Motherhood is messy. Things are covered in spit up. You may not have showered today, or yesterday. Your babies might be covered in food. Your house hasn’t been ‘clean’ since before there were babies. And it’s okay. Try to imagine yourself at 75, looking back on your life. Do you think you’ll remember that day that the dishes did not get done and that you hadn’t dusted in weeks? (Did you know people clean their baseboards?! Or take the vents out of the floor and off the walls and wash those?!) What you’ll remember is the time you spent with your children. It won’t matter that your hair and makeup weren’t done or that everything wasn’t in it’s place. It won’t matter that some stranger on some social media site that probably won’t still exist seemed to be handling things better than you were.
My current struggles are seeing other people’s 9 month old babies eating pancakes and other actual solid foods. My babies still just eat purees, because when I give them anything thicker or more solid (avocado, anyone?) they gag. Gagging is normal until they learn what to do with it, but it scares the bajeezus out of me so they might just be on a puree diet forever. I mean, juicing and smoothie drinking is a thing, right? My babies don’t hold their own bottles. Our Early Intervention Physical Therapist seemed concerned about that at their last appointment. What I didn’t tell her was that I have TWO babies – I’m pretty sure she knows that part – but that I don’t have a ton of time to sit around and help them learn how to hold their bottles. Feeding would take an hour or more then. So I hold their bottles for them, because it’s easier. It’s quicker. But I guarantee that at some point, probably before they’re 5, they’ll learn how to hold a cup by themselves. When was the last time you saw a kid who couldn’t drink out of a cup on their own? Please tell me that’s not a thing. I mean, they can put their own spoon in their mouths so I’m pretty sure they can figure out a cup at some point. We have two different kinds of sippy cups, they can hold them and sometimes get them to their mouths, but we don’t use them often. I’m working on it though since she seemed to think it was super-duper important.
I’ve come to accept that my house will never look as clean or as put together or styled as other people on social media, because A) They’re showing one piece of a room in a picture, so I’m hoping the rest of their house is a shit hole B) I have twins and dogs and carpet and too much stuff in a too little house and C) I just do not have the energy or give enough shits to care about it. I have threatened to break out the sledgehammer to remove my breakfast bar because it.collects.everything! My husband says I can’t remove it, and I wouldn’t have the motivation anyway, so it will continue to collect mail and paperwork and toys and cleaning supplies and sometimes dirty diapers (usually only pee-filled ones, ha!).
My Christmas tree is still undecorated, though my husband put the lights on it the other night. Our stockings are hung, but that’s about it. My Christmas cards are not yet mailed. I haven’t made any cookies, or salt dough ornaments, or fresh greenery wreaths, or fancy faux-calligraphy leaves to use as name tags on all of my gifts, or wrapped most of my gifts, or made an advent calendar. All of these things I totally meant to do. I had a really great idea to use my artifact uprising prints to make an advent calendar to hang on the wall in the shape of a giant Christmas tree. I wanted to post gift guides showing the coolest things
I Santa got for the babies. None of that got done, yet. Martha Stewart, I am not.
What I’m doing instead is changing babies, holding baby bottles, feeding babies, trying to get babies to stop crying, trying to get babies happy. Trying to get babies all set up to play with their toys. Oh, you don’t like that toy today? How about this one? No? This? No? Here’s the wipes container, play with that. Sitting on the chaise lounge to catch my breath. Trying to get babies to stop crying again. Are you hungry? Tired? Do your teeth hurt? Are you bored? Are you getting sick? Why haven’t you learned how to talk already to tell me what you want? Just tell me what you want! Repeat, all day long.
And then the babies smile or laugh or say something or make kissy sounds or blow bubbles and I realize that nothing else matters. I’m doing exactly what I’m supposed to be doing. And so are you. So forget about comparing yourself to others. Let go of the idea in your head that you can be everything to everyone and just be a mom to your kids and let that be enough. It is enough. You are enough.