Monday, May 9, 2016

Motherhood: Best & Worst

Yesterday marked the anniversary of the day someone decided to sell last-minute cards and grocery store bouquets.

Sure, Mother's Day is important, but as I've said before, I'm not expecting a head pat for being given the chance to do something I've always wanted to do. I appreciate the attention, but I'd rather high-five the man who helped me get there and hug the reasons I fall into this category. However, since this is my blog, I want to use the day after to share a little insight on being a mom. It ain't all chocolates and roses. For some light Monday reading, here are my opinions on the best and the worst in motherhood. I'll let you decide which list came easier.

  • The Noise. We've come a long way from the first cries that jolted us awake in the wee hours. Even colicky Baby Owen couldn't hold a candle to the cringe-inducing screams, squeals, whines, demands, sass, and otherworldly sounds in my home today. The walls aren't thick enough.

  • The Smell. Have you ever discovered a sippy cup under the couch? Or walked upon a puke-filled crib? You know.

  • The Company. Sometimes I feel my sanity slipping away with every shuffle of feet behind me or turn of the bathroom doorknob. All I can do is tell myself: One day. One day, Jessica, they'll all be in school.

  • The Questions. No, I can't open your seventh Capri Sun. No, I don't know where your headphones are. No, I won't put the chickens on the trampoline. If they would just assume my answer is no, it would save us all a lot of breath.

  • The Repetition. One can only watch the Golden Boots episode of Peppa Pig so many times without garnering a few homicidal tendencies.

  • The Memory. I worked hard to convince my kids that stupid was the s-word, but all it takes is a few four-letter slips to have your two-year-old cussing like a sailor.

  • The Nights. From the zombie stage that ushers in new parents to the discovery of monsters under the bed, it's a nightmare. It starts with the battle of getting them into the bed, then it's the extra cups of water, the bathroom breaks, the game of twenty questions, and the pitter patter of little feet when you think you've won. *Shudder*

  • The Noise. The moment I sink into the couch at my wit's end {see all entries above}, Nora sidles up next to me, locks my hand into hers, and tells me she loves me. That sort of thing has a way of bringing it back around.

  • The Smell. Have you ever sniffed a newborn's head? You know.

  • The Company. This mother-of-three gig paired with my out-of-the-house gigs doesn't leave much room for a social life. When Jonathan is working late, it's nice to have someone to cuddle on the couch and share the popcorn.

  • The Questions. These three still think I know it all {though I'm afraid they're figuring me out}. I am happy to listen and steer them toward their truth as long as they will let me.

  • The Repetition. One of the best feelings in the world was slipping into that insane new mom routine. Of course it does a number on you, but it's incredible when your new life starts to feel familiar. Whether it's the same book, the same bedtime routine, or the same kiss-hug-bye at day care, there's comfort in the expected.

  • The Memory. Owen's first taste of saltwater, Nora's first bite of butternut squash, and Baby Nathan's first gasps of air when he greeted the world a few weeks early. My kids make my favorite memories.

  • The Nights. There's a moment that often creeps in after the sun goes down. When Nathan's nestled into the top bunk, Owen is in the bed below, and Nora's hugging her babies in the crib, my husband looks at me. Once again we survived a day as a family of five. We managed to get each child up and out the door. We solved problems, refereed fights, poured milk, and found blankies. We noticed when things seemed off and we kept them safe. When I'm replaying the day that was most likely overwhelming, he looks me in the eye and tells me I'm a good mom.

    That gives me the strength to do it again the next day. That and a glass of wine. Happy Monday!

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