Ah, summer. A time to sleep in, laze about, and…add more job descriptions to my already exhaustive mommy resume. Yesterday, my preschooler followed me into the laundry room where I was working a shift (Laundress, 1997-present) and said, “Mama, I want to order something.” I had an idea where this conversation might be leading, but…
When all else fails…
If you are contemplating expansion of your family size, even if reluctantly so, you may also want to take some of the following harsh realities into consideration:
• World over population.
• Over-population of jeans in your closet that you are already unlikely to fit over your thighs again.
• 10-20 more years of withholding curse words, forcing yourself to yell, “oh FRONT DOOR” when you stub your toe.
• Keeping up with technology. At least enough to know how to throw a wrench in the WiFi at whim and block Mickey Mouse Attacks Minnie Mouse videos disguised as benign learning-to-count games. YouTube is not on our side, parents!
• Your feet will grow as much as two sizes with each pregnancy. That’s right, say goodbye to your favorite shoes. Depending on your starting point, you may have to say goodbye to all shoes for a while. Sure, your two-year-old can play in them all they’d like now, might as well.
• Spring break. It’s no longer a vacation, it’s a “trip”. There’s a difference. While difficult to discern, you’ll come to understand quite clearly should you choose to expand your family. As a sneak peek, I offer you this: during one, there is tequila. During the other, a toddler affixed to your knee for the duration. Oh, who am I kidding, there’s tequila in both. But one knee is potentially void of barnacles when you have one child. When you have two, the only time that will happen is when one is napping. Otherwise, they are likely squabbling about something while clinging to you. Should you add a third, no limb is safe.
• With an additional log on the fire comes complete obliteration of your devotion to organic, non-GMO, preservative-laden foods. You may find yourself indulging in diaper warmers, outfitting your abode in video monitors, and a slew of other things you said you’d never use or do: Goldfish Crackers. Chicken Nuggets. Ice cream with Blue #40 as a top 3 ingredient. Macaroni and Cheese. For breakfast.
• College tuition, even in-state, starts in the six-figures. Shut THAT front door!
Birthday parties scare the hell out of me, because I know, deep down inside, despite having identified, finally, so much love and beauty in the world, that I am still not as light as air or sea foam or Styrofoam or even Wd40.
Don’t sweat what to call your kids. All our names are pretty much doomed, anyway. My name is Susan. I’m only fifty-four. But as everyone I introduce myself to can readily discern, I’m old.
Removing poop from underwear is an entirely different process from changing a diaper. I hope, dear reader, you won’t add this to your list of unpleasant parental experiences. If you’re lucky enough to know the poop is there, you may be able to channel your inner bomb expert and shimmy down your kid’s undies without dropping the turd on the floor. Of course, that’s assuming your toddler doesn’t do a little wiggle right at the end and fling it onto your foot or the wall or an unsuspecting sibling in the area. If you happen to have a cold or otherwise fail to notice the heaping pile in your kid’s drawers, you get to do the honors of flinging shit onto your foot or the wall or an unsuspecting offspring in the area.
As parents, hearing stranger’s parenting suggestions are like nails on a chalkboard. On the other hand, my infant daughter, Penelope, doesn’t understand our frustrations, and welcomes any and all opinions. In this post, Penny and I “discuss” when it’s appropriate for strangers to intervene and the duty to rescue.
My husband eats everything. I always expect the one thing I look forward to at the end of the day to not be there when I get home, but I have yet to become inured by my everlasting disappointment.
Next time I go to the doctor’s office, I’ll sign in and tell them to shoot me a text when it’s my turn, and then head back out to my car to wait.
I think about drafting an apology letter to the parents of each teenage boy and wonder what is the most tactful way of saying, “I did my best and realize now I should have hired an onsite paramedic and triage station for the living room. Whoops. My bad.”
Me: Good night, dear one! I love you!
Son: Good night. (Translation: I adore you, my sainted mother, but my acute self-consciousness requires that I conceal my sentiments.)