Sunday, November 14, 2010

The Goo and The Glop

When I was 19, there were several things that I said I'd never be when I became a mother.
I would never be the Mom at the beach pulling the wagon of ridiculousness behind her.
I would never be the Mom with the stickers stuck to the inside of her back windows in the car.
I would never be the Mom who yelled at her kids in public.
I would never be the Mom with the kid who's pants were too short.
I would never be the Mom with the carpet that had fingernail polish stains on it.

And well, here's the thing, I've become that Mom. Here's what I want to tell that 19 year old me who was reading "People" magazine and drinking a beer, judging that poor 34 year old me on the beach that day.

Look sweetie....

You bring along that wagon behind you because you'll do anything you can to stay at the beach for more than 2 hours when you have kids. You'll bring along snacks, towels, swim diapers and wipes. Toys, lotion, juice boxes and minnow nets. You're gonna need coozies and blankets, umbrellas and chairs. And you can say all you want to about how you want to keep it simple and your kids won't need that much but guess what? You won't and they will.

You let your kid put stickers on your car windows because you know what? It keeps them quiet for 1.1 seconds and it lets you jam out to that Tears for Fears song you haven't heard for years. Goo Gone can get rid of it with the help of a straight blade so just get over it already.

You're gonna yell. There's no doubt about it. The "Can I have it's" will come and they will get you. They will crawl up your back and into your ears and you'll take all you can until you just explode with a big fat "No!!!!" You'll turn around and see the 19 year old you looking at the 34 year old you with the stinkiest face and you'll want to flip her the bird. But you won't because you're a lady now.

You'll find out that these kids of yours grow like weeds after 3 days of rain. You won't be able to keep up and neither will your bank account. And that's how it happens. You'll send the Big one to church looking like the biggest dork you've ever seen but the 34 year old you won't really care that much because at least he brushed his teeth.

You're gonna learn the lesson of "give them an inch, they take a mile" real, real quick. What's that 19 year old me? Why do I let a 4 year old have nail polish in her room? Because, again, it keeps her quiet for 1.1 seconds and that's all the 34 year old me needs in life. Just a moment to catch a breath, take a sip, read a paragraph or fold a towel.

So you can sit there all you want and judge me and think about how you're gonna do it all different but you know what? You won't. You're gonna be all those things you said you'd never be. But then you'll be other things too that you thought you never could be. You're gonna learn what it's like to wear "your heart outside of your body." You're gonna sit and wonder and watch and plan and figure and hope. But it's not for yourself anymore. It's all for them.

Who will you be? Who will you love? Will they ever love you the way that I do? What will you do? Where will you live? How many grandbabies will you give me?

What will you grow? What will you build? What will you miss about being little?

The 34 year old me dreams about the 19 year old you but is drinking in every single second of the now, the present. The stickers, the nail polish, the goo and the glop.

1 comment:

  1. You have a way with words my friend.

    I can almost imagine or remember laying out at the beach and looking at that poor 34 year old thinking she was so crazy for bringing all that stuff to the beach. Did she not realize that her kids would realize the beach was enough. Let me eat more words.

    I remember buying wine/beer at the grocery store and seeing that poor mom yell at her kids in the grocery store checkout line. Does she not realize she should have never given in to candy at the checkout counter the last time. The kids will never forget that 1 time. I will never make that mistake. Boys was I wrong. If Mac is good he gets a pack of starburst EVERY single time. He is really good at the store because he knows starburst are coming. Man I was so young....