There are a lot of mamas out there in the interwebs that say they just want to "keep it real." They tell funny stories of poop, puke, and permanent markers. They constantly talk about going to the bathroom with an audience and "starving" kids that are suddenly full at dinner time. Most of these stories crack me up because they are real and things like this do happen...often. I don't have a problem with these folks at all. I enjoy them. The issue is the constant talking about it. The constant complaining about the hard stuff, the gross stuff, the I-just-want-a-shower-for-mother's-day stuff. Lately I've felt the need to just say it: being a mom isn't that annoying.
In fact, most of the time it's downright awesome. I am constantly and unconditionally loved by my two earthlings. They say things that are HIL-ARIOUS. They have great insight on life. Sometimes they are annoying, it's true. But so am I and so is my husband sometimes (sorry, honey). Still, it is mostly awesome. Here's why:
1. There is constant entertainment. Sometimes this is hard because you are tired. I get it, but I can't tell you how many times Darren and I break out in belly laughs over something our kids say or do. Whether they're yelling, "Get this ship out of here!!!" and we hear another less appropriate word. Or they call peacocks, "cocks" and have a miner obsession with them so they yell, "COCK!!!" randomly and persistently in public places. Or they make up songs and dances for only you to hear. I am constantly entertained by my kids. It is constant, which can be hard but there aren't very many dull moments.
2. You care less about what people think. This might take a while to happen - certainly everybody has an opinion when you first have your first baby. [Make sure you buckle them in their car seat this way, she/he should eat/sleep this much, you should feed your baby this, you should breastfeed, don't use a pacifier, I would never use my cell phone around my baby.] After a while, you figure out you are doing what's best for you and your kids. You get into a groove of how to be a mom and even though you never completely have it figured out, you care less about the Judgey-McJudgersons out there. [Especially that parent that gives you side eyes at the park while your second-born has a miner meltdown because you took the granola bar completely out of it's package. The travesty. It's okay, mamas, it happens.] Since becoming a mom I've gotten really good at smiling and nodding my head when people get too forceful about their opinions on a wide-range of topics - politics, vaccinations, public school, discipline...everything. (Side note: moms, can we please stop posting articles about whether or not you circumcise your boys? It's getting inappropriate. Our children are one day going to be teenagers and grown adults and will have their mother's social media to thank for the world knowing about their penis. Not cool. It's getting weird.) Anyway, I digress...
3. There is constant love. Nothing makes me feel more loved and wanted than my kids. They need me all the time. It can feel draining but if I really think about it, I'm not drained, I'm overflowing. Bursting at the seems. I don't always have the energy to contain all the love and wants and needs but I don't think I'm always meant too. Kids not only know how to love hard, they forgive easy when I'm not my best. That makes me feel even more loved.
4. They teach you things about life. The parents of two of Isaiah's friends passed away a couple weeks ago. It was both unexpected and tragic - shocking, really. I worried about how to explain it to him without fully explaining it. I wanted him to know that they had passed away but not scare him about it or cause him to worry. When Isaiah brought it up, we asked him if it made him sad and he said, "My friends didn't die though so that's good." Yep. That is good. There's nothing that made the situation better or right but Isaiah reminded me that the kids are alright...a silver lining I forgot to remember. This just scratches the surface of what my kids have taught me. They remind me of the good in this world, because there is still so much of it. And they've taught me just how much God loves us by simply knowing how much I love them.
5. You get to be a kid again too. This is my favorite. I get to spend summer running through sprinklers, going to splash pads, and laughing in the wave pool. I get to skip rocks at the beach and build sandcastles on the daily. I eat popsicles and Cheetos...be jealous. I hunt for worms and build mud pies. I tell knock-knock jokes and dance in the kitchen. At Christmas, the magic of Santa Claus comes to life. I get to jump on trampolines and teach my kids how to climb trees. Just this morning I have been a doctor, a princess, a giraffe, a superhero, and their parent. Being a mom is actually quite fun if you let the kid in you out.
Some days I really look forward to bedtime. Some days I want to be alone to nap or shower or pee. Some days I really wish they would just ask dad for anything...for once. But being a mom isn't that annoying. It is mostly awesome and should always be celebrated.