This weekend Adam and I ate our Wheaties and thought we should do some housework. We decided to stain the deck, two pillars we have out front, trim some trees, and then paint our dining room, living room, and hallway. I also got a wild hair up my butt and thought I should deep clean the whole house (I only got the floors and kitchen done but whatever). With my front area of my house being super clean and my husband at Lowes with the kid I wondered what my house would look like without her toys all over the place. So I put them away. Kind of. I hid them behind the couch. Just to see.
It felt refreshing!
Two seconds later…
It felt awful.
I was instantly sad. I felt empty.
How pathetic, I knew the toys weren’t really “gone” but I still felt so terrible. I quickly put them all back to make it feel like home again and ran to the desk and ripped out some paper and jotted down what was going through my head.
I used to think how ugly kids toys were. The bright yellow, blue, and red colors. The ugly plastic that turned a weird beige color, collected dust in the corner and how loud and annoying they were. I told my self that I would be the mom who had only balls and wooden toys for their kids. Books, and blocks. Visually appealing toys. Totally achievable right? Rookie mom mistake. The louder the toy, the brighter the colors, the bulkier it is, Kerrigan falls in love. So here I am, with bulky, colorful, and loud toys, and I am in love too. I see them and I remember times that Kerrigan had with them. The smile she gave me when she used her teeth to play the piano, the time she flipped over her push toy and needed many, many snuggles and two episodes of Mickey to feel better, or when she discovered that you can knock over a tower of blocks and mom or dad will stack it back up for you so you can do it 30 more times.
How lucky am I that I can have these toys in my living room? How shallow of me to ever think these toys are an eye sore or clutter when some people would give anything to look at these toys because they have a child who plays with them.
Kerrigan turns one in two days. Lately I’ve been reflecting on the past year.
I never thought I would love and hate bedtime. 6:30 pm and Kerrigan is sleeping peacefully and I finally have a chance to relax, get things done. Should be great right? After about a half hour, suddenly I miss her. I’m moving through the house with such ease and speed that I think, “why didn’t I get this done during the day?” Oh, cause I have 25 pounds of drool chasing me around all day trying to walk, eat everything, and be read the same damn kitty book over and over.
I love her handprints. Her handprints are on EVERYTHING. We were painting the living room and I noticed little dots on the floor behind my ladder. Her toes had gotten into some paint and were leaving little prints at the base of my ladder where she was standing watching me. I hesitated before wiping them up and wondered what would happen if I just left the dots there. How long would they last? I wipe away her handprints weekly on our glass door, along with some slobber and drool. But I love it. I love it all. Someday it wont be there, and if I really think about it, it’s a very empty feeling.
I accept anything Kerrigan gives me. This applies to hugs, kisses, bitch slaps, bites (ok we are nipping this one in the butt) toys, and food. Yeah, lets talk about that food. Kerrigan is so gracious with sharing her food with me, sometimes she even gives me the food right out of her mouth. She’s SO giving, I know. I do it for the moment after she shoves slobbery hands and wet food in my mouth and she claps her hands and smiles as if she just gave the greatest gift ever. I gag out a “thank youuuu, can mama have more” and we proceed to do it again. Other times she’s less gracious and only gives me the food she finds on the floor and after a quick hair and dirt examination I allow her to place it in my mouth and once again relish in the delight it brings her.
My spidey skills are killer. I can be whipping up a souffle, talking on the phone, doing a wing liner and still be able to give her a bottle. Okay, I lied. I’ve never made a souffle, but I can be 10 feet away and at her side in .5 seconds to catch her as she topples head first off of the couch. Or, I can keep hold of her as she tries to repel off my body. I can throw 25 pounds into the air and catch it and ignore the shooting pain I get in my back, because it makes her laugh damnit.
I can smell poop from a block away, anticipate her every move, nip a chocking hazard out of her hands before she can even has thought about eating it, and wake 30 seconds before she does in the middle of the night.
I know, I know. These skills are all super cool.
What could possibly be cooler than poop smelling?
This past year I have been able to love another human so unconditionally, so passionately, and so fiercely that it brings me to tears. I can look at my child and tears of some feeling that I cannot even put into words comes over me and I’m left speechless. My child gives me a feeling I’ve never felt before.