I am totally momin’ it. And I’m done feeling guilty. Let’s face it—I spend much more time as the disciplinarian, designated mom-uber, and maid than I do snuggling and reading books to my foursome. Now, I am lovin’ the new freedom I have found in forgetting the impractically-perfect standard of motherhood and embracing the truths of reality. You see, I finally realized what the skeleton key is to those handcuffs of failure and guilt. It’s called grace. So I am about to get REAL about my life in hopes that someone can identify and step off that parental-pedestal before you fall and hurt yourself.
I finally scrubbed clean my bathtub for the first time in eight years. (For the record, it was cleaned like four years ago, but not by me because I was recovering from surgery.) It’s the last thing to get cleaned at my house because, let’s face it, you can pull the curtain shut and no one has to see it. I mean, it gets cleaned by soap every time we shower. There was even a time when the downstairs tub that isn’t used as much stored our extra chairs. Genius, am I right?
Hot lunch has changed my life. I can’t believe we waited this long to take the plunge into cafeteria food. Less grocery shopping, fewer dishes to wash and food wasted (mostly the veggies they were just about to eat when lunchtime was over). No more late night grocery runs for lunch food. More time in the morning for prodding kids to eat breakfast, find socks and underwear (Surprise! We wear these every day!), and search for those missing library books.
The snacks I send to school are prepackaged and totally worth it. This splurge is for my sanity. Those two-dozen muffins I baked from scratch last less than two days at our house. Bananas squish in school bags, cut up apples can go brown, and nuts are being phased out of our school. Not to mention the fact that prepackaged snacks are already rationed out and not by me!
I hardly ever wash my face. I was once asked by a skin care consultant at a home party to share what regiment and products I used to keep my skin looking so healthy. She about choked on her iced tea when I shared that I don’t usually wash my face except in the shower and then I occasionally used soap and a good washcloth to scrub off three-day old make-up. Don’t worry—I’ve wised up and now use the readily available diaper wipes. Clean ones, of course.
My kids hate vitamins and that is okay. I have quit the competition of “who has the healthiest kids” and decided to adopt the philosophy I teach my kids about every day: Just do your best. There was a time when I was killing my budget and my mothering-mojo by forcing my children to ingest every vitamin ever mentioned in a healthy living article, even when they didn’t like them. That is until my son threw up fermented cod-liver oil all over the cushions of our couch. Let me tell you, that stuff has staying power. Whew! It was a daily reminder that it wasn’t working or worth it. Now I buy the gummies (which my daughter hates), and when they are gone, I get the drops (which they all like but cost more). Sometimes I make vitamin smoothies (which two of them will drink) and use veggie broth in soup instead of chicken. Just doing the best I can at that moment and that is enough.
We are often late because someone is pooping. Sounds too ridiculous to be accurate but, oh baby, it’s true. I’ve been late for work, church, meetings, gatherings, appointments, school pick-ups, and more….all because someone is on the can. I thought potty training was done when I showed them where to go potty. But as it turns out, the lesson of when and how long goes much further into child-rearing. So if I show up a bit late and just text you the poop emoji, you’ll know what’s up. It wasn’t me.
My kids usually sleep in their clothes. In my opinion, jammies are cute but overrated. Unless they are filthy or uncomfortable, most clothes are suitable for sleeping in. I nap in clothes, why can’t I take a really long nap in them overnight? The truth is, the only reason my kids have a matching set of pajamas is because of grandparents, hand-me-downs, and Pajama Day at school before winter break.
I hate drinking water. (Cue all the dehydration statistics.) I know, I know. It’s so good for me. In all honesty, it’s something I am working on. But why drink water when coffee tastes so much better? And who has time to drink water? Whenever I do, I spend the entire day running to pee. Seriously. The WHOLE day is filled with bathroom break emergencies that I pretend are for my three-year old. Gotta love the post-partum bladder.
Vacuuming usually happens only when we are hosting get-togethers. The upside is I don’t spend nearly as much money on vacuum bags, belts, and beater-bar maintenance. The downside is that whenever I pull out the vacuum the kids ask who is coming over.
Netflix helps me get through dishes, we have been using folding chairs at our kitchen table for seven years, and there is a laundry basket in the background of most photos taken at our home. Do these realities taint my perspective of my ability level as a person or mom? Not anymore. I have chosen to let grace fill in the cracks of my imperfections. And like a baggy pair of sweatpants on a brisk Minnesota morning, it’s grace that wraps me in comfort, and infuses me with genuine mom-confidence. Come along with me, friends, because I am totally momin’ it!