(Before reading this post, please understand that I love my Mom dearly. She just drives me utterly crazy at times. Hence the post.)
My mother phoned tonight. Phone calls from her always put me slightly on edge, because without warning she can hit me with the full force of her mom guilt (see here for example) or mom judgment. Tonight was no different. After a relatively benign conversation about what was going on in our respective lives, she asked me what I'm doing this weekend. When I said that I would have time to get together with her (yay for a full weekend off!), she commenced with the following:
Mom: "Oh good! I think we should use the time together to organize your storage space."
SD (under my breath): "Wheeeee."
Mom: "I can't believe you've been living there for an entire year and you haven't organized your storage space yet. It's a disaster!"
SD: "That's why it has a door. Which I close."
Mom: "You can't just close the door, Solitary. A storage space should be organized! You should've done this by now."
SD: "I've been kind of busy."
Mom: "Busy? What have you been doing that's so important?"
Um, really? REALLY? What have I been doing that's more important than cleaning my storage space? How about my internal medicine residency? Hmmm? Important enough for you?
It makes me want to scream! (Or vent on my blog.) My Mom legitimately does not understand why I don't find the time to do things like organize my storage space (and hang pictures, and go to the gym, and clip coupons, and any number of other really important things that I'm apparently supposed to be doing.) And it is the single most difficult thing about my relationship with my Mom.
In case anyone is wondering, here's what my one evening at home for the entire week looked like:
4:30-5:00 Drive from work to grocery store
5:00-5:45 Buy groceries
5:45-6:15 Drive home and unpack groceries
6:15-7:15 Cook and eat supper
9:00-9:20 Talk on phone to Mom while unloading/loading dishwasher, tidying apartment, and assembling recycling
9:20-9:45 Finish tidying apartment, take out recycling, unload cat litter from car
9:45-? Blog and personal time
And this is not an atypical evening for me. If I had been able to find more time in the evening, it would've gone to studying - not to organizing my storage space.
I hate that most people outside of medicine (or outside of another demanding job/life circumstance) just don't get it. Before I started medical school, I really didn't get it either. I didn't understand why my friends in medicine rarely had the time to get together or why they always seemed so tired when they did make time to see me. I get it now. Medicine is a take over your life, eat up your time career, particularly when you're in training and trying desperately to cram all 4012 pages of Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine into your brain. Unless you're a much more efficient person than I am, it doesn't leave you with time to organize your storage space.
Ahhh. I feel much better having blurted all of that out onto the internet. (Thankfully my Mom is completely computer illiterate and so could never find this blog even if she knew it existed.)
Anyone have any great suggestions on how to help people outside of medicine understand what it's like from the inside?