My house has been a MESS lately. It’s been hard to keep up on since my child was born over two years ago, but harder recently because I’ve been sllllllllowly launching two businesses and because, dang, it’s been a really fun spring and summer so far. The mess = a sink (so) full of dishes, a case of diapers sitting in the middle of the living room, toys eVeRyWhErE, raisins eVeRyWhErE, garbage that needs to be taken out, food splatters on the entire wall behind where the toddler eating happens, toilet paper everywhere (its like he is practicing tp-ing!), etcetcetc.
It gets me a little down I guess. It’s not relaxing to come home to a mess. But it was relaxing to have a picnic yesterday evening. It was relaxing to go to a new spot in a giant local park – a spot I’ve never been to. It was relaxing to go get an amazing pint of ice cream and continue the picnic in the warm car, where my child pretended to drive the car and climb all over our friend, who played DJ letting us in on an interesting new band (dang I’m so out of the loop), all while I people watched (we parked in an awesome spot!) from the back seat. I wouldn’t trade that evening for a clean house.
It reminded me of what I used to tell myself when my baby was first born. I would see all these other babies with expensive things: muslin swaddle blankets, top of the line strollers, super nice diaper bags, all the latest wooden toys that are guaranteed to make a child a genius. And I felt a little inadequate and a little bit jealous. I realized though, that all my baby wanted was me. He did not care one bit what the names Aden & Anais or Bugaboo meant. He just wanted me. I was his favorite swaddle. I was his top-of-the-line stroller.
I’m trying to remind myself of that now as I continue to provide for us and in more creative and freeing ways. It’s scary, it feels a little [or a lot] risky sometimes. But I’m giving him a more relaxed, present, calm mom. And that is what he’s going to remember when he gets older. Not whether our place was award winning tidy or full of the nicest things and a mom strung out from making that all happen. He does not care about my job title. He cares that he had a mom who had fun with him, who looked in his eyes as much as possible, who was not strung out from stress and exhaustion. There are a million ways to be this kind of mom and I think I’m zeroing on on how to be my version of that.