Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Where my treasure lies

I got royally pissed yesterday. SEE, I was trying to put some polish on my oh-so-wise words about in-season produce and various ways in which it can be stored for future consumption, thus saving tens of THOUSANDS of pennies and possibly the ENTIRE WORLD because a Mason jar can be reused indefinitely, whereas cans of corn from the supermarket must be manufactured and then (hopefully) recycled into something new, and blah blah blah…and my Denizens were making me a Crazy Person.

Every eight seconds, it was something. She’s touching me. She’s not touching me. Yeah, well, it IS a problem, we’re supposed to be playing TAG! She won’t give me the DS. She won’t let me have my latch hook kit back. Well yes, technically, I traded it for the Mickey Mouse cross-stitch kit, but it turns out that cross-stitch is hard and I don’t wanna do it anymore. I’m hungry. I’m thirsty. I don’t want water or milk, I want Kool-Aid. Or lemonade. Or something-else-aid. Whatcha doooooooin’, mommy? Mommy? MOMMY? WHATCHA DOOOOOIN’?!?!

I feel as though I’m just waiting for summer to be over, so I can get back to my life, you know? Waiting for school to start, so that I can get back to business.

Boo Bug bounced into the room and started nattering on about something inane as I was trying to figure out which box was supposed to be checked on the bus form for Captain Adventure, and I snapped at her.

Which is a lot like kicking a puppy.

And then, as I was hugging her and trying to explain that gee whiz, I’m only a person and you guys have been pick-pick-picking at me not just all day today, but all day every day for the last two months, it struck me: Isn’t it ironic that I’m annoyed with the children for keeping me from taking care of the business that is all about ensuring that those same children are kept in food, shelter and clothing?

They are, after all, kind of the point.

They are the things I wanted most. They’re my hope, and my reward. The greatest gift I’ve ever gotten, and my greatest gift to the world – my masterpieces. They are my sacred duty, my delight, my pride and joy.

Ironic that they can irritate the skin right off my nose, huh?

Parenthood is full of these kinds of minefields. There’s the dewy-eyed expectations we build up from the time we’re young, and then the harsher realities.

Sure, there’s still all the unicorns and rainbows and giggles and cuddles and lovey-dovey blah blah blah, but there’s also retching noises from the top frickin’ bunk at 2:15 in the morning. There’s an autistic five year old bellowing, “MOMMMMMY!” while you’re on the phone with a potential client – now a lost client. There’s a constant stream of messes, and there comes a point where you swear you’re going to just belt the next kid who says, “Sorry, Mommy!” – because seriously, I’d like a lot less sorry and a whack more not offending in the first place.

But they’re still my pride and joy. I’d rather live my life in second-hand jeans eating homegrown meals with them than, well, anything else without them.

They’re my real treasure. I’m already the richest woman I know, and no matter what may happen financially, those riches are mine for keeps.

Now, if I can just remember that when I’m back in the trenches trying to get Something Important done, and then somebody comes skidding in with their hair on fire and a sibling or two hot on their heels and starts their side of the tale with the phrase, “I wasn’t even doing anything!”


Steph B said...

So very true! It's amazing how you can love them so very much and still want to sell 'em on eBay for a nickel on a daily - nay, hourly basis. Of course as a homeschooler, I have the opposite issue - I spend my days praying for school to end so they can go do something else, instead of "Mom, can you explain this? Mom, do I have to write three whole paragraphs? Mom, I don't know how to spell _____"! And yet I wouldn't have it, or them, any other way. Thanks for the reminder.

Anonymous said...

Oh I could hug you for posting this.

Especially today.

Kali said...

Therewith the tale of my summers... Thanks for reminding me to laugh at the things that drove me so crazy almost every blippin' second of the endless summer 'vacation' (HAH! not *my* vacation!) that are now finally over now that they have all grown up and out.

I can't fathom why I miss those times so much... but I do.

Rena said...

It's such a crazy ride, this Mama love. We're human so we get frustrated and crazy, but we're mothers so we ADORE the creatures who are making us batty.

Ms. Packrat said...

Sorry, I know Captain Adventure has special issues, but my parents were both in grad school (Dad sent by Army) when I was about the age of Eldest and sib was BooBear's age and there is no way that we would have been permitted to run roughshod over parental studies like that. I think your kids need to respect your time and your office for at least some designated periods of the day - even if you start out with a timer set to 15 minutes at a time to start.

Science PhD Mom said...

Would a timer work for Captain Adventure? Especially with the whole "putting food on the table" thing, it seems maybe the older sibs could help enforce a set quiet time for Mom in her office? I know it might be crazy talk--our kids certainly cannot grasp the concept of "Daddy is working" when he's on the phone, but then again my kids are younger than yours. I totally agree with you though, they drive you INSANE and yet you love them SO MUCH! I just remind myself of how many people say I will look back and miss this time with them.