Wednesday, November 07, 2007


Motherhood seems to be a series of failures. I know it sounds like a horrible way to view something that should be full of such joy. Don't get me wrong - it is full of joy. It is what fulfills me more than anything in this world ever has.

What I think makes me a good mom is that most days, I'm OK with being a failure. Some would say that failure isn't the right term, but after almost 7 years in the trenches - I know it is.

My days consist of laundry that is just waiting to be flung from the dresser to the floor, dinner that is lovingly made that gets thrown on the floor (Emma) or critiqued more harshly than a fine dining establishment, vacuumed floors almost instantaneously covered in Cheerio crumbs, sinks sparkling clean just waiting for a coat of blue mint toothpaste, beds made to be unmade, windows waiting for fingerprints, toy boxes full just waiting to be emptied. Seriously - my day is about doing things just to have them undone.

It's easy to get caught up in this cycle, and I feel particularly susceptible to it now that I have three to look after. Some days I have to forcefully remind myself that it's not about this. That every day is not just another day of working hard and not accomplishing much.. everyday is about getting another start - about getting a clean slate to do better.

I'm not sure what the answer is. For me it's to involve the kids more and more in helping me with these labors. I have to also concentrate on the successes. The giggles, the hugs, the challenges. It's easy to lose sight of the big picture when there is ANOTHER pile of laundry waiting, but cuddling up at bedtime with three squeaky clean girls IS the prize. Listening to their voices sing "You are my sunshine" and beg for another round of "Golden Slumbers" makes me forget the mac and cheese clinging to the carpet.

1 comment:

laurie said...

"makes me forget the mac and cheese clinging to the carpet."

This piece made me nod emphatically in agreement, admire the beauty of your prose, get misty-eyed AND laugh out loud. It really, really spoke to me.