Monday, May 14, 2012

Misadventures of Motherhood

Recently, a friend of mine has been posting some of her thoughts on what Motherhood means to her. It has gotten me thinking about what Motherhood means to me. Should I lead off with the tender moments, or maybe the grotesque? Perhaps I should start with the monotonous? or the unpredictable? the laughter? the tears? Where to begin? Pondering on that question brings me to my first thought:

Motherhood is a whirlwind often going from one extreme to another(and sometimes back again) within seconds.

Motherhood is snuggling a sick child, feeling so much love, and then having that child throw up all over you. Motherhood is bravely snuggling the child again and having them say, "Mom, you make me feel better."

Motherhood is making perfectly rational statements and then realizing that you have used words that have no business going together in this world or the world to come. For example, "Why is there mayonnaise on the vacuum cleaner?" "If I catch you eating Jello powder in bed one more time..." or my personal favorite, "Who put toothpaste on the cat?"

Motherhood is reading Dr Suess so many times that you find yourself speaking in rhymes.

Motherhood is the tragic day that your children don't want to read Dr Suess anymore.

Motherhood is talking to your old friends, with whom you used to have important conversations about boys and evil math teachers, and discussing which PBS shows are educational and which are just annoying.

Motherhood is trying to come up with words to use instead of "why". You may be wondering to what point and purpose Katie is trying to stop using "why". A few conversations with my 3 year old should clear up any questions on that issue.

Motherhood is .......having to take a break from your blog because someone wants to 'nuggle you.

Motherhood is preparing to yell because you tripped on a pair of shoes, only to discover that they are your shoes.

Motherhood is knowing the fastest way to the bathroom in any given place. (this one actually starts during pregnancy, it just never goes away)

Motherhood is a laundry cup full of dandelions because the children know that you love yellow flowers.

Motherhood is discovering a great series of books with your children.

Motherhood is wondering why you have to have the same conversations at least three or four times per week.

Motherhood is reliving your childhood, and not in a good way, and realizing that you don't have any more solutions to give your child than you had for yourself.

Motherhood is reliving your childhood in the best ways and discovering the joy of discovering.

Motherhood is trying to put thought into things that you do automatically in an effort to teach your children how to do them.

Motherhood is discovering the adventure in things. For example: The sprinklers you drove by that were crossing to form an X must indicate the location of buried treasure. Grocery stores are great places to play spies. A mess-monster that is threatening the castle is more likely to be cleaned up than a dirty family room.

Motherhood is thinking that if you hear "What if..." one more time you'll be driven into the assylum.

Motherhood is swelling with pride at preschool graduations.

Motherhood is packing a suitcase for a trip to the grocery store.

Motherhood is shouting, "Will you please stop making all of that noise?!"

Motherhood is seeing the boy that you dated and fell in love with walking down the hall with a child on his back and one on each leg and really knowing what love is.

Motherhood is tucking sleepy heads into bed with rituals that belong to each child and then sneaking back for one last kiss.

Motherhood is never knowing whether you should scold, cry, or laugh out loud.

Motherhood is the relief on my readers faces as I cut my thoughts off to go be a Mother.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Misadventures of Misplaced Expectations

I once heard that ALL disappointments in life are caused by un-met expectations. Because the speaker was a "Communications Expert", his belief was that un-met expectations were caused by poor communication. Judging by the disappointed crying, my folly this time was definitely a failure in communication.

A few days ago, I had to take Alex in for his birthday check-up. He didn't like to have the Dr look in his ears, and he cried. He didn't like the Dr to look in his mouth, and he cried. He didn't like to lie on the crinkly paper, and he cried. He REALLY didn't like to get his shot, and he REALLY cried. After the appointment, we had a little over an hour before we would need to get Erika from school. Since the pediatrician's office is close to Target and since he had had a difficult morning, I asked Alex if he would like to go to Target to get a cookie and look around. He responded that he didn't want to go to Target. He said that he would like to take his car home to be with its friends. I thought that going home and playing with his new matchbox cars would be a fun way for us to spend the time, so I agreed. After we got home, Alex took the car that he had brought with him to the Dr's office and ran into the family room. He carefully placed his car on the couch where he had left the others before his appointment and said, "The car is with his friends, we can go to Target now." I'm sure you see now where my poor communications had led me. I interpreted his desire to bring his car home as a desire to be home himself. The drive to Target from the Dr's office would have been about a mile. The drive home from the Dr's office was closer to ten miles. Hard hearted woman that I am, I was unwilling to drive 10 miles back to Target after I had just driven the 10 miles home. I sadly explained that we would not be able to drive back to Target, it was too far and we had other things that we would need to do. Many and bitter were our tears at this unhappy outcome.

I now realize that when people say that you need to stay one step ahead of your children they are actually referring to the need to know the chronological order of the steps your children wish to make.