"It's always in the last place you look," goes the old saying.
Of course "it" is. Why would one keep looking if "it" has been found?
I've been doing some thinking this week about the way people do things. Style: mommy style, partner style, worker style, boss style, getting mom and dad up in the middle of the night because I can now stand up in my crib but I don't know how to get down style.
I've been thinking about how we all get wrapped up in our individual styles - consciously or not - to the point that not only are we sure that our style is right, but, sometimes, everyone else's is dead wrong.
Parenting has become a method of expression, and ideas are packaged as techniques or lifestyles and worn like Paris Hilton's dog. "Do you do Babywise?" "No, no... we're into Attachment Parenting..." I'm a mother who can not commit to ordering "the lumberjack breakfast" and instead, prefer to order a la carte. Are there nights that Henry is lulled to sleep by Jim or I patting his back? Yup. Are there nights that we close his door and let him cry a little? Yup, particularly lately. Are we better parents for one of those nights than the other? Don't answer that, I'm just trying to make a point.
I am a "live and let live" kind of driver. It works for me to do my thing while being aware of others doing their things. Jim is a driver who flips people off when they are not practicing safe or sensible driving techniques. He does this in a very subtle way and not so much that the other driver is aware they've offended, but that he has recognized their jerkiness and has reacted and has put it behind him. At first I thought "my husband is a passive aggressive driver." Now I know he's just living his own form of vigilante justice. Just like Chuck Norris. If we're both safe and sane drivers, are one of us better for our driving styles?
Forks up or down to dry? Toilet paper to the front or to the back? Communicating hurt feelings or quietly frowning? Paint the toe nails or leave them be?
This week I'm trying to stop buying into my own style hype, and be consciously more accepting of others. I'm also trying to seek out other ways that might make life at Camp Sinki easier, more orderly, cleaner, fuller, smilier. I'm trying to not settle for finding something in the last place I've looked, even if it seems like I've found "it."