laborofwonder

Where Whine Meets Wine

My Nametag


Have you ever had to give yourself a word that sums up everything you do and/or everything you are? You search tirelessly to find one word that culminates your very existence? Well, today I’ve attempted to do just that… I’ve poured over my emotional, creative, and cognitive ways. And this is what I’ve come up with…

If you do one, a few, or all of these things… you might be one too.

  • Insist that you can pick your child’s cry out of the mass hysteria of a summertime, lunchtime playground.
  • You actually can pick your child’s voice out.
  • At least one meal of the day consists of whatever your child(ren) didn’t eat.
  • You feel like a teenager sneaking out of the house when you go out past 8 o’clock.
  • You feel like you’re breaking curfew when you stay out past 10 o’clock.
  • Do things in quiet, so as not to disturb sleeping child(ren)…even when they’re not at home.
  • Do things in quit when no one else is home, just to remind yourself what quiet sounds like.
  • Find yourself saying words to other adults, in the way that your child(ren) say them. (Example, my mom still refers to ice cream as “arse cream” because that’s how my brother referred to it as a small child. I know, it’s a good one.)
  • Sway back and forth, as if rocking a child, even when your arms are empty.
  • Find yourself swaying when your arms are holding an inanimate object, as if it were a child.
  • Find yourself listening to kid’s songs, without your kids in the car.
  • Find your heart skipping a beat when you look in the backseat and only see carseats (without children in them), even though you left them home on purpose.
  • Find yourself singing kids’ songs, even when the kids aren’t around. (Hubbyman and I like to text each other the lyrics to a couple of kids’ songs randomly, because it ensures that the other party will then have to suffer through having that song stuck in their head for the rest of the day as well.)
  • Go shopping for an outfit for you to wear to *insert special occasion here* and walk out with clothes for the kids, and nothing for you.
  • Stand with arms crossed against your chest when another baby starts crying, in effort to prevent leakage.
  • Your partner that you used to refer to as a variety of “cutesy” names is now simply Daddy.
  • You’ve had a variety of nicknames over the course of your life, but the only word you respond to now is Mom (or a variation of this word).
  • You have a preference of which variation of the word mom is used. (Mama, mommy, ma, mom, madre, etc.)
  • You have slept in a toddler bed… and you are not a toddler.
  • Make sure to close the toilet’s lid and bathroom door behind you, even when you’re home alone.
  • You leave/put up baby gates, even when your baby is not there.
  • Spend hours packing your child(ren)’s clothes so that they have plenty of outfits and everything matches before a trip, only to get there and find that while your child(ren) has enough clothes to turn your weekend get away into a month long vacay, you forgot to pack anything for yourself.
  • You have any combination of these things in your purse at any given time: wipes, diapers, fruit snacks, cereal.
  • The bathroom is a place of sanctuary. (when you have someone else to keep an eye on the kid(s) while you’re in there catching up on your magazine subscriptions or taking a ridiculously long shower.)
  • Nap time is your favorite time of day.
  • Eye your sleeping child(ren) jealously.
  • Have to stay up till midnight to get anything done.
  • (Almost) always look like you just got off a red eye flight.
  • You think of your # of children in # of years like a soldier and their tours. (I did 3 tours in 4 years = I had 3 children in 4 years.)
  • Have experienced love in a way you never imagined and/or never thought possible.
Obviously, there are other things that define me as an individual, and not “just” a mother.  It is amazing the fun, silly, sleepless, ridiculous things that change when you go from a person who is mainly just responsible for oneself to someone who is responsible for the whole lives of someone (or or some two or three or more.).  So even though I’ve gone from someone with the uncanny ability to organize things to the Nth degree to someone who can realize they’d forgotten to turn the monitor on, only to have baby wake up seconds after (this happens all the time!), or hear one of my little voices in a crowd, on trips I never have all of my things, will rock anything you put in my arms, speaks toddler fluently, and you can frequently find me cleaning the kitchen floor at midnight…. I would not trade it for anything in this world. I am a mom, and I prefer Mama.

