Tuesday, March 3

1940's Sitcom vs. Nonbeliever

     The door opens and a father whistles as he walks into his white picket fenced house. Cue aproned wife with immaculate hair who smells like cherry pie. Two, well behaved and clean, children calmly walk down the steps to meet their father with proper greetings. They all kiss and walk through the
swinging door to the kitchen, letting the smell of a 5 course dinner drift out.

     Now let's add some color to the black and white.

     The door opens and a father walks into his peeling, white apartment. Cue wife, in day old pajamas, sitting on couch or no wife at all. She's at work in order to pay for that new white paint. The place smells like dog, dirty diapers and that odd smell of 5 people living together. There's a child screaming in the kitchen because he doesn't want to do his homework. Another in the refrigerator (with the freezer open, too) and a third eating the food out of the dog dish.
     Dinner is the take out Mom will bring home after work or Dad can order pizza. Quite possibly a microwavable dinner from Aldi's/Piggly Wiggly/the-cheapest-grocery-store-there-is with a side of whatever kid #2 will pick at, kid #3 will feed the dog and kid #1... where did kid #1 go? He was supposed to be doing his homework...

     We've seen that picture floating around on Facebook.  There's a kid coming out of every orifice in some form of chaos.

     I'm not saying that parenthood is that bad. But it definitely is not Scene A. Well, maybe if your husband's a doctor and or if you have the Mother Goose Syndrome (I made that shit up).
     5 out of 10 women have kids outside of marriage. 4 out of 10 raise kids by themselves ( I also made that up). So out of 10 women you have a 10 percent chance to marry Prince Charming and live the fairy tale (depending on what your fairy tale dream is).
     I don't know about you, but I've never seen Snow White wipe poop off her one year old's nursery wall because he/she found inspiration. Or miss her 6 year old's kindergarten graduation because her 8 month old is teething and the babysitter list is one name long.
     Now why did I have kids? I was the stereotype, irresponsible teenager who forgot to wrap it up. #2 came to be because I figured that I survived the first one and the hell why not? It's the "thing" to do. The house, marriage and kid package.
      I recommend that if you see having children as Scene A, then DON'T. Nothing on television comes even close to reality, even the reality shows. There are no commercials (but plenty of re-runs). If you can't picture handling Scene C without losing it, then you might not make it. Not to mention you have to survive pregnancy to begin with.
     Life itself is chaotic without kids. Add a kid or four and add some gray hairs. Another living being is in your care and you could screw it all up at any moment. No matter how many parenting magazines or online doctor articles I read, most of the time I'm winging it. It doesn't feel like it gets any easier as they get older. Age equals more responsibility for them which turns you into nervous wreck and makes you over think if you've prepared them enough.
     It's not all bad. I will give you that. There are first smiles (which are usually gas or blowouts) and first steps, first tooth, first kiss, first car, and first date. You get to play with Matchbox cars, watch Scooby Doo and eat Spaghetti O's. Make-believe is the new you. Santa Clause and all those magical creatures are real again. You give your kids all of you and they give you laughter.
     You just learn to go with it. If you don't, you might lose it and some days you do. Things get broken, lost, stained or time seems wasted.
     Life happens. Frame the smiles. You won't regret it.

1 comment:

  1. I love this so much J, the real depiction of what parenting can really look like. I say cast off those encumberments of people trying to be idyllic 1950's standards of family life. My parents were in that era with my oldest siblings and it never looked like that!!!! Be you, be loving, and be fabulous is my motto in my life as a woman, Mom, and wife. Fantastic article this is really refreshing and beautifully honest. 😊