Now, I don't want to come across as your typical American, trying to start a fight or create divisions or add any fuel to the so-called "mommy wars", but this quote irks me. Good moms can definitely have sticky floors, messy kitchens, laundry piles, and dirty ovens. (Seriously though, are people out there actually concerned with the state of their ovens? That wasn't even on my radar. It is now.) But good moms can also keep up with laundry, sweep their floors, get pissed off by endless clutter, get tired of stepping on Legos, etc, etc. Basically, good moms can have a clean house too. It doesn't mean the children are any less loved. Maybe the mother is a bit OCD and cannot simply sit and enjoy her children whilst staring at an entire box worth of Chex that has been crushed into the carpet. God knows I can't. I need to clean that shit up. And right now. But I can't vacuum unless I get all the toys off the floor first. Let me put them back into the proper bins because, ya know, God forbid any of the car toys be mixed in with Legos (the horror!), or puzzles pieces not be reunited with their respective boxes. While I'm in Sam's room, let me go ahead and rearrange these diapers and refill the wipes. I should definitely weed through his clothes because I know he's got a size 18mo shirt in here somewhere that needs to be donated, and I don't know who thought that stacking these books HERE was a good idea, because clearly they need to be neatly shelved THERE. I'll just separate some of the baby books from the story books so it looks neater. I haven't dusted in here in quite some time. Let me go get the Pledge. Oh wait, was I vacuuming? I should do that first before the toys reappear into the living room again.
Can you see how living with me is so fun? I'm not always so scatter-brained and concerned with order and neatness. Let's take the past week, for example. We were stuck in our house for a solid WEEK. (If you want the full details of what that can do to a woman, email me and I'll share with you privately. But it's not pretty.) While the children were busy whittling away at my sanity, I was not really giving two shits about the state of the house. Why put all these toys away? I know we'll be stuck inside all day tomorrow- may as well save them the time and hassle of dumping them all out in the morning. But the past few days, the sick fog has lifted. Even the smog has simmered down a bit and we were able to go out. Upon returning home though, I had some problems. Uh, WHO made this MESS?!
Earlier this morning, I had the intense desire to scatter crackers and juice boxes throughout the house and then lock myself in my (equally messy) room. So I just sat around and stared at it for a while. Wondering who was going to clean this mess. Then I realized that since Steve is gone (he's in the field for training), it probably fell on me. Ugh. Being the adult in charge can really have its downsides. (Unless I make the call that we're having cereal for dinner. Then it's awesome.)
First of all, I know the destruction could be worse. Secondly, my children have some weird fascination with taking all of my (clean) undies out of the drawer, stringing them around their necks like scarves, and then taking them all off and throwing them on the floor. Thirdly, when Steve saw the pictures of the destruction (accompanied by a text that sounded something like, "SAVE ME, I'M BEING SWALLOWED ALIVE"), his first reaction was, "You're doing crafts?" Ha. Apparently I should do that more often since that was the take-away from the entire scene of death and destruction.
All of that madness is on top of the laundry that I haven't done all week and dishes in the sink. It makes me twitchy just thinking about it. But since the walls in our house are made of very thin cardstock, I don't do chores during naptime, lest I disturb the sleeping cherubs and have an early end to the peace and quiet. So now I write to you, dear Internet, to tell you that if you are one of those moms who has a messy house, God bless you for being able to look past it all and just be with your kids. I feel like that's almost a talent. And for the moms who just can't be fully present and clear-headed without knowing that everything is in its place? You're doing just fine too. Your kids are watching and learning and probably mimicking your every move. "No MYER the blocks don't go in that bucket! Put them in HE-YUR!"
There's no real resolution to this post, I guess. I'm still in the middle of cleaning my house today, just taking a naptime break to sit on the couch and wonder how I let it go this long without a good scrub. Here's to keeping it real!