I just picked up about ten pounds of dog poop from the back yard. I’m estimating, but I think that’s pretty accurate. After all, it was less than my sixteen-pound baby but more than a five-pound sack of sugar.
I’m on intimate terms with the bodily functions of the majority of my household. I can tell you how Charles, Jamie, and Buster are feeling just by how often they’ve pooped or peed and what the consistency and color of their excretions were. And that is something I just never realized went hand-in-hand with motherhood. I mean, I wipe three asses in this household and physically pick up poop from another! Thank God Tony can handle his rear end himself, right?
The truly ridiculous thing about it is that, in teaching Charles how to take care of himself, he now wants to “help” me in the bathroom. This imitation is, of course, all part of normal preschool development, but it’s still weird. I can’t honestly think of the last time I went to the bathroom alone for any reason, but Charles wants to turn it into a party. He’ll open the door and ask, “Are you going poop, Mommy?” Then, he’ll say, “Tell me when you’re done, I’ll help you wipe.” Oh, sweetie. The last thing you want to do is volunteer to wipe someone else’s ass. Save up your turns for when you have kids.
That reminds me: is it in boys’ genes that they must take a long time in the bathroom? Seriously, Charles will sit for ages on the toilet, doing his business. Tony once said that sometimes it just takes awhile, but I don’t find that I ever need more than a couple of minutes. So maybe it’s just boys? By the time they’re teenagers, I will have to claim a toilet as mine and mine alone just so I don’t get locked out of all three toilets in our house at once for half an hour while they do their marathon poops. Sheesh.
I’ve been on the phone for most of the day, fighting with phone companies about getting phone and internet to our new office building. As it turns out, business phone/internet is LOTS worse than residential utility services but the same sort of scheduling: instead of “We’ll be there between 2 and 8 pm,” they say, “We’ll be able to do that between 2 and 8 weeks.” Well, that’s not f**king good enough. Our business runs on a website, internet-based credit card processing, and VOIP phone and fax lines. Without internet, we are screwed. I have been on the phone many times a day for weeks now. But today, today, I feel like crying each time I talk with someone. Our installation is currently set for December 6, and there is so little communication within the utility company that no one can get ahold of the construction people to escalate my order. Will we lose so many customers due to down internet and phone that we have to close? Only time will tell! Step right up and enjoy the ride!
Add to that the fact that the ONLY thing Charles wants for his birthday is a cake with dinosaurs driving cars and flying airplanes on it, and even though I thought I had this one covered, it fell through. At ALMOST the last moment. I have until Friday to make this happen, so I’m scouring the internet for a decent photo and working within the many suggestions people have given me, which include gluing toys together and taking a photocopy of a shirt.
What’s really hurting about that right now is that I just want to do this one thing that he wants for him. He couldn’t care less about new toys, but he wants dinosaurs driving cars and airplanes on his damn cake. It’s his exuberance for life that frequently keeps me afloat, and I want to make him happy. But no! In addition to all the crap at work and frustrated phone calls, I now have to scramble on the cake, something that was already on my “done” list! Oh, baby Charles. His dancing put a smile on my face today when nothing else could. I’ll get those dinosaurs driving cars, I swear.
Do you ever just feel ineffectual and unappreciated? For all I know of my family’s poop habits, I don’t get a whole lot of praise for what I do. And if you’re a mom, you know how much that is. Me, all I want is some extra love and thoughtfulness – the same sorts of things I give everyone else in my family – but for all the nice things I do for them, I’m feeling like there isn’t much done for me. Certainly no one is making me feel any better about the size of my ass, which, at my rate of weight loss, looks like it’s here to stay. I guess I have to wait until Mother’s Day to get any love and appreciation. But then again, probably not, because children don’t understand that holiday and Tony doesn’t believe in it.
And that brings me to the great unjust rule of parenting: your kids will never know how much you did for them or appreciate it until they have kids of their own. Mom and dad, I love you. Thank you for everything you did for me, every sacrifice you made. I get it now, and I know it was difficult. I’m sorry.