This morning, I turned into the Target parking lot and saw a mom friend. I steered the car toward her, rolled down my window, and said, “Hey, what’s up? I’m just here picking up a few things.” I was actually there to purchase a set of plastic drinking cups in all the same color. Getting tired of the repeated argument about which color cup one of the girls or their friends get to use.
My mom friend says to me, “Use your time wisely.” I said, “yes,” and laughed. “See you tomorrow at dance class.”
All day long this phrase danced in my head. Use your time wisely, hmm, where have I heard this before – oh right- in school, from a teacher’s mouth, after she doled out her lengthy exam complete with multiple blue books for the essay part.
Exams, schools, teachers, grades…those were stressful times, full of pressure and angst, competing for the A or the right school to get into….
And now here I am feeling this way at 9 A.M. in the morning headed into Target. Actually, I felt relatively calm at this point- until she uttered those words to me. This mom was right! I do feel like these days are races against the clock. Racing to get everyone ready, racing to sweep up crumbs before the next round of food remnants lands on the floor, wiping yogurt off of faces before someone runs into the living room to smear it on the couch, hurrying to pick up toys before the next succession of plastic fruits or sweet shop items line up on the fireplace, jolting upstairs before the little one throws tampons and razors into the toilet bowl ( this actually happened and we had to get a plumber to unclog our toilet – thanks Rocco – also did I mention that I don’t have anything childproofed in my house!) My dear mother said children need to learn the word no.
Apparently, I am not fast enough to be flying all over the house squashing situations with a firm no.
To be perfectly honest, my Mom has seen some of the antics of little one and has since rescinded her “no need to childproof” stance. But I still never lock a single cabinet- I’m such a glutton for punishment. Perhaps I thrive on the daily mysteries of what she will get herself into…We have already seen so so much destruction but that’s for another post!
Back to the marathon… I am often found racing up stairs before the little one knows and screams for me, racing to get the milk in the sippy as fast as I can to stop the whining, hurling myself into the bathroom and onto the toilet before someone tries to wipe me themselves – yup- they sure love to help me with everything, even making sure my hoo ha is clean – rushing to clean the bathroom before a play date, hightailing it to music, dance, and gymnastics class, and much to the chagrin of my husband, sprinting to bedroom so I can just lie in my bed- I don’t even need to go to sleep, just feeling a firm mattress beneath my back is pure joy.
My mind is constantly whirling and worrying – am I doing enough for these girls? Am I teaching them enough, am I providing a stimulating environment? Do they feel loved and nurtured? Are they happy and having enough fun? Are they in the right preschool with the right amount of days? Are they eating enough protein, brushing their teeth enough- gosh, I forgot to give them their vitamins again! Are they going to suffer with some nutritional deficiency?
Being a Mom is truly a scary role when you think about it. We are almost solely responsible for their …everything!
Phew, I seriously feel muscles in my neck tightening up just writing this post. Perhaps I should just go with the advice a friend once told me, “As I see it,” she said with a shrug, “Everyone’s going to need therapy, especially my kids, so don’t sweat it.”
Maybe she’s right… but for now I’m going to try my best, and knowing me, probably keep up this frenetic pace, and do my best to keep them off the therapists couch.