So on Monday the gardener came to the house and started working on trimming our gigantic fruit-less Mulberry tree. This thing should have been trimmed last winter, but we never did it. We are having Phi's baptism reception at our house and we are tying to get it to a presentable state! And we have let the landscaping go. Okay lets me honest here, Joey has let the landscaping go. Okay, okay I will be fair. Joey usually has one day out of a weekend off and we always head out to do something on those days. The weekdays that he is home he is watching Phi. So we hired a gardener to trim the tree and clean up the front yard. When he showed up on Monday he had his 2 kids in tow. I guess they were off of school for Spring Break. The little girl was about 8 or 9 and the little boy looked about 5 or 6. When I would come by the house they were working with their dad. Yesterday after I got home from work the kids were there with their dad again and working. We were sitting on the couch and Phi was playing on the floor and we had the front door open because it was finally nice outside. I see the little girl rolling our trash can full of sticks back to where we keep it. I felt awful. Awful, awful, awful. There was Joey and I, 2 able people, sitting on our couch watching TV and talking about our day and about what to make for dinner and this little girl is working out in our yard during her Spring Break. Is this what my generation has to deal with. This upper-middle class Chicano guilt. Our parents worked hard and made up go to school so we could have good jobs and be able to afford such luxuries. I headed to the gym and on the way I called my Mom. I told her about my garender guilt and she told me a story that made me feel a little better.
My Mom is one of 9 kids. When they were all little my Nana use to clean houses to help make ends meet. There was this big beach house that she would occassionally clean on a weekend. When it was time to clean this house the whole family would hop in the station wagon and help. All of them! It would take them all day to clean this house and they were paid $100 for it. Not $100 each, just $100. She said that it taught them about hard work and a respect for what their parents do for them. She said it was a good lesson and one she thought helded shape her and her siblings to the wonderful people they are. (Seriously, all 9 of them are exceptional people!)