Tuesday, June 17, 2014

"You're a muggle, Julie."

When Charles slams the cabinet doors on his fingers over and over, I wonder why he keeps doing it.

When Alice screams and doesn't get her way over and over, I wonder why she hasn't learned to stop screaming.

So, when I fight a million battles that I constantly lose every day, you'd think I would stop and wonder why I keep fighting. But, like an idiot, I keep fighting.

Maybe I keep fighting because raising babies into adults often feels like constant losing, and I grow so accustomed to losing that I don't even know when to stop and think, "Hey, in this situation, I should be winning the entire world."

Instead, I think, "Keep slamming the cabinet doors. Keep screaming. And keep up the good work, you son of a gun."

That, my friends, is lunacy.

Today I have been fighting nap time.  That's what my day has been centered on. One baby, one toddler, and dealing with their sleep patterns.

That is ridiculous.


I have fed them, changed them, done dishes, started laundry, and even straightened my hair today.  But I have other plans... plans that have been squashed by children resisting the beauty of sleep in one way or another.  This is not abnormal. In fact, this is a pretty normal day, yet for some reason every single day I think how strange it is that nothing is going according to plan. It has taken 2.5 years for it dawn on me that my plan stinks, which means I deserve no awards or pats on the back or anything that might imply I have a brain.

So, people, what if I stopped fighting it?  Would I be a bad mom? No. Would anyone die? No. Would anyone be mildly wounded? No. Would it cause a mess? Probably. Would I be able to clean up that mess? I don't know. And I don't care. Because I can't care. I can't care. I CAN'T CARE, I SAY! Doom on you for thinking I can care and keep my sanity at the same time.

So tomorrow -- or rather, now -- this is the actual plan: survival. I've been fighting the fact that having two very small kids means that I'm just over here survivin' and enjoying the process. Some evil House Elf put the idea in my head that I'm supposed to be a magician. Well, you know what, elf, I'm not. So shut up.

Now that we've established I'm a dumb human, this is my plan:
If my kids are awake: Hi, what's up, what do you need, what should we do, what can we learn?
If my kids are awake and don't care about my existence for a few seconds: Hi, dishes, how about you stop being dirty.
If my kids interrupt those dishes: Totally normal.  Let's do this.
If my kids are asleep: What can my brain do? Sleep? Neato, it's time to sleep. Do I have an ounce of energy? Special, how about a load of laundry.
If my kids fight sleep: Bring it on, cutest kids in life. We'll figure it out... even if it takes all.day.

Some moms are awesome, laid back, and don't even have to lay out a plan to not have a plan.  I'm clearly not one of those moms... and maybe I'm still awesome. Maybe. My hope is that this plan will actually allow me to get more done because my expectations are realistic and I'm not being weighed down by feelings of failure. After all, with my new non-plan, my success is now being measured by how well I can be with my kids and not how successful I am at being a witch when I'm actually a muggle.

So, here's to accepting that I'm not a magician and here's to discovering the power of powerlessness! I'll let you know how it goes.

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