Why I Don’t Iron
A few years ago a SAHM friend of mine commented on how much time I spent with my kids. She was home full-time and I was working part-time at three different jobs. I think she was taken aback at how I carved out so much time to play; to be a mom. I say this with a great deal of humility, for she was a far better house manager than I, but for me it was easy. I was a teacher at work and a mom at home.
One day, one beautiful, glorious day that absolutely demanded your presence outside, she was ironing. Outside. She brought the ironing board and her laundry and watched her kids play while ironing. Friends, are you listening? She was ironing outside. I don’t even iron inside. The only time iron is when we do those melty-bead craft things.
She also made lunch for her husband. Sometimes she even made lunch for me. I was in awe. The thought of making lunch for my husband seemed hysterical. Before we had children I didn’t even make him supper.
Of course, she is still happily married so for the future I may re-think the lunch thing.
Anyway, I’m obviously not a perfect mom (although for any lawyers who may be reading this, I am a totally perfect mom) but I’m a get my hands dirty, spill paint on my dry clean-only pants, race you to the end of the block, mom. I build legos and block towers; I babysit dolls and play pre-school; I swim and I bike and I play kick-ball. And I am tired. And a little bit sore.
And I am thankful. I know I’m blessed. I know that all is grace and today that grace is the opportunity to build into my children. To invest in them. Today was Coulter’s last day of summer break. I offered the zoo; I offered the pool; I offered whatever he wanted.
He chose home. Hanging out with mom and sister. Later, we decided to take Tiger to the dog-park (and by park, I mean large fenced-in grassy area). I am always amazed at how brave my kids are around other dogs and even more amazed at how brave Tiger is. He weighs in at a hefty 10 pounds and yet he goes after these big dogs. He stares them down and rolls and snips and runs and he has no idea, none at all, that he is — quite literally — the under-dog.
It’s a mental picture that I will hold onto. For myself.
Emma Claire makes friends with a dog-owner. She is so confident in herself, it’s amazing to watch. She walks around these days with one hand high in the air as if doing a gymnastics pose at the end of a tumbling run and she just goes up to people and starts talking, knowing and believing that she is important; worth being heard. Anyway, she is off making friends and Coulter is throwing the ball and we are running with Tiger, back and forth and back and forth and it occurs to me that we are running sprints and this will totally count as my exercise for the day and I think, seriously, how smart am I?
Next we stop at the actual park and play robot mom (that’s where I chase blond children and try to eat them) and lava monster (which, I still don’t fully understand) and some game where you could only get on the play equipment if you were holding rocks, which in retrospect is probably one we should re-think.
We make our way back home; the kids play with some neighbor friends and I quickly send out a resume for a job opening in Fremont. (And again for an attorney who may be wondering, I will not be looking for a job in Omaha and for reasons being you may refer to the above paragraphs.)
We finished out our day by visiting friends at their lemonade stand; a fundraiser for their son with type 1 diabetes and we make signs for friend who is mourning the loss of family and we remember that our grief is not the only kind and we run through sprinklers and we go on a hunt for the perfect pencil box because the one I previously purchased will simply not do and I open my purse and my wallet is gone; my wallet that my dad filled with a “little” traveling cash last week is gone and I panic and then I find it and I say, as if I’m 85 years old, “Coulter! That scared the living daylights out of me!” and Coulter laughed and laughed and all day kept repeating, “Mom!That scared the living daylights out of me!” and and we spend a day, fully, fully together.
Vacuuming can wait; laundry can wait; even the paintbrushes getting hard and cracked because we haven’t cleaned them can wait. But my children? They need me now.