Second Fiddle

If you have any feelings at all, and you work or have children or a dog you will at some point feel like a second fiddle.  I was born second fiddle, middle child, and I'll freely admit to not liking that concept and being in denial for most of my life.  The denial worked quite well until I had my own children; then the story I had woven began to come unravelled.  I found out there were days when I was not the favourite parent.  In fact that phase could go on for weeks, months, and years.  What was a woman to do when their child or children side lined them in favour of wood cutting trips in the frozen wilderness with dad, or being thrown into the air squealing the way only a dad can?  

Mums have trouble competing on level ground because dads do things like taking kids for hunting weekends.  During those excursions kids, unbeknownst to mums were allowed to wear their pajamas for the entire weekend.  Brushing of teeth was postponed until the gang returned home on Sunday night.  And, kids were only required to eat one piece of 'green stuff' all weekend - no other vegetables.  The kids nirvana was a hunting weekend at the cabin with Dad and the Mischief Maker.  If competing doesn't work, what next?  Well, you suck it up and as a former colleague used to say "put your big girl panties on".  That's code for deal with it. 

Most days I am able to deal with it quite well, but every now and then I am reminded that it is a lesson that keeps on playing through life.  Work is another venue where I encounter my reluctance to play second fiddle.  This week I came home one day and expressed that I had played Vana all day and felt quite useless.  Granted, I made sure that I was the best Vana possible, so all was not lost.  But then I realized that the majority of North Americans understand the phrase 'playing Vana' but most probably could not name the host of the same show without having to think about it.  I couldn't.  In fact it took about half an hour for the name to surface through my memory cells.  Poor old Pat, although he is the host of the show, he has not become part of our lexicon.

The icing on my week of being second fiddle happened yesterday when I came home late in the day.  I spotted Kanti, waiting in the driveway and I thought finally I am going to be welcomed as the most important, loved, special person of the day.  Then it happened.  Kanti's gaze shifted from my vehicle to something behind me.  I looked into the rearview mirror to see Greg's truck following me around the bend.  Kanti moved to the side of the driveway and waited for him, then broke into her signature welcome.  Chasing her tail, dashing ahead to clear the path of squirrels, jumping and spinning in total joy.  And I felt deflated, I was second fiddle - again.  

My husband is usually perceptive, but this time he totally missed the boat.  He got out of his vehicle, beaming from one ear to the other, chest puffed out and said "Did you see that?  Kanti shifted her gaze to my truck and never took her eyes off it?"  

I had ended the week with a very blatant reminder from the dog that I was second fiddle with her too.  I know that is true, and I'm usually okay with it, but yesterday it stung.  I thought, just once, I'd like to be first fiddle.  Maybe I should get another dog, a lap dog, one that adores only me and bites Greg's ankles.  Or maybe there are just a few more lessons I need to learn in the second fiddle position before I am deemed ready for First Chair in the orchestra.