all images © Meghan Boyer Photography

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Relax...I'm the Mom. I Know What I'm Doin'

It's New Year's Eve.  I'm driving in the van with the triple threat.  I had changed the course of the evening's events multiple times.  Just because I can.  I'm the mom.  Our plan included dinner and a trip downtown, for a First Night kid's event.  Lillian questioned me.  As five year olds do.  I told her, "Relax.  I'm the mom.  I know what I'm doin'." 

 I made up stories as I went. 

Well, we have to eat first because the party starts late.  We can't go until it's dark. 

The bar restaurant was busy.   We left without eating.

Let's have ice cream for dinner!  Downtown! 

I pull into a garage to discover that parking is $20 on New Year's Eve.

There are noooo parking spaces!  Let's go to McDonald's!  We'll eat inside and then have ice cream there!

I find a free parking space. 

Let's have ice cream downtown and stay for the party!  Then we'll go to McDonald's.  But we'll have to go through the drive through.  The inside will be closed later.  Because it will be dark.  And we can't have ice cream there.  Because we already had ice cream.  For dinner.

I lie. A lot.  And they believe it. 

My friend Amanda mentioned the other day that she had no idea what she was doing as a parent.  And she wondered if she was doing things right.  I'm with her.  I have absolutely no idea what I'm doing.  And I'm pretty sure most of it is not right.

The days go by.  Faster and faster.  I do things.  I don't do things.  We go to sleep and wake up. I do the same things that I said I would never do again.  And I forget to do the things that I know I should do.   Things that I've done that are right.  That I say I'll do every day.  But I don't.  There are time I want them to grow up.  Now.  The next minute, I want them to be babies.  Forever. 

There are mornings I say okay.  When the kids ask for a pop at nine o'clock in the morning.  I'm feeling fun.  Or I think I'm cool.  Or maybe I'm just lazy, and don't want to argue.  Other days I look at them like they are crazy for asking.  Then I wonder why they don't understand when I say no.  On days when the morning begins with whining and sibling battles, I tell them it's going to be a long day if they keep that up.  Because that statement will stop the whining, right?  Lillian tells me she likes long days.  It gives her lots of time to play.  Well that backfired.  I must find a different approach.  I should do that tomorrow.  I think I said that yesterday. 

I shove a paci in Grady's mouth when he's grumpy, tired, or just because he's talking to much.  Then I tell him I can't understand what he is saying.  Because he has the paci in his mouth.  Next, I make up some cockamamie story about Santa needing every single damn paci in our house.  To give to the babies.   We did take all the paci's this Christmas Eve.  While he slept.  He's three and a half.  It had become an obsession.  It seemed like a good idea.  Until Christmas Eve.  I'm horrible.  We are horrible parents.  We are taking away his beloved PACI! On CHRISTMAS EVE for Christ's sake!  Sorry Christ.  Grady will hate Christmas Eve for years to come.  FOREVER maybe.  We've scarred his future children.   Grady couldn't have cared less.  He hasn't mentioned the paci since.  Lillian fell for it too.  She spotted a baby in the mall.  With the exact.same.paci.  That used to be Grady's.  "That's Grady's PACI!"  She exclaimed.  "Santa must have given it to her!"  And Grady... he couldn't have cared less about the stupid baby with his paci.   He just wanted to know how long until Santa comes back.  I told a him a whole year.  "Are you trickin' me?"  He asked.  Would I lie to you?

I make Dempsey take a nap at different times every day.  Then, some days, I might skip it.  If it works better for me, of course.  And I wonder why he won't comply.  So maybe I've change the time on the clocks a few time.  Just for him.  In case he's super advanced.  And can read a clock.'s nap o'clock dempster doodle!  Sleepy sleep time!  You're tired right?  Look, you are yawning!  Oh, you are sooooo sleepy.  And poof!  He's asleep!  So I lie.  A lot.   I'll think about that tomorrow.  And remember that I should have thought about it today.

I tell Lillian to slow down.  One thing at a time.  And stop asking me for so many things at once.  Ten minutes later I screech,  Put on your socks and shoes.  Brush your hair and teeth.  Wash your face.  Do you have a sweater?  Where is your jacket?  We are late.  We should have left ten minutes ago.  Wait...where are your pants?  You must wear pants.  You can't wear those pants though.  Those are play clothes.  What do you mean you don't know the difference between play clothes and not-for-play clothes?  Those are  faded black.  The other pair are dark black.  Whatever the hell color dark black is.  Isn't that a mascara color?  Wait, why am I asking you this?  I don't want you to know about mascara.  Why are you asking me about mascara?  You're five.  Slow down.   Today I wish she could just get ready all by herself.  And meet me by the door.  I lied.  Wait for tomorrow.

Moms take note.  No matter if we are right.  Or if we are wrong.  Or if we haven't a clue as to what they hell we are doing.  Ever.   Our children believe every single cockamamie story that we tell them.  Which means they also believe us when we say I love you.  And that's no lie.

This year, I'm going to find something new that I suck at.  And something new that I'm great at.  I am going to take unscheduled naps and wear play clothes.  And I'm going to remind myself to relax.  I'm the mom.  I know what I'm doin'.  And that's no lie.

No!  Mom said I'm her favorite.  I get to go first.  I lied.

Mom!  Dempsey's hanging on for dear life from the tire swing!  I'll think about that tomorrow. 

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