I'm sitting in a coffee shop contemplating what kind of tea I want to order. And listening a middle aged couple argue over how dismissive he is of her opinion of Bill O'Reilly. I'm really trying not to listen, but she's annoyed that he doesn't like O'Reilly and he says she puts people in categories. I wish they'd put me in a category, the category of people who should not be able to hear your conversation.
I'm in the coffee shop because I am a failure as a stay at home mom. I'm not looking for validation from anyone, nor am I humblebragging, which is apparently a new term apparently mostly applied to mommy bloggers. So let's just clear that up right now. But, truly as a stay at home mom, not so good. I've been gone most of the afternoon, and I'm still gone. Albeit with different kids. My kids do a significantly better job at the whole stay at home bit than I do.
I blame soccer. Although, actually, this all started with ballet. Or maybe even with my being home schooled. One of my most distinct memories is being lonely. Wanting to do something, anything, with other people. Just basic social interaction. That really wasn't big on the rest of the family's radar, and so I vowed I would do better by my children. And now realize, they might just have been on to something.
It was one thing when it was just Baby and Baba, and Baba took one ballet class and Baby danced in the corner. It was exciting to see Baba with her hair up, in her little black leotard. And so, naturally, I signed her up for soccer, which she was so excited for. And if Baba did it, well Baby most certainly had to. So there were two ballet classes and two soccer practices. And three children.
But they kept getting better. So Baba had to take a different class than Baby. And soccer was at different times, at different fields. But it was still manageable. So naturally I decided that what I needed was another kid in soccer and three kids taking swimming lessons and three kids in ballet/creative movement. And a toddler. Because life should not be easy.
Again, it sort of made sense, except for the schedule. And X-Man was singularly unimpressed with the car. The other kids were confused. Were we people who lived in a car and had a house? Was that how it worked? X-Man made it clear that car seats are simply 21st century racks, and every one took their shoes off. Seriously. Baby took it to the furthest extreme, but not only removing her shoes, each and every time we got in the car, but also her tights, or socks, or pants. Because she got hot. Baba stuck with undoing her hair. Baby took sharpie to her pants, and NO I don't know where she got a sharpie from. And in the chaos of it all, I forgot to make sure Mac was wearing shoes....more than once.
But we soldiered on. I was clever and signed the kids up for swimming lessons in a block. Baba went first, Baby and Mac went together. For one week. And then the child who wouldn't put her face in the water for her swim test decided that not only could she put her face in the water, she could blow bubbles and float. She got moved to a different class. On a different day. Mac decided that was a good idea and followed suit. However, it took him an extra week to figure that out, he spent his first lesson bobbing up and down in the pool yelling "teacher, teacher! Did you know I love swimming!?!" So by the time he tested into Baby's class, she'd already decided she'd had enough of the level two scene and had advanced again. So in the course of three week, I went from having three children having swimming lessons on one day, in one hour, to three children having lessons on three different days.
Soccer's it's own monster, we have reached the point where there is no off season for Baba. Baby only has it two nights a week and Mac's in the clear. For now. But he should start brushing up on his wrestling skills now. I thought I knew what soccer involved, but it wasn't until Mac started playing that I discovered that boys' soccer has wrestling involved in it. Don't worry, the kid with the ball usually can jump the writhing mass, so the game goes on.
I have more or less found my balance in all this chaos. But every now and then I hear "Mom, mom, remember how it's going to be Baby's first communion and that mother daughter event that you want to take Baba to, because it talks her through what she's going to experience in the next few years, and there will be three soccer games a weekend, and there will be Baby's birthday and soccer try outs and Mother's Day and it will be the end of the school year so you'll be really busy with work, 'member? Yeah, I want to be born then!"