Wednesday, May 22, 2013


This exact moment, begging to be frozen in time.

Sitting here, fragrance of toddler poo spread like a blanket on the inside of my nose and throat; dry heaves wondering if a green smoothie looks any different on the way back up.

Sitting here, heart beating an angry rhythm, watching a poop-covered tub-occupant clumsily wash himself with a bar of Daddy's soap; little chunks of number two bobbing in the wake.

Deep breaths, Mama, deep breaths.

Blood pressure slowly descending now. 
Initial fury at discovery of finger-painted masterpiece subsiding.

Canvas: crib
Medium: crap
Frequency: third time in as many months

Calming down now.
Calming down tubside while sitting on the throne, of all places. 
I love me some irony.

Nursing a baby, working through frustration with one available hand pecking words tumbling out, directing little puppeteers from room adjoining, and bathing a toddler covered hands, legs and cheeks (both sets) in greenish poo all while sitting on (sitting on, not using, mind you) an ugly 1970s greenish-gold toilet.

My life is less than glamorous.

And now I'm looking at my toddler, soap slipping between wrinkled fingers, getting away from little hands.  Fingers grasping, soap jumping.  Grasping and slipping and jumping.  And laughing.  Eyes smiling, squeals of delight, chubby cheeks all pushed up in million-dollar grins carved out of caked-on poo.

Frustration is lost.

How I love those poo-covered cheeks, and that poo-covered little boy who just yesterday was the nursing baby in my arms, and now uses manners and builds with "yegos" and is washing up all by himself with Daddy's green bar of soap.

And I look away for a moment, more words pecked out, and suddenly he's screaming, bubbly hands rubbing eyes all over.  Soap in eyes, stinging, hurting.  And guilt.  My poor baby, why on earth did I give you Daddy's soap?  Tear-free was far from my mind when I plopped you in that tub.

Rinsing and screaming and rinsing and screaming and shaky breaths drawn from still-sobbing lungs.  Mama makes it better, but Mama is so sorry she gave you that soap in the first place, little man.

I couldn't resist taking a picture. 
Call it payback if you will, but I have the feeling
this photo will pop up in the future.
Hour lost in scrubbing and playing and hair-washing screams that can never be avoided, and singing "scrub your toddler" songs.  And then drying and cuddling, wrapped in arms and a towel, I love on my sweet-scented barely-bigger-than-a-baby.  This wonderful, frustrating two-year-old, who knows his own mind and yet makes no sense at all; with the joy of discovering life dancing alive in his beautiful long-lashed blue eyes. 

And I know I'd scrub poo off him for a thousand years if he needed me to.

This is motherhood.  At its best, and at its worst.  This is my life, replayed over and over inside the core of each day coming end on end.  Anger, laughter, pride, fury, frustration, joy, guilt, and endless work, smiles, cuddles, love and wonder.  Always the wonder.

My heart overflows.

1 comment:

  1. Lots of smiles. Empathy that comes from experience!! Thanks for your eloquent words!