I know I do my fair share of complaining about being a stay at home (work) mom. the screaming. the chaos. getting all the glasses of milk. but I have always said one thing, “I would do ANYTHING in order to be at home with them right now.” and I walk that talk. I work my bum off running a small business in a craptastic economy. I pinch this household so tight you’d be shocked at how little I spend to keep it going month to month. I do the majority of the child rearing, the fun parts (afternoon trips to the park, art days) and the not so fun ones (triple meltdowns in the grocery stores) and the nessecary parts (brushing teeth, laundry, laundry and more laundry).
my baby sister is going to a whole new extreme to make sure she logs in those precious early years. she’s moving. across the country. (halfway). back to where it gets COLD. and HOT. yeah, we’re temperate people in these parts. 60’s and sunny. but, the weather is beside the point. she’s leaving and she’s taking that cute little monkey baby with her. and you know what, I thought I’d be MAD and sad and a whole gament of other things. but when she told me all I could think was, “I get it.” I happened to be rocking Jack to sleep at the time, I looked down at his soft little angel face and imagined not seeing him every second of every day of his little life and I knew then, I’d do ANYTHING to not lose that. even if it meant putting on a coat in the winter.
and all these extreme measures made me stop and think about little people. and how they transform our lives. we think we have it all figured out. we have our career paths and lives set, our 5 year plans. our 401ks. and then they come along and they blow that planned little life out of the water. I was halfway up the corporate ladder. I spent a lot of my time worrying about sweaters. and dressing tall plastic runway models. believe it or not I’ve had 45min conversations with a TEAM of individuals about the placement of a necklace. sometimes I stop and think, “was I really going to devote my life to that? was that really worth my years?”
my mom got sick when she was 49. FORTY NINE. that’s a daily reminder to me that our years are limited. make them count. each and every one, you only get so many. so when my little people came my world stopped. I would say it was put on hold, but that’s inaccurate. it stopped. it shifted. I want these years to matter. I want these years to result in something other than high sweater sales.
I still have pointless conversations that last 45 min. but they are usually about juice. or dinosaurs. I still spend a lot of time dressing people. I spend a lot of my time kissing faces. tickling. building confidences one hug at time. opening paint jars. sweeping up. and I know that each day matters, even the hard ones. so I told my sister, “I will miss you, but I get it.” Isla will only be a little monkey for so long.
so off they go. back across the rockies to where the land lies flat. where she can hug and tickle and open paint jars. where she can make her years matter. and we will be here. where the parking lots are full of sea gulls. missing them.