Dino, dino, dino- saur, dino, dino, dino-saur….racing day it’s racing day, today’s the day we race…Linny, Tuck, and Ming Ming too, we’re wonder pets and we’ll help you… this is the song that never ends, yes, it goes on and on my friends, some people started singin’ it not knowin’ what it was…

You are welcome.

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My Wish For You


While we are normally in the land of the cold and the frozen… two days ago we endured a 103 degree day, with lots of wind and humidity. Here I sit today, two days later in my boot slippers, sweatpants, and a sweatshirt. And I’m not hot. Granted, it will assuredly be warmer by the end of the day, but for now… sometimes I think the weather here is something of a joke God’s playing on all of us that have chosen to continue to live here through the cold, cold of the winter to the hot, hot summers.

Today while I’m trying to get things cleaned up before a)out of town company comes;  b) hubby leaves for his trip (let’s face it, life won’t get easier when he’s gone!); and c) I leave for a quick getaway (because there’s nothing worse than coming home to a mess)…oh I was saying, today, while trying to get things cleaned up quickly, I’m being followed. And it’s making really weird noises. Ok, so it’s Littlest E, and it’s kissing noises he’s making. Every time I turn around and look at him, he gives me his big toothy grin, followed by his screech of a laugh!  It’s adorable and oh so distracting. I mean, seriously, how am I supposed to not give him a kiss when he’s chasing me making kissing noises?! He’s also just learned to shake his head (as in like you would do if you were telling me no)… and now likes to do that anytime anyone says anything. I’m thinking his siblings may have given him the “head shake” a time or two… anyways, see what I mean about distracting? Just talking about him is distracting! (*chuckle* he’s so cute) So let me get back to where I was, or at least where I meant to be heading with this all… Littlest E will be 1 year in less than a month! (*sob*) and I cannot get over just how fast it went by!! I think the more children you have, the fast the littlest’s first year goes. I haven’t done any formal research on the subject, it’s just my humble opinion. So as I think about the last year and how fast it went it had me thinking about things I wish for him in the future. Things I wish for all of my children as they learn and grow and (*gasp*) become their own individuals, outside their relationship with me. So here is my quick list of ten things that I hope (and hopefully am doing more to make them reality than just hoping!!) for their lives:

1. I hope they are always willing to learn. Big things and small things alike. Learn. From me, because of me, and probably sometimes in spite of me.

2. I hope they learn the difference in doing something because it feels right and doing something because they know it is right.

3. I hope they always know that the unique, wonderful individuals they are…are exactly the wonderful, unique individuals they were created to be. Hopefully in less time than it took me to figure that out.

4. I hope they learn the value of laughter. It’s healing, it’s bonding, it’s life affirmations. Not just making others laugh (which I know they already know to do), but being able to laugh themselves. In hard times as well as good times.

5. I hope they always remember the adage of “You cannot change others, you can only change yourselves.” Even if they grow to dislike it out of annoyance as they grow, the way I may or may not have felt…before passing it on to my own children.

6. I hope they always know that God is bigger. (I should not ask God if He knows how big my storm is. I should be asking the storm if he knows how big my God is. -paraphrased because I can’t remember it exactly)

7. I hope they always feel beautiful but that they know that’s not where the real beauty and value lies; for themselves or for others.

8. I hope they grow knowing that their ideas are valuable and pertinent. And always worth exploring.

9. I hope they grow knowing and believing the importance of family and community. How to live in one, and be a part of one, successfully.

10. And I can’t help but add this, and mean it whole-heartedly… I hope they always love their mama. I hope that I have raised them in a way where they know that not only can they depend on me, but they want to.

11. Ok, I know I said 10, but I just wanted to add this in- That their dreams stay big and their worries stay small. And that they’ve enough of their father’s type A, can do personality that they can put it into action. With maybe some of my optimism thrown in.

*I also hope I’ll be able to handle it when I’m not their favorite person, when I’m not the one they choose to share their secrets with anymore… because right now, that sounds pretty devastating to me. Maybe at that point we’ll be ready to talk about foster care or adoption. That way I’ll always have at least one person in the house that likes me! Oh, I guess i’ll still have hubbyman… !! (*wink*)

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