Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Baby Nuthouse: not the same old grind

I used to have quite a few hobbies. I traveled. Made scrapbooks of my travels. Played the guitar. Wrote poetry and songs. Read novels, short stories, nonfiction. Even before children I found it difficult to really devote enough time and energy to all of my hobbies.
Now, it’s nearly impossible.

Scrapbooks? Gathering dust since 2002.
Guitar? Out of tune 350 days a year.
Writing? Just trying to post one column each week is a stretch.

What I need is a hobby I can fit in during my regular routine, a multi-tasking hobby that doesn’t take time away from other activities.

That’s why I decided to take up teeth grinding.

Teeth grinding, or bruxism, is the perfect hobby for the busy mom. I have found it quite easy to incorporate it into my daily tasks. I can grind my teeth while vacuuming, loading the dishwasher, picking up plastic toys in the backyard, or rifling through a pile of clean laundry looking for a matching pair of socks.

Grinding my teeth just comes naturally when I am sitting in traffic, waiting for a computer to start up, and any time my children are fighting, crying or whining. I can also squeeze in a little teeth grinding while trying to strap a squirming toddler into a car seat or carry a tantrum-throwing 45-pound three-year-old from the playground.

Although bruxism is convenient, unfortunately I can’t recommend it as a hobby, since it comes with some unpleasant side effects, such as jaw tension, recurring headaches and wear and tear on your pearly whites.

In fact, just months after acquiring my new hobby, I’m trying my hardest to give it up, and I’m on the lookout for a new hobby that doesn’t require any time or skill.

I welcome all suggestions.

In the meantime, I am going to bed. I’ve been trying out this new thing called sleep. But more about that later.

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