I feel like I haven’t blogged in twenty-seven lifetimes. So, here I am.
I think part of the problem is that I haven’t really known what to talk about. Do I just jump right back into funny shit my kids do? Do I pretend like life didn’t go off the rails for a couple weeks there? I think about blogging a lot. I love to write and I love to interact with people. I love it every single time I write something and people tell me that I am speaking their language. I love to process my own life and my own thoughts by putting words on paper (screen). In the end, that’s why I’m back today. This isn’t a marriage blog, a divorce blog, a parenting blog. I don’t have to define it. It isn’t going to fit neatly in a box, just like I never will. This blog is me. All 987 sides of me.
One thing that I have learned in the last few weeks is the value of self care. I am changing, I am evolving, I am not becoming someone new- I’m learning to be more true to who I have always been. I am working on taking care of myself in every way. Mentally, physically, spiritually. I’m going to church. I’m exercising. I’m working on my diet. I’m letting go of the shit that doesn’t matter. I’m learning to worry more about what I think than what someone else thinks. I’m learning to stop being so judgmental. The twist is that I’m not really very judgmental at all when it comes to other people, but I’m super judgmental when it comes to myself. I’m telling that nagging voice to shut. up.
I’m remembering to let the difficult times chip away at all the rough edges. No grit, no pearl.
I just inhaled three no-bake cookies that I had to scrape off the waxed paper with a spoon but I know you aren’t judging me. You get it.
I typed those two sentences nineteen times because my 10 year old is staring at me talking about megalodons and hunks of meat. Honestly, this isn’t even weird.
The list of things that I can’t cook is very small. Sitting here now, I’m realizing that really the only things that I can’t cook are things that require patience. The patience to watch things boil, to time it just right so that everything sets and melds and does whatever it’s supposed to do to turn out perfectly. I didn’t get that gene. I got the ‘you can always add enough butter, salt and bacon’ gene. One gives you perfection and the other gives you something that’s a little bit different every time you eat it, but it’s always good.
Speaking of patience, lately I feel like the little bit that I did have is going fast. I’m tired and more than being tired, I just don’t feel appreciated like basically every mother who ever mothered. I’m exhausted.
Dad was in the hospital for over a week and he came home the day before the 4th of July. On the 4th, I had a military retirement party for my ex. Yes, I’ll go ahead and repeat that. On the 4th, I had a military retirement party for my ex. Moving on, that day I don’t think I sat down all day long. I was tired- physically and mentally. I was flaring and in pain- because fibromyalgia is like your least favorite relative who consistently visits at the worst possible time. I was stressed- because… life. But throughout the day, I was also the only one who could consistently be found, in the kitchen, just plodding away, getting it done. It seemed like every time I looked for someone to ask them to do something, they were lying in bed. I found myself wondering what I always wonder when I feel overworked and underpaid. What would happen if I just laid down?
We know the answer to that, right? I mean for starters, none of our guests would have been eating when they got here…
Moms, well women, keep the world turning. We are the taxis, the nurses, the makers of makeshift critter enclosures. We are the nurturers, the caregivers, the chicken soup makers. We are the hunters and gatherers of backpacks, shin guards, lost permission slips…
We are supposed to do all of this without losing our shit. When we repeat the same request 47 times and become unglued on the 48th repetition, they look at us like we are crazy and knocking on menopause’s door. We are supposed to manage the home, a career, the children, the aging parents, the extracurriculars, the bills and keep track of everyone’s everything so we can recall at a moment’s notice where you left your keys and we are supposed to do this with a pleasant disposition and a smile and no need to nap.
You really are the reason we drink. Those Mother’s Day liquor store jokes aren’t really jokes.
Even though we do all of this and manage to keep everyone alive, clothed and mostly intact, for some reason, we are also masters of guilt. Somedays we love every single moment of wiping noses, digging under the front seat for that super important Pokémon card that has turned up missing and cooking dinner that doesn’t get eaten because today you are a yogurtatarian. Other days, we don’t. We want to go on a week long vacation, BY OURSELVES, to a place where no one asks us for one mother-bleeping thing, where we can either sit by a pool guzzling fruity drinks until we forget we even have children, or lie in bed binge watching Netflix until check out time, as long as no one makes that decision but us. And we feel guilty for wanting that.
I literally think women are broken.
On the 4th, I listened to my ex and my teenager do their typical, “Mom is so dramatic” schtick. “I was just lying down for a minute, and Mom came in there about to have a breakdown.” I take care of everyone. Everyone. Even my ex. Who takes care of me?
That’s the lesson here, Ladies. I take care of me. I do.
STOP. FEELING. GUILTY.
Take the nap. Take the trip. Eat the no-bake cookies with a spoon because they taste just as good that way. If stuff doesn’t get done, it doesn’t get done. No one will die but maybe they will see how much Mom does to give them this life. Maybe more than seeing how much Mom does they might actually see how much of us we give away. We do it because we love them but we don’t have to be martyrs. I need this lesson, too.
Let little Billy find his own Pokémon cards, but keep on kissing the boo-boos.