JUST A MOM
“You’re just a stay at home Mom? Don’t you get bored?” I raised my eyebrows, as I looked at my twenty-three year old acquaintance wondering if she was serious. Her hazel eyes, perfectly lined with black liquid liner, stared at me imploringly, and I suddenly realized her innocence on the subject of children, maintaining a home and raising a family. Poor beautiful nitwit, she had no idea what she had just asked me. I turned my attention toward her flawless apparel, shiny manicured nails and her purposefully messy bun and was embarrassed as I quickly remembered my own disheveled appearance. Why is it so impossibly hard to look presentable after you have children? In order to understand all that goes under the title of “Mom”, you simply must be one.
Mornings come extra early at my house, as my four year old son, Eli is a true early bird and loves to include the entire household in his morning rituals of watching Transformers and playing car crash with his 10,000 Matchbox cars. Pulling myself out of my soft, warm bed while the sky is still black to make waffles and coffee is sometimes such a huge task, but knowing that hot, steaming coffee will soon be in my Hogwarts coffee cup, keeps my body moving. I put on my glasses and pull my hair back into a plastic hair clip and reluctantly start my day. My long, long day.
I may still, technically, be considered a newlywed, as my husband and I celebrated our fifth anniversary in April, but my drawer full of of sexy, lacy lingerie has long since been neglected for a plain blue tank top and my trusty grey cotton pajama pants, which happen to have pockets, because you’ll never know when you might need a Kleenex or a tube of lip balm.
Once I have packed lunches and backpacks and chauffeured my two boys to school, I often take my two year old daughter with me to the park for a three mile walk. This peaceful, quiet time between us girls, is such a nice way to really start the day. After our walk , I feel rejuvenated. Not only revived physically, but spiritually, as I have found that early morning walks are a perfect time for meditation with the Lord. “And rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, he departed and went out to a desolate place, and there he prayed.” Mark 1:35
Once we return home, breakfast, more coffee and endless piles of colorful laundry await us. Dusting, sweeping, vacuuming, dishes, toilet scrubbing, watering the plants, organizing toys, making beds and then it is time for lunch. While Scarlett naps, I usually like to take a moment to check my email and work on some writing. As long as the task is a quiet one, I will be okay, as my daughter is a light sleeper.
After Scarlett wakes up from her nap, it is time to get my two boys from school. After I get Scarlett dressed, I normally will load a couple trash bags into the back of the car, to drop off at the dump on the way to the school. After picking up the boys and dropping off the trash, it is time to head to my Mom’s house, as that is where homework time typically commences, while we all enjoy a late afternoon snack and find out how school went. Once homework is done and the snacks have been devoured, it is time to head home to start supper preparations and to fold the last load of laundry from the dryer.
Once supper is cooked, my husband is home from work, everyone has eaten, dessert has been gobbled up and at least one drink has been spilled, it is time to clear the table and clean the kitchen. Once all proof of supper has been put away, the counter tops have been wiped down, the dishwasher has been loaded and my kitchen sparkles, it is time for baths.
Bath time is a fun time for the kids, as they love lots of bubbles and deep water to “swim” in. After baths and cuddling on the couch with a warm blanket, it is “night night” time. Adjusting blankets, finding baby dolls or favorite tractors, reading a story or making a new one up on the spot, prayers and a few “Mama, just one more story” and “night night” time is complete.
Now, that the kids are in bed and finally quieted down, it is time to get a steamy cup of coffee and sit on my comfy, overstuffed couch with a fluffy fleece blanket over my crossed ankles. Now, is the time that I can catch my breath . I can relax and just be. I think back on all of the sleepless nights that I have spent in a rocking chair, as I cradled a fevered baby in my tired arms. I remember the pride that I felt as I watched my sons recite the pledge to the American flag. The tears that I shed while I was with my children during their vaccinations, skinned knees, bumped heads, hurt feelings and pinched fingers. I recall the shining eyes and looks of awe on Christmas morning, as stockings were opened and laughter filled the air. The looks of pride that came across my children’s faces as they presented me with custom, handmade artwork. I remember the first time I laid eyes on each of my three beautiful babies and the overwhelming sense of fulfillment, joy and love that came from my very first moments with each of them.
“By day the LORD commands his steadfast love, and at night his song is with me, a prayer to the God of my life.”
So, I look back at my acquaintances hazel eyes and I smile inwardly as well as outwardly, as I answer her question. “Yes, I am a stay at home Mom. No, I am never bored.”