Sunday, May 11, 2014

A Bunch of Words About Moms

This isn't a post about the five magical things every mom should do. This post won't tell you the ten things you absolutely should not do...or the twenty-five foods you're most likely to get judged for feeding them....or how to make their lunches look a five-star chef is on retainer in your home.

But I do have something important to say.

I will never be the mom who always looks put together. I want to be. I want to be thin, and well-dressed, and have really great hair. But I'm not. I never will be. I love funny t-shirts, Chuck Taylors, and making inappropriate jokes that everyone else is thinking but refuses to say. I love driving a bit too fast and letting my kids listen to good music that's beyond their years. I love laughing with my twelve-year-old son because damn it, boobs is a funny word.

Do you "fall short" too?

Well, guess what? We're awesome. Every time we do something we are sure falls under World's Okayest Mom our kids think we are the greatest. Our mistakes usually end up making the best memories. My kids first memory isn't of the perfect desserts and birthday cakes I've made over the years. They remember the times I let them decorate with me. They remember the times we ruined aprons together because childhood is messy and that's okay. They remember the first time I let them crack eggs and it took us thirty minutes to wipe down the upper cabinet doors.

So, I'm imperfect. Besides me, who cares? No one. That's who. So now, my own list of five things every mom should hear.

1) You're doing it right!
So what you're doing doesn't work for the mom next to you. So it doesn't work for the other moms at the park. doesn't for any other mom anywhere... Does it work work for you and your kids? Is it right for your family? Then congratulations, you're doing it right.

2) Your kid ate dinner!
So it was three chicken nuggets, a spoonful of grape jelly, and half a pop-tart. Who cares? At least they didn't starve. Every kid goes through a time when ONLY BLUE BOX MAC AND CHEESE WILL WORK!!!! They add vitamins to crap foods for a reason. Because kids are picky, and temperamental, and allowed to act how I want to every other Friday. So don't feel bad if you've served your seven-year-old Yellowed-hatted-fisherman fish sticks for the last ten dinners in a row. Is that what he'll eat? Then congratulations, you fed your child!
And for what it's worth, I love me some blue box mac and cheese.

3) Your kid cried!
Kids need a lot. They need love and affection and apparently to be watched while they do everything ever because WATCH ME, MAMA, WATCH ME!!! And sometimes moms need a break. So if your stories come on and you let your kid say Mama seventeen times without responding and they keep playing? It's okay. It's more than okay, it's great! If your kid cries because he can't have the cast iron skillet on aisle four and cries the entire grocery trip while you hum along to Tears For Fears playing over the're doing just fine. So Perfect Soccer Mom in the freezer section gave you the eye, so Hey, I Just Worked Out in the gluten-free section turned up her nose, so you have half a grape soda down your front and you really love this Tears For Fears's okay. Kids cry. Over dumb stuff. My son once had a full-on melt down in the store WHEN I SAID HE COULD HAVE THE TOY HE ASKED FOR. They are overwhelmed and so are moms. And those Judgey McJudgertons? Well, either someday they'll really be into Musak or they can suck it. Either way, congratulations! Your kid cried. You'll both get over it.

4) Your kid went to sleep!
Oh my god, you co-sleep? Oh my god, you let them cry it out? Oh my god, your kid goes to bed when? Who gives one damn??? Are people sleeping? Is the mother involved in the getting of the sleep? Then great, you've struck gold. Sleep is the most coveted possession a mom can have. when they're a baby, you're up every two hours/fifteen minutes feeding, changing, etc, etc. As toddlers, you choose your sleep routine which is always anything but. School age it's the fight of bedtime vs. get your ass out of bed because I wanted to sleep three more hours but I had to get up at five-thirty and holy hell, the bus is here! There's always that five seconds when you think, Saturday! I could sleep in...if it weren't for soccer/dance/voice/guitar/every other thing in the world. When you can sleep and your child can sleep no matter the means? Congratulations! Your child went to sleep.

5) Your kid says I love you.
So, toddlers are jerks. I mean grade-A douche canoes. They volley the occasional you're fat, you look funny, those clothes are dumb, all the way up to I hate you. That's usually reserved for that time you wouldn't let them run in traffic. School age kids are just as bad, only they have a bigger vocabulary to make you  feel more inadequate than every mother already feels. And teenagers? The actual worst.
But the thing is, they are just kids. They're learning how to be people and eventually adults. Let's face it, don't you have at least once a week when someone says something to you and your first reaction is, "But your face is a giant purple dinosaur and you look like an electric cat!" The only difference is you've learned to save that shit for Twitter. And even after the worst day of all time, and the fact that you feel like a total failure at momming and life-ing, your little one walks up to you and says I love YOU.
It's a moment. It's the thing that makes it all worth it. Congratulations! Your kid said I love you.

Just remember, we are our hardest critics and nine of ten times, we're rocking it. Our kids think we hung the moon even if they just laughed for fifteen minutes because we smell and look like stinky cheese hats. And you know, they're right. WE are pretty great.

So to all the Moms out there, keep on rocking it however you know best. After all, it's your circus, you do know it best! xoxo, happy Mother's Day!

Obligatory hot guy gif: