Sometimes I find myself considering my life as a stay-at-home-mom (and contract blogger – yippee!), and I just feel reeeeeeally bad. There are folks on both side of the “Working Moms vs. SAHMs” war (which I personally just don’t understand debating – can’t we just continue picking on each other about the size of our boobs, butts, or wallets without pulling how we choose to raise our kids into it, ladies?). So don’t worry, I can think of at least five people off the top of my head who would look straight down their noses at my decision to leave work and stay home with Russ. I am actually completely fine with them thinking I’m an idiot, as there are literally hundreds more folks whom I’ve encountered at one point or another in my life that would concur that I am, in fact, an idiot. For whatever reason – politics, my sense of humor, my affinity for really awkward moments, my inability to match my belt to my purse to my shoes.
But even in my “cushy,” “luxurious” life as a Target-underwear-loving, baby-food-splattered, breastfeeding, gym-going, frizzy haired SAHM…well, I like to be pampered every once in awhile. I like things that are comforting. I’m sure that not all moms have this experience, but one of the biggest changes for me when Russ was born was not being comforted as much. Suddenly you go to visit your parents and they sort of half-hug you in a Bond-esque swipe to grab the cooing baby and start babbling grandparent-talk to him. And that’s totally okay!! Just as I’m cool with some folks thinking I’m an idiot for _____ reason, I’m also pretty secure in the fact that Russ has usurped my position as the baby. I’m the mommy now, Russ is the baby, and I happily play second fiddle to that. In fact, if my mom or Jonathan’s dad or whoever else (there’s only two other grandparents after them, so please do be imaginative) were more interested in us than they were in Russ, I’d be a bit concerned or even offended.
But I’ve noticed lately what simple things provide me comfort, especially on those days when something feels off or I just find myself uneasy in the knowledge that ______ (insert “wrong” thing – Russ is growing up too fast or my thighs feel like they’re retaining 5 lbs. of water or the crap in Libya is scary or gas is getting too expensive or…you see how this could fill up a low-capacity stress-bucket like myself, correct?)
Here are some of those things.
- One simple formula: Hard interval run + hot shower + wet hair + cold margarita (rocks, salt, no umbrellas, with Sauza, Patron, or Cuervo Gold…surprise me).
- Thursdays – if Jonathan is off on Friday, that is.
- Prell Shampoo – and, more (and creepily) specifically, the scent of my dad’s hairbrush. At least I am not alone on this one – my younger brother totally agrees with me.
- Dove Soap
- Weather Channel music (yes, that horrendously 1994-ish stuff), especially when it’s raining outside (or better yet, hurricaning…ya know, if “hurricaning” can be temporarily considered a word).
- When I’m driving and “The Way It Is,” by Bruce Hornsby and The Range comes on the radio. Good grief, how shameful and humiliating is that?! Go, quickly, and tell a friend that you know some sad person who actually likes that song. Because I freakin’ LOVE it.
- Starbucks, seasonally appropriate – if it’s below 68 degrees, a grande Pumpkin Spice Latte; above 68 degrees, an iced two-pump white chocolate latte).
- Someone playing with my hair. If I get to Heaven, I am convinced that it will be like that.
- Lying in bed at night, watching “Family Guy” with Jonathan.
- Mornings. I like light.
- Big bowls of cereal with really, really cold milk.
- The end of my parents’ dock – whether it’s cold or sunny or hot or dreary, whether it’s snowing or raining, and especially when it’s gusting to 65 mph and everyone is yelling for me to come in.
- Looking through my high school yearbook and – like exiting the theater after a horrific and terrifying movie – closing the book to realize that I don’t ever have to do that again.
- Holding my son as close to me as possible.
- And hearing him laugh.
More to come…