…because that’s linked to how happy you might be, according to new research (via MSNBC).
I find this true in my own marriage, although I wouldn’t call it precisely happiness. It’s more that when my husband is into new ideas and interesting things, I get caught up in it too – and vice versa. What about you?
On that note I want to share a few blogs with you that I think can add to your happiness whether you’re ‘married’ to them or not:
Gretchen Rubin’s iconic blog The Happiness Project.
The Communicatrix – I just discovered this 40+ blog and I am so happy I did. Check it out.
The Happiness Institute’s blog
The Bright Side (Homemakers)
Just when I resolve to quit talking about pregnancy…I have a More moment.
I was at the obstetrician’s in the waiting room and some of the women got chatting and sharing vitals – you know, due date, sex of baby (if known), other kids and…age. I said I’m 39. To which I got the response: “Oh, so you’re going to be a granny mama!”
Here’s my official writerly, editorial reaction: !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I’d've liked to go on a rant about how common it is these days to have kids in your late 30s — these days; a phrase that probably only those of us about to enter our golden years use. Many women wait because they are building careers or waiting for the right relationship or just plain waiting. And so what? Isn’t that what choice is all about? Trust me, having met so many women who are heading off to climb mountains or go motorcycling around, I’m not exactly worried about having young kids in my 40s.
As someone who’s faced reproductive challenges, I know that it’s a luxury to even start to discuss the pros and cons of having kids earlier or later in life. There are advantages and disadvantages to every stage of life and every configuration of family. I’m glad to be having kids when I’m stable and have a strong sense of myself – but I also admit that I occasionally have twinges of envy of people not that much older than I am who are about to empty their nest and get cracking on goals that don’t involve avoiding humiliation at snack day. I do worry a little bit about how my kids will handle issues around my husband and I aging when they are still young adults – but that is one reason we’re saving money, working on our health, and basically trying to make sure we think things through; something that comes with maturity.
All that said, what gives a younger woman the right to call me that anyway? Seriously, back off.
I might have uncharitably commented on teen pregnancy (although to be fair, the woman who dropped the remark was in her early 20s.) Fortunately we were interrupted by the cattle call for the next round of women getting weighed, and I let it go. But now I want to know: Have you come across this attitude? What would a good snappy comeback be?
I am now in that stage of pregnancy where it’s pretty hard to miss and I’ve been reminded that some men behave weirdly around pregnant women. That is, they flirt. Eye contact, compliments and even, in one case, picking up the tab for my decaff latte.
In my first pregnancy at 33, it didn’t stand out quite as much, but I did notice a pattern in my next pregnancy. This time, it seems overwhelming – probably because the last few years of my life have been pretty flirt-free (unless you count a bit of banter at the bouncy castle birthday party). I’m guessing a big part of that is having traded in nights out downtown for the chance to be home for preschooler bedtime, but it may also be related to age. (Not that people can’t convey age-appropriate come-hither looks – but I generally don’t.)
Whatever the root cause of the lack of flirting, suddenly it’s ramped up again. Is it that being pregnant with a wedding band makes me an obvious “no” so men feel more relaxed about joking around? Is it some kind of vestigial tribal urge to stake a claim on clearly fertile women? Or is it maybe a kind of caring-pity-move that really says “at this swollen, bowling-ball-like point in your life where you are confined to whatever you can find in maternity wear, I will compliment you as a way of ensuring the survival of the species?”
Well, it’s kind of fun anyway, even if I’m out of practice with the witty comebacks. Have you noticed seasons of attention from the opposite sex?
Today of course is Remembrance Day and those who wish to observe it will engage in two minutes of silence. Over in the UK, the Royal British Legion has released a single they hope will top the charts – and which plays silence, for two minutes. (Links to BBC article.) As that article muses, silence is a pretty powerful communication tool.
But how often do we really allow ourselves to be silent? I know I’m guilty of looking for noise constantly, whether that’s actually automatically turning the radio on in the car or a bit more metaphorical like checking my iPhone or reading if I ever find myself with a few minutes to spare. Constant information is one of the hallmarks of the age and silence is something I do really poorly. Two minutes seems like a long time, these days, to reflect and pause. And I’m not sure mine will be right at 11 am – although I have set the alarm on, yes, the iPhone.
I will be observing the ritual though. I probably lean more towards being a pacifist than a booster for the military. It wouldn’t be my first choice for my son, although I would support him if it were his dream to serve.
