Learning how to be a mom is a unique challenge where only the strong survive. In my head I tell myself “This.Is.Sparta!” and then laugh so I don’t cry. So here is my story of “Oh the Places You’ll Go” as a Mom. (All quotations are excerpts from the book by Dr. Seuss)
Some days I wake up thinking:
“Today is your day! You’re off to great places! You’re off and away!”
but before I can act on that I spill the bottle of milk I had just extracted from my poor, sore, right tit. I hope baby Daniel doesn’t remember the “F-word” when he gets bigger.
It’s hard for parent’s not to get arrogant, sometimes we believe that
“Wherever you fly, you’ll be the best of the best. Wherever you go, you will top all the rest.”
To me my baby boy is the most beautiful, intelligent and smart little guy ever to show his face to the world. Amazingly enough he was born at 8 months with the ability to lift his head (briefly), suck, breathe independently and even make eye contact. So for me he is the best!
“You’ll come down from the Lurch
with an unpleasant bump.
And the chances are, then,
that you’ll be in a Slump.”
Today as I write this story I found myself in a slump. My regular writing job just wasn’t inspiring me to write. The cleaning girl didn’t show up. And Daniel seemed to pick up on my “slump” because he was kind of in a slump too by fussing and being more difficult. It’s hard to keep children from picking up on your feelings. “Unslumping yourself is not easily done.” So I must take a break, relax and do something I enjoy like writing this new blog story.
On other days I discover that little boys have fire hoses. And they know how to use them. Before we even left the hospital my husband got peed on. I have gone through 2 sets of pajamas in one night because
“it’s opener there in the wide open air. Out there things can happen and frequently do.”
and pee went everywhere. One night I was projectile pooped on and I couldn’t help but think
“when things start to happen, don’t worry. Don’t stew.
Just go right along. You’ll start happening too.”
These are the times when we laugh at our children to keep from crying.
“I’m sorry to say so
but, sadly, it’s true
that Hang-ups and bang-ups
can happen to you. “
I felt so terrible because I almost dropped Daniel on the floor one day in my hurry to get him off my shoulder due to spit up. I know, it’s vain. To think that I didn’t want to smell like sour milk all day while I was out visiting a farm.
With newborn babies you frequently find yourself in
The Waiting Place…
…for people just waiting.
Waiting for a train to go
or a bus to come, or a plane to go
or the mail to come, or the rain to go
or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow
or waiting around for a Yes or a No
or waiting for their hair to grow.
Everyone is just waiting.
Or just waiting around for the baby to wake up enough to feed. But then having “right tit latching problems.” Waiting around for baby to finish feeding. Or waiting at the hospital for our turn in the check-up line.
Sometimes you’ll even decide
“No, that’s not for you! Somehow you’ll escape all that waiting and staying.”
Those are the good days where everything works on time such as feeding, naps and getting my work done.
As a parent we seek to entertain, amuse and cajole smiles out of our kids because:
…the magical things you can do with that ball
will make you the winning-est winner of all.”
I felt like the winning-est winner the day that my baby smiled for the first time.
As parents we also worry a lot about anything.
“There are some, down the road between hither and yon,
that can scare you so much you won’t want to go on.”
When I get these days I call my mom or aunt and ask their advice.
“…on you will go
though the weather be foul
On you will go
though your enemies prowl
On you will go
though the Hakken-Kraks howl
Onward up many
a frightening creek,
though your arms may get sore
and your sneakers may leak.
“On and on you will hike
and I know you’ll hike far
and face up to your problems
whatever they are. “
Because as parents we don’t get to quit or give up. As parents our job is to make mistakes, learn new things and just take the ride. We reap the rewards alongside the sacrifices. We learn how to manage our own shortcomings while instilling good values and principles in our children even if that value is just to sleep, not fuss too much and eat.
“And will you succeed?
Yes! You will, indeed!
(98 and 3 / 4 percent guaranteed.)”
What is the magic formula to being a mother or a father? When we gaze into the faces of our children we want to be everything for them. When we make mistakes we feel like we are the worst ever. But those small successes and moments of triumph make it all worth while. Seeing my son studying the faces of his grandmothers or even the smile he gives me at 4:22 am when I am trying to get him to “put the titty in and suck!” makes me take a breath, start over and keep going. There is nothing so important nor special in life than being a parent even if its just to tell our children this piece of wisdom:
“KID, YOU’LL MOVE MOUNTAINS!
be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray
or Mordecai Ali Van Allen O’Shea,
you’re off to Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting.
So…get on your way!”