Friday, December 12, 2008

Best Mom Tip #5: Accept a certain lack of privacy

Becoming a mom means you lose a little bit of your air of mystery, to say the least. Suddenly, there is someone who thinks it is perfectly acceptable to demand you bare your breasts and feed them every 2 to 3 hours no matter who may be nearby. You find yourself getting creative with blankets and jackets to cover yourself in restaurant booths. You may start to invest in things called "hootie hiders" or some other cutsie name that is supposed to make you feel better about playing the role of milk cow in public.

After the nursing phase is over, you still don't really belong to yourself. Your children will stick their little fingers under the door while you try to use the bathroom. Once they get over that phase, they'll just stand outside the door and yell questions like "Mommy, what is wrong with the dishwasher? I was just playing with the handle and now the kitchen is soapy!"

Getting dressed is another fun activity for two (or three or four). Once when I was getting dressed I found my daughter studying us both in the mirror. I was expecting something sweet like "I love you, Mommy" to come out of her mouth. What I got was, "Mommy, I have a little bottom. You have a big bottom. A big, biiiiiiiiiiiiiiig bottom." I remember this every time I get a look at my big "bommun" (as she pronounced it at the time) in the mirror. Or the side of a building. Or those weird mirrored columns in the mall.

I guess my point is this: I am not going to be alone again until all my children are teenagers and they no longer want to talk to me. So as up close and personal as my life might be sometimes, I'm just going to grin and bear it. I draw the line at leaving the bathroom door open while I'm in there, but otherwise, it's not such a bad thing to give my kids access to me if they need it. We have locks on the doors if we really need to keep them out of our bedroom.

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