This Mothering Gig

_MG_3361This past weekend was Mother’s Day and it was lovely.  But let me back up.  The week before Mother’s Day my husband was out of town once again and it felt like all the treading in the world could not keep my head above water.  Nothing huge happened, just the small day-to-day trials that can slowly drive you mad when you are going at it alone.  And for the record, my husband has been out of town for 25 days over the past month.  So there’s that.  The hardest thing about mothering, for me personally, is the loss of order and calm.  Two rambunctious boys = all out wildness for most waking hours.  I like a clean house and quiet hours to write/sew/photograph/knit. I like to wake up slowly and settle gently into the day.  Not going to happen when two active, energetic boys share your home.

This past Friday around 5pm, after an especially long week alone, a sense of calm came over the house.  Dinner was made, the house was tidy, the laundry was folded, and the boys were playing nicely outside.  I settled onto our front stoop with my knitting to enjoy the unfolding evening, when out of nowhere Vijay decided to use his baseball bat as a spear and it goes sailing through the basement window.  Glass shattered everywhere, covering the basement (which is the playroom) with a fine sprinkling of glass.  The window must have broken into 2 million pieces, I kid you not.  I pretty much lost it.  Not at Vijay (although he did earn himself a time out for being ridiculous and chucking his bat through the window) but just at everything.  I felt every ounce of energy drain out of my body, and I decided that I wasn’t going to do a damn thing to rectify the situation.  I poured myself a large glass of wine (and I pretty much never drink, like ever) and closed the basement door, and then sat down and wrote out a to-do list for my husband.  #1: Clean up the basement.  #2: Replace the window.  And so on.  Sometimes, you just have to know when to hand off the baton (and when to call the kind, and very handy next-door neighbor to cover your window with plywood).

But now my husband is home, and all is right with the world.  It is spring and the neighborhood is dripping in blossoms.  Vijay made me a crown for Mother’s Day (“because crowns make you feel special”) and I received gorgeous bouquets of flowers.  I slept in and watched Game of Thrones and knit in bed, and I puttered around the garden.  We walked to Three Sisters for ice cream and played in the park until dark.  It was lovely.  My boys gave me good snuggles and told me they loved me at least 100 times.  It’s not easy, this mothering gig, and there are moments that call for large glasses of wine and the admission of defeat, but I certainly wouldn’t trade it for all the gold in the world.  Without the difficult moments, the ones that test our patience to the limit, there wouldn’t be such moments of joy: heart-stopping moments when a little being looks up at you with all the love in his heart, and all the trust in his world.  I hope you had a lovely weekend celebrating the mothers in your life!  xo



Your thoughts on “This Mothering Gig

  1. You poor thing, I hope that you don’t have to continue these weeks of single parenting for too much longer. Some things I do to survive are preparing batches of meals to freeze when my husband is able to play with the children, get up early and get myself ready before anyone else is awake, and I never even think about time to myself to do what I want to do until after the kids are in bed asleep at night.

  2. I’m sorry, Christine, I had to chuckle. I remember those kind of days b/c I share your temperament and need for order and calm. These are the events that now come up at the family dinner table and the grandchildren laugh with delight to hear the antics of their papas. I have long days of pure silence, endless time for crafts, and my house looks like a museum. I love it but I also love having our home turned upside down when the circus comes to town (the boys visit with their families!). I think your to do list for hubby was perfect!

  3. Oh “this mothering gig” indeed 🙂 I’m smiling, nodding my head and maybe chuckling… just a little. I wouldn’t trade it in either and nor am I a drinker, but I would have been reaching for whatever was in the cupboard with that one. Glad you had a lovely Mother’s Day and I hope that, that list was as long as Santa’s 😉 xo

  4. Good on you writing that list for your husband to do. I have a friend who when she had their first child ended up doing most of the parenting, her husband was always busy at work. Eventually she told him it had to change as she had not signed up to be a single mother. I hope for you, that eventually your husband might be able to be around more, it sounds like a hard slog right now. But I’m also happy to hear you had a great mother’s day.

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