Wednesday, March 14, 2012
The best freakin advice I've ever given.... so far.
Your kids are going to leave you. They are going to grow up, go to college, and if you have done your job correctly, your fairly well adjusted children will figure out what makes them happy in life and do their best to get it. I think part of the reason that I keep having all these kids is to postpone the day in which the last one will drive off to college. When that day comes, I will either rock back and forth in the fetal position, begging them to stay, or drop them off in my brand new Audi convertible (my future 50th birthday present, complete with huge red bow, preferably sparkly) and scream, "See ya at Thanksgiving!" and head off to the airport to some exotic location with Mr. Wonderful.
The point is that we owe it to ourselves as people, not just moms, to examine the lives we are living and ask, "Who the hell are we?" We are moms; yes, and that is an extremely important job, whether you are a stay at home mom, a working mom, or some combination of the two. However, you are also a person. A person with interests, a love life, and goals and dreams outside of potty training your toddler. Who are you?
The best advice I have ever gotten first sounded like it was coming from a crazy person. This person, whom I dearly love, told me, "Put your husband first." Ehh what? Your children are helpless, little clones of you who need help clothing themselves and learning how to act like civilized human beings. Your husband is pretty hot, but probably has the ability to annoy you more than your children, and definitely should be able to bathe, feed and clothe himself.
Looking back, however, this advice makes all the sense in the world. Your kids are going to leave you one day, and if you spend every second of every day devoted to them, you are going to find yourself with a pretty empty life while you wait the 10 - 15 years between college and when you can babysit your grandchildren (and tell your children how they are doing every single thing wrong). You had better keep up some type of healthy relationship with that guy who falls into bed exhausted next to you each night, or you will wake up next to a stranger.
Now believe me, I am tired. In the last year I have gotten married, taken college classes, had a baby, got pregnant again. bought The Money Pit, and sent Princess Particular off to kindergarten. There are days where Mr. Wonderful and I don't see each other, and that's when he actually is in town and not traveling for work. At any given time, we have a running list of about 40 things that we need to talk about immediately, and add things to the list faster than we take them off. However, we still try. Mr. Wonderful has a deep passion for craft beer, so I try them all, even the nasty ones and listen to him talk about hops and triple blah blah and fruity whatevs. He knows that I have a major obsessions with coupons, so he goes every Sunday and gets me four newspapers so I can cut them out while having my coffee. He also listens to my endless rambling about the dish soap and shampoo and lifetime supply of sponges that I got for $.40, and believe me, I get freakin excited about free shampoo.
So, even though raising kids takes a lot of work, maintaining a worthwhile relationship with your hubs takes even more work. Because it's easy to say, next year we will do________, go_______ and try_____. But there will always be the need for plumbers, travel baseball teams, and buying stupid homeowner shit such as landscaping; wanna know what I say to that? Smack your guy on the ass, steal his credit card, and book an adventure neither of you have been on. The bills will be there when you get back, and if you are like me, you don't remember half of the things you charge on credit cards anyway, so it won't matter in the long run. And buy yourself a new outfit while you're at it. Thank you Queen Ann, for the best advice so far; she is a mother of seven and married for fifty years- to the same man. He even still likes her, a lot.