But as someone who has experienced trauma, and who has witnessed the ripple effect of post-WWII trauma within my own family, I do believe in honouring those who have served. So many young men, and women, have willingly set their ideals above their own safety and experienced horrific trauma, from trench warfare to Rwanda and Afghanistan. So many members of their families have watched them struggle with the aftereffects – those lucky enough to have them home. It’s a really big deal; something that sinks in a little deeper for me each year.
To sit in silence for 120 seconds is a pretty small gesture. And I guess I’m also idealistic enough to think that perhaps if we all sat in silence and contemplated peace and war a little bit more often it might be good for us all.
Are you good at silence? Do you observe Remembrance Day in this way?
I’d love to give you the gift of a week off, but instead we at More.ca are offering one of these TIMEX Originals watches, in red, worth $75. I had a chance to preview the whole TIMEX originals line and coming from someone who generally uses her cellphone as her watch, they really are attractive – very Mad Men-esque. So it’s fun to give one away.
This is a Twitter-based contest so here’s how it works:
First, you must have a Twitter account. You can sign up here. If you don’t have one, and don’t want one, that’s okay; keep reading our blog for other contests down the road.
Once you do have a Twitter account, follow More.ca (@more_ca). You must be a follower of @more_ca to win. But you’re not quite done yet:
Finally, to enter you must tweet (post as your status once) the following: RT @more_ca Win a watch from More.ca! To enter, follow @more_ca and RT this tweet.
Everyone who does so will be entered into a random draw to be held on November 25, 2010. We will contact the winner via direct message in Twitter on that day, so you’ll want to check your Twitter account.
The legalese: By copying and pasting our tweet into your feed you are officially entering our contest. You must be over the age of majority. This contest is not available to residents of Quebec (sorry!) The entrant whose tweet will have been randomly selected will be contacted by Transcontinental. The entrant will be declared a winner (each such winner shall be hereafter collectively or individually referred to as “ Winner ” subject to every other condition stipulated in the present rules and regulations).
One (1) entrant per tweet. One (1) entry per person for the duration of the Contest. The same e-mail address cannot be used by more than one entrant.
I have a behind-the-scenes ironic tale for you all today. On Saturday I headed downtown to interview Pat Lind-Kyle, author of Heal your Mind, Rewire your Brain, for an upcoming piece on dealing with holiday stress.
But before I left, my husband and I had one of our twice-annual arguments. We don’t argue often, but when we do it’s a pretty predictable pattern: Something small (in this case, organizing a family dinner out) turns into a blowup about priorities, balance, and of course, “you don’t appreciate me.” We cannot say we were not warned: 17 years ago when we were doing a marriage preparation class we got our Myers-Briggs personality tests back and the leader of the workshop basically said “well, good luck with THAT.” He’s more introverted; I’m more extroverted, we clash in some areas and are too similar in others. And although 90 per cent of the time we appreciate all that in each other, 10 per cent of the time it is the end of the world, I tell you.
So when I hopped on the train I was S-T-R-E-S-S-E-D, particularly about having to see a stress expert.
The interview went fine (summary: Take time to breath deeply! But of course, more information to come) and my stress levels abated. And I realized that what was really stressing me out was that I didn’t want to be perceived as stressed out. And I didn’t want to be perceived as a harpy wife with a crazy to-do list (11 a.: Choose restaurant; 11 b.: Call everyone.) When the truth is, I was both those things (with a thin professional veneer.) It was the image that wasn’t matching the reality that was stressing me out.
That and the to-do list.
So what’s stressed you out lately? Feel free to use the comments to vent. And very soon I will have the expert’s advice for you.
From the Globe and Mail: An extra hour’s sleep isn’t necessarily good for your body clock. It seems to me that in my 20s and early 30s, Daylight Savings Time and the conversion back to Standard Time wasn’t such a big deal. Then I had a child, which meant he was cranky for a week.
But the last couple of years it’s been me that’s been crankiest about the time change. Maybe I should move to Saskatchewan, where there is no change.
What will you be doing with your extra hour?
Other health news:
University of Calgary research team finds key to bone disease (Calgary Herald)
Heavy smoking during middle age increases risk for Alzheimer disease (National Post)
… and while we’re talking about vices, Alcohol more dangerous than heroin? (Toronto Star)