Okay here we go, the reality of parenting. I would not call myself a mommy-blogger, but I suppose I am a mom and I have a blog so whatever you want to call me that's fine. But I'm setting out on a new blog series called, "Losing your mind, and finding your soul" or "Where did that come from?" or "Is that poop?" or "Mommy I love you can I have a cookie?" or something like that. But the point is that often in blog-land we get these pictures of people with perfect lives, who always love their children, never get frustrated, never have a messy house, never forget to take a shower, never have boogers on their jacket or a dirty diaper left in a hot car, never a sleepless night, those sort of things.
Sometime we get a glimpse of normal, but I think that a lot of times the blog post is about presenting what we want all the rest of our lives to look like: a picture-perfect sewing project and not the mess that got created when the mother stopped cleaning for one moment. Or on the cooking blogs, we see these really great meals and often think, "dang, why can't I cook for my kids like that. For once I want to have a meal on the table when my husband walks in the door." "If that mom with four kids can do it why can't this mom with two do it?" "How come she can sew and have a clean house?" "How come she can go hiking all day and still have a pot of chili on the stove?" "How did she homeschool 13 children and not pull her hair out, when I pull my hair out just trying to do preschool drop off some days?"
Okay back to the poop on the rug. Brace yourself, this is kind of a long story. So I have been coming down with a cold the past few days. I could feel it coming on and and was wondering if it was allergies or a cold. And then my baby got a little snotty and I knew it was a cold coming on. Yesterday I got up and got the house really clean. Meaning all those little Polly Pocket shoes that are sitting on top of every shelf and need to find their way back to the Polly Purse actually got put away. All those little hair bows and bands and clips were gathered and put back into the hair accessories drawer. All the cloth diapers got washed and dried, the floor got swept, Dysoned the floors (its a new word I made up for when you pull out the Dyson vacuum--if you have one you understand its magic), and then hand washed any sticky spots. Got all the dishes done from breakfast. I was on a roll.
Around 8:45am I got a call asking if I could watch a friends child - they had been ill all night and he was ready for a day of play. So J came over around 9:30am. He's really cute, and loves the elephant on my wall and did the sign/noise for elephant all morning. Around 10:30am another friend and her son stopped by to play and pick up some teething gnomes she ordered, and drop off Marin's birthday gift. We played outside on the swing set for a while and then came in to play. When everyone left at 12:10pm Owen took a nap and I worked on a few more gnomes at the sewing machine. It was not until 2:45pm that I realized all the work I had done that morning was undone.
Important sidenote: as a mom you can't be bothered by the mess that gets made when people come over with their kids. There are days you will go to their house and make a mess, or even break something, and you just have to know its part of getting to see friends. If you didn't accept the mess that came with a play date than you would be locked inside your house all day, and that's worse than messes. This does not mean you don't have rules at your house, but things will get played with and snacks turn into messes on the floor. I have a small house so I like to have only one or two friends over at a time. But my friend Lauren invites like 8 moms over with all their kids, and she always includes lunch (we all bring stuff to pitch in but still I know we eat more of her food than the stuff we bring). Then we all leave and her bathroom has had 5 potty-training toddlers go through, 8 moms, 6 diaper changes (half of which were really bad poo and I usually forget my wipes so I have to use her stash--at my friend Anna's I always forget to show up with a diaper too, sorry Anna). Her kids' rooms had like 12 kids pull things out of the dress up box, every toy gets chewed at some point, someone will need an ice pack, and to borrow a change of clothes, band aids, towels, an entire tissue box will get destroyed and a book might go missing and come back like three months later (along with the borrowed cloths).
But she still does it, she still has us over, and we all laugh and hang out and cry when we need to. That's the nice part of having a community of girlfriends you can parent with. You show up on a bad day, cry, have an ice pop, let your kids play together, and feel encouraged. You walk out knowing that today is not the day you will pull all of your hair out, and you might even enjoy the rest of the day doing something with your kids. Of you might get a call in the morning from a sick friend who needs you to watch her kids for a bit so she can recover or run to a doctor's appointment. And you say yes because you love your friend and know what its like to be sick with a small healthy child, and because you know that next week when you get sick or you have some crises she will hand you a cup of coffee, take your child off your hip and let you drive away for two hours of recovery. Its the way the mommy network works, and its vital to your survival, because poop gets on the rug and you need to talk about it, or walk away from it. Ok, back to the story....
So after we tried to recover the house, it was time to pick up Todd from work because we were having dinner with a friend (I'll write about eating out with kids later). After dinner, we ran by the grocery story to pick up a few things, and arrived home around 7:15pm. Just as Todd was walking into the kids room to put Owen to bed he said, "We need to round up all these little things all over the house and put them where they belong." As he shut the door and snuggled down with Owen, I thought "Are you kidding, I did that all morning! Can't you see there are no Polly Pocket shoes sitting around anymore?!?!"
By this time my cold was really starting to hit me and I needed to close my eyes, after both kids were in bed and I was "resting" on the couch, Todd came out of the bathroom and said, "Are you sleeping?"
ME: "No, I'm just resting I don't feel very good."
T: "Oh, I think there's poop on the rug in the bathroom."
ME: "Okay can you just put it in with the cloth diapers and I'll wash it in the morning."
T: "Are you sick?"
T: "Were you sick earlier or did this just come on?" "Did you want me to do something with the rug in the bathroom?"
ME: "Can you just roll it up and put it in the bin with the cloth diapers and I'll wash it in the morning." "Zzzzzzzzzzz..."
ME (thinking in my head): "Hmmmm, I wonder why the rug is in the bin with the cloth diapers?"
During the making of this post: no children were injured, one diaper was changed, followed by a bath because it was the only way to properly clean up from the diaper, one box of crayons was dumped on the floor, one sink of dishes went unwashed, one baby took a nap, and I ate a peanut butter cookie for breakfast.