Sometimes I have a hard time being present in my own day.
Sometimes I’m so tired or stressed or lazy that I coast through, waiting for nap time and then bedtime, phoning in the interactions with my kids.
Sometimes I sit down with my toddler, baby in my lap, “driving” a car around, thinking of the million other things I should be doing–another load of laundry, changing diapers, sweeping, mopping, (let’s be honest) any general cleaning, picking up toys or shoes or socks or books or food or blankets, making dinner, etc, etc.
And, sometimes, my toddler asks me to crawl into my closet with her, where she’s been busy playing with my winter gear, and I actually say yes.
I pull the baby in with me–thinking that though there are no toys for her in here; there’s no space for her to crawl; and surely there’s something she shouldn’t be chewing on. I think about running away to clean my bathroom while they’re occupied. I think about at least organizing the closet we’re huddled in.
I watch her put on a hat, and she asks me to helps with mama-sized gloves. And she giggles, and talks to me, and I realize that this is what I should be doing.
I should be wrapping my husband’s shirt around the toddler like a dress, and I should be holding the baby’s hands as she stands and growls and laughs at her sister. I should be talking to my toddler about the lion that’s chasing us. (That damn thing finds us everywhere.)
Sometimes, I get so busy in the mechanics of staying home–all the duties and chores I should be doing to earn my keep–and I forget about the reason I stay home.
I’m here to teach my babies, and learn with them.
And, sometimes, I need to remind myself that it’s okay to just do that.
There will always be clothes to be washed, and messes to clean up, and errands to run, but my little ones won’t be little forever.
Hell, they won’t even be little for very long.
So my pre-New Year’s resolution is to be more present.
I’m going to try to soak up the toddler kisses and baby squeals and “mama, catch me”s while I can. Because who really cares if my house is a bit of a mess? At least we have fun in it.
Especially if I ply them with wine to forget about it.