Something awesome happened to me this year and you’ll never guess what it was. No rad overseas holidays. No life-changing events (like births or illnesses). I didn’t win the lottery. I didn’t find out I was pregnant with quadruplets. There were no profound life realizations. I didn’t learn a new sport or win anything. I didn’t find a ‘job’ and I still haven’t paid back my student loans (oops). And, I certainly never got around to cleaning out that pesky guest bedroom closet!
This year was so awesome because… I lugged kids around on my hips and all the days melted together. I took children for umpteen trips to the potty and deciphered the reasons behind a million cries and complaints. I wiped noses, mouths and hands. I washed mountains of dishes and laundry, and cooked countless meals. I skillfully negotiated the unreasonable requests of a three year old and figured out how to hold a squirmy toddler in one hand with a million heavy bags + a bike in the other hand, while unlocking a door with my toes (not really, but it felt like that some days). I gave up ‘last bites‘ of meals to other little mouths and often held my pee for hours before I realized that I had made sure everyone else had gone to the toilet except myself! I declared war on mold and cockroaches! I took at least eight million sleep deprived yawning walks to the playground and responded to the questions of ‘What?‘ ‘Why?‘ and ‘How?‘ at least a thousand times every. single. day.
Do, I have dreams, goals and checklists? Of course I do! Do I dream about the day when I can walk into a grocery store and be able to finish my thoughts without being interrupted? Or, talk on the phone for more than two seconds without someone yelling or crying “Upppp mamamamama!” Of course! One day, I’ll go back to work and we’ll have enough money to buy another car and go out to eat whenever I don’t feel like cooking. One day, I will be able to buy lots of fresh shirts that are not stained, stretched or ripped. And, that primary school that I’ve been dreaming about opening… well, that will happen soon too.
While everyone was busy reflecting on their accomplishments over the year (as you do around the time of the new year), I realized that I was perfectly happy to have done what I did for the past 365 days. On the surface, it would appear that I have done ‘nothing’ with my time, but that’s not true! I was a pajama queen in all of my domestic glory! I don’t need to be ambitious or appear to be successful in somebody else’s eyes! (I’m not implying that it’s bad if women go back to work, it was partially by chance and partially choice that I stayed home). I’m ok with the fact that my main objective this year was just to be a ‘housewife‘.
No matter if a person has kids or not, or is a working parent or a stay at home parent, isn’t it ok to just be happy with what you’re doing at that moment? We certainly need a direction in life and it’s important to strive for improvements from within. But, scenarios change and people change. What we’re doing today will not be the same thing that we’re doing in another year or two… so why not enjoy what we have now!?
My list of New Year’s resolutions is long… really long. But, I know that some of those resolutions, for now, will just have to wait. These few years home with my kids are precious and fleeting. I’m not in such a huge hurry that I would want to wish this time away. The list of things I want to accomplish will be there forever. Whether things get crossed off of that list or not, there will always be more new ‘things‘ to accomplish. I’ll get to that list in my own due time. But, in the meantime, I’m going to enjoy the cuddles, the giggles, the silly nonsensical games and songs. I’ll even savor the tears and the fights and struggles too. I’m not in this to win anything. I’m just here to be here. There’s no ‘goal‘ to being a parent. It’s just something that I am. It’s a job that I take on as both light-hearted and serious, at the same time. I actually don’t mind that I spend the majority of my days answering to people who are no taller than my bellybutton… in fact… I really love it!
(Brownie points if you find any typos or grammar errors, please let me know)