Updated: Jul 16, 2019
Six years. I’ve been a parent for six years now. During that time, I’ve made dozens of new discoveries. Some pleasant, and others… well, not so much. It’s been one hell of a learning experience. I’d like to share a few invaluable lessons from my motherhood journey thus far.
First on that list, is to expect the unexpected. For me, this theme permeates every facet of motherhood, from my speech and mannerisms, to my sense of time and space. I’ve found myself uttering statements that I never dreamed of, stringing together words and phrases that simply never came to mind in my past life. Things like, “We don’t put toothpaste on our penis!” or “Don’t lick the trash can!” I’ve heard some real doozies too. “Mommy, smell my hand.” Uh, no thank you, son. I’ll pass. A personal favorite: “Me and Jasmine (our elderly cat) want to watch you poop.” That was my daughter. Personally, I don’t enjoy watching anyone poop. Pooping is private. I even turn my head if I see a dog pooping. They deserve privacy, too.
That brings me to the concept of privacy. Once I became a mom, privacy, as I knew it, was over. It simply doesn’t exist in our household. At all. I’ve performed most bodily functions with an audience now. Did you know that little boys can decorate the bathroom with maxi pads? Neither did I. Forget about trying to make a phone call! They appear out of the woodwork. It’s funny how vital my presence becomes when I try to sneak a five-minute conversation with my best friend. Like, “Hey, it’s me. I’m hiding on the floor beside my bed so I can talk to you for a few minutes without losing my shit!” Then, I hear them, mellow at first. “Mom?” Next, comes “MOMMMMM!!!!!!” Then, I’ve got to decide whether to compromise my hiding spot or give it a minute. They always find me.
About the gifts. These are a thing of beauty. A gift from a child, however small or insignificant it seems, is a treasure. My children have given me many things, and aside from the well-intentioned booger from my son, I cherish everything. My husband tells me I’m a hoarder, because I have a hard time letting go of things. I’m sentimental and rightfully so. They’re growing before our eyes. For me, that’s the greatest gift of all- the opportunity to nurture these beings and watch them become real people.
“Hey, it’s me. I’m hiding on the floor beside my bed so I can talk to you for a few minutes without losing my shit!”
So, when I hear myself say something like, “Is that poop or chocolate?” (and then have the balls to sniff said brown substance) I realize that it’s all part of the journey. And I am so, so lucky.