So the other night I was watching Jeopardy with my husband. Boring, I know, but hey, that's life as a parent: no babysitter, so you put them to bed and watch TV and call it a date. Anyway, one of the questions was about the Secretary of the Treasury. I realized that I had absolutely NO idea who that was. My mind was as blank as the look my kids give me when I ask them what they did at school each day.
Now, I majored in International Relations with an emphasis in US/Soviet relations and Middle Eastern conflict. I minored in International Business with an emphasis in Pacific Rim economies. I used to know all 12 Supreme Court justices and the year they were confirmed, the names of various ambassadors and United Nations dignitaries, and who each of my senators and members of Congress were. I used to be knowledgeable in foreign policy, domestic policy, our military's presence in any foreign land. Not anymore.
These days, I can correctly name all four Wiggles by color, name, and musical instrument, identify the entire PTA executive board, all 8 Kindergarten teachers, and Miley Cyrus's current boyfriend - but I don't know a single member of the Cabinet or who the lieutenant governor of my state is. What the hell happened?
Motherhood happened, that's what. My priorities changed, my sphere of influence changed, my world shrank, and my reading list changed from Newsweek and USA Today to Goodnight Moon and Hop on Pop. I used to be the most well-informed woman in my neighborhood, and, I'll be honest, I looked down on the rest of them for not keeping up on current events. Now I know: they weren't stupid or unconcerned with what was happening in the world. They were just stuck in baby jail, barely able to find time to pee and throw in a load of laundry so they could go to the store without spit-up on their clothes. That WAS their world. They didn't have time to step out into the "real" world because their lives were so busy with diapers and feeding that, IF the TV went on, it was Elmo, not CNN, they watched. Rather than French politics, they were busy with french fries. Who knew.
Slacker Mom Says...I'm going to make the time to catch up on what's going on around me. I don't want to make my world so small that I forget that what's out "there" is really important, too. I want my girls to be up on current events, to be able to discuss world affairs (but not politician's affairs, thank you very much, Mark Sanford) and the human condition beyond our front door. Miley's boyfriend may be news in pre-teen land, but there's a whole world outside that I used to know and love. Time to recapture it.
But first I have to go figure out who the yellow Wiggle is. You know, the one who took over for Greg.