after they go to sleep

 

You know that moment.

When you walk into your child’s bedroom to check on him or her before you hit the hay. That moment when you look at that little cherubic face, tuckered out from whatever he did that day. It’s precious. And you tell yourself, “today wasn’t so bad…it really wasn’t. It was all worth it.” Keep telling yourself that, mom.

But it is. Worth it, I mean.

Right? [cue crickets]

When my 4 year old, Pickle #3, pooped his pants for the 6th time in one day, I wasn’t so sure. He doesn’t know why he keeps doing it, but he keeps doing it anyway. This isn’t helping me understand. I get frustrated. I try to keep Pickle #4, the baby, from crawling toward us as we clean it up, but it’s hard. She just wants to be near me, and she just wants to be near the action.

It’s so fucking hard. God, it’s hard.

The poop, the smell, the baby needing to be near me 24/7, and then Pickle #3 pooping his pants a gazillion times per day. Is it attention seeking? I don’t know, I guess I could Google it and find out. But, really, I don’t care what anyone says about it because no matter what anyone says about it, he’s still gonna do it and he’s still NOT gonna know why he does it.

So, what do I do then? Well, I get frustrated, and then later as I bask in my mom-guilt for how I reacted with rude impatience, I remind myself that this too shall pass. That, one day, I am going to laugh at this. That this will be a puzzle piece (more on this later). And if not, at least I will be grateful that I am out of the stage of cleaning up someone else’s fecal matter when they are fully capable of adult-poops. I did not sign up for this.


 

Well, no, that’s not true. I did sign up for this.

 


When I got pregnant, I kept all the babies and decided that mothering was something I could probably be sort of good at. Everything else I seemed to fuck up, so maybe I’d get this right, right? Damn, I guess I did sign up for this. So, then, there’s no way out.

I have to clean up the poop.

No one else is going to clean up this poop.

I have to keep the little one from crawling near the E-coli germs that cover a third of the bathroom.

Did I mention I am a germaphobe? Times this nightmare by 100.

It’s so fucking hard. Being a mom.

It’s exhausting, and my hair stinks because I don’t wash it enough. I could make a shower happen, but by the time I get time to myself, I’d rather use my brain and regurgitate these experiences to you so you can maybe feel a little less alone in your own mom hell. You are SO welcome. I hope this helps you. Yes, you, mom over there with the stinky hair and armpits coated in four days worth of deodorant. No, it’s not working, they can all smell you. The answer is YES. If you can smell yourself, so can they.

But guess what, for some reason they all still love you. Because you’re mom. And you never stop. And for some reason you’re kinesthetic seven year old thinks your armpits smell like cotton candy, even at their worst.

This is more than martyrdom.

This is purpose. Like the real kind of purpose that can’t be monetized or exploited, because no one can replace you, ever.

So, yes. It’s totally worth it. If not for you, for them.

And damn, they look so cute when they are asleep.

(But then they wake up again. Every. Single. Day. At 6:01am.)


 

Moral of the day for all my black sheep moms:

Keep on keeping on. They need you. You need you. It IS worth it.

 

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