How do you see yourself in relation to others?
hmmm. I think this is easiest to approach if I talk about the disconnect I feel sometimes when others say things to me that I don't feel is at all accurate. Other parents at school often comment on how calm I am and how they could never deal with 3 kids, especially with a husband who travels often for work. I don't feel calm - often I've just finished a tantrum in the car. (or I've WANTED a tantrum). I think I'm probably like a lot of people - I feel unsuited to a lot of situations, uncomfortable because of a lack of experience, or know-how, or whatever. I often forget that I am good at teaching, and I love spending time with children. It's easier to hide behind the simple Stay-at-home-mom facade sometimes. I remember being very upset when I was teaching because everyone thought of me as dis-organized (I liked piles of stuff, rather than files - but I didn't lose things. Really.)
I do wonder why/long for a little bit different kind of life - granite-countertops, BMWs, and a laundry/craft room, more $$ in the bank, etc. I look around at my house (inherited furniture, lots of dog hair, and books, and legos) and wonder how in the WORLD I could ever get it to look more like the Pottery Barn catalogs. And then I've also thought that more money could FIX everything. (ha!)
I do notice that I get more into that whole thing (the house-lust, the longing for a car that is NOT a mini-van, etc.) when I'm around other people more (like during the school year). It probably doesn't help that my kids go to a private school, and the parking lot contains cars that often are worth more than my mortgage. (ok, well almost!)
I'm much happier when I have time to myself. When I'm not rushing around delivering kids, and lunches, and stuff. I spend a lot more money during the school year too - and drink more coffee (drug of choice).
On the other hand, when I've been spending a lot of time with my kids, I don't want more stuff. I have a hard time getting motivated to move out of our comfort zone and go to a park, or do something outside of our house. Same with my extended family. I love having them visit. My parents often stay for 2-3 weeks and I wish they'd stay longer, or visit more often. It's not that I don't like going to parks, or having playdates, or visiting museums, etc. I just love my family, and I get selfish about them.