation I'm in, it's as if a burden's been lifted. It literally frees me up. Because if they're worrying, it's their problem, and I don't have to worry about it. I mean, I'm glad to help clean up the mess, but I'm not going to worry about it.

So. One of my goals of 2010 is to let other people do the worrying and have more great ideas that make for a fun time. Like painting t-shirts with a bunch of out-of-control-silly second-and third-graders. Going off the water slide headfirst. Eating the chocolate chips straight out of the bag. Telling my boss what I REALLY think of his pink sweater.

But first I need to plan tomorrow's meals. And figure out why the dog is barking incessantly. And see how my in-laws are doing. And put my kids to bed. And check the stove. And all the doors.

I'm worried this isn't going to work.

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