I'm changing my name.
I'm no longer "Rachel." Or "Mom."
I'm "woman who chases tornado baby around the house picking crap off the floor in a far less efficient manner than tornado baby can scatter it."
Or maybe "woman who not only cleans poop off baby bottom many times a day, but must also now clean it off of the floor from poop-flinging-ninja baby."
Or maybe, "woman who fishes Maddy's items that said tornado-ninja baby has deposited into a toilet full of poop that sweet-but-forgetful 4-year-old has forgotten to flush . . .again."
Or maybe, "woman who must make breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, bottle, snack, dinner, snack, bottle . . . then clean it all up . . . only to be ready to make another snack as soon as she's done cleaning."
Or maybe, "woman who let my little girl watch 2 hours of TV from my phone so I could get a little more (fitful) sleep in, and who accidentally slept too deep and woke to screaming ninja-poop-flinging baby way later than she planned."
And, right now, you could call me "woman who is surrounded by an office of clutter, a kitchen that needs cleaning -- again -- a floor that has peas and watermelon sprayed after snack time all over the floor by tornado-ninja baby, laundry that needs folding . . . but who just needs a moment to herself to stop DOING -- and instead write about DOING."
|Just keepin' it real.|
And while I'm at it, I think I'll change my girls' names too.
Little miss is no longer little miss, or just tornado baby, or ninja baby. She is Master Screamer. Expert Food and Poop Flinger. She is Little Miss Poops-a-Lot. Sweet Snuggler. Crazy Wriggler. She is The Never-Ending Food Eater. She is the Melt-My-Heart-er.
And Maddy is Mom-Waker at 5:30 Morning-er. She is TV Craver. Sugar Inhaler. Expert in Manipulating Treats Out of Mom. She is Fit-Thrower. Sweet Snuggler. Funniest Things Ever Sayer.
And the crazy part of all of this is that as much as days like this drive me nutso -- I still melt when they snuggle me. Or tell me cute things. Or say they love me. And somehow, I ALMOST forget.
I know I wouldn't trade this stay-at-home gig for a plush office with a plush paycheck if my life depended on it. (Ok, maybe if my life depended on it -- I would at least consider.)
But on days like today, I do wonder what I've gotten myself into. I do wonder where "Rachel" went -- and will she ever emerge again?
For those of you who aren't parenting a child yet (by choice or not), I sincerely want to tell you it's all "snuggles and snails and puppy dog tails" or "sugar and spice and everything nice." I want to say that once you hold your child in your arms, you'll be so in love and so grateful that you will NEVER mind changing a poopy diaper. You'll just be so grateful they pooped!
I want to tell you that you'll only feel mushy love, and gratitude, and a heart that's overflowing.
But the truth is -- for every sweet caress -- there's a boob bite, or an arm pinch, or an accidental head butt while baby throws a fit that she cannot eat that poisonous berry. (How dare you mom!)
For every exciting milestone reached -- there's a feeling of "oh my gosh, haven't we gotten past this phase yet?!!?"
For every hug and snuggle -- there's defiance itself screaming no at your face, and you wonder how in the world you created this monster.
For every high, there is a low.
And no one feeling can capture it all. Gratitude can't cover it. Neither can anger or sadness. Or just feeling lost in all of it.
When I was engaged, I ashamedly admitted to a friend that I wasn't feeling particularly excited at the moment about our upcoming marriage. I was overwhelmed.
She simply, but wisely told me -- "Rachel, 9 months is a long time to let yourself feel only ONE thing."
And isn't that so true with motherhood? Even motherhood (or pregnancy) after loss?
You can't just feel one thing. Because there's so much more than one thing going on at the time -- both in your heart and in your world.
For those of us who cannot take our children for granted, absolutely there's gratitude. Absolutely there is a feeling that, "yes, this is a hard day -- but it sure beats burying a baby, or miscarrying, or struggling with infertility."
But that gratitude just isn't enough to cover all the hard days -- and all those emotions you'll likely feel when they come.
And they WILL come.
Just ask ninja baby. She'll tell you. (And then she'll fling some poop your way, just for emphasis.)
After all -- poop is still poop. No matter how you feel.