Monday, February 15, 2016

Filed under The Worst: Filling out Valentine's Day cards.

Dear people-without-kids: Have you heard this idea that a lot of parents aren't the parents they thought they'd be? That life as a parent is way different than they imagined it would be?


You'd think there would be a general sense of solidarity among parents as to how fucking insane this journey is... and there IS, to a certain extent, but it's very difficult to forgive yourself for how much you're failing at this thing when it LOOKS LIKE everyone else is doing so well.

This is the valentine from one of Maddie's buddies. Those are rock crayons! This mom is winning the game of Mom.

I wanted to be a mom, more than anything I've ever wanted in my entire life. I looked forward to the struggle of motherhood. I was thrilled at the idea of school projects and holiday-themed photos and crafts and baking and cooking healthy meals. 

I am here to tell you this is all terrible.

Yeah, yeah, the kids are cute. They make you want to be a better person. You love them like you've loved no one else. My gratitude for their existence is unmatched.


Maddie's kindergarten teacher gives out a calendar every month with suggested daily activities. Check out what the activity was for the first Tuesday in February, which would be February 2nd.

I did purchase the valentines the weekend prior. But we found ourselves filling them out on Wednesday, February 10th, after school, before dinner, with two little girls who can't read. 

I've been home from work for maybe four minutes in this photo. Valentine-filling-out started immediately.

Through the stacks and stacks of paperwork that comes home between both schools, I was pretty sure both girls were having their parties on Thursday the 11th. (Maddie's ended up being on the 12th. So we were technically early filling out the cards.)

I bought the kids the same valentines so there would be no fighting. 

Also, Maddie insisted the girls get the pink envelopes and the boys get the yellow envelopes, despite us telling them repeatedly that there is no such thing as a "boy color" or a "girl color." 

Both of our girls know how to write their own names and the alphabet, but this didn't stop Maddie asking me how to write a "d." Repeatedly. (MADDIE: THERE ARE TWO Ds IN YOUR NAME.) Also, we had to talk Maddie off the ledge when we told her she wasn't allowed to give her teacher the two $5 bills she got in the mail from one of the grandparents.

You can see the paper next to her has all of her classmates listed on it. That didn't help her.
It is also very hard to be patient when they are both eager for your help, and there is only one of you (Gina was making dinner), and they have no idea how to take turns. So it was constantly, "MOMMY. MOMMY. MOMMY. MOMMY." And if you're telling one of them how to spell one name, the other one thinks you're talking to her and she'll start writing the letters on HER card, even though there is only one Paolo among the two classes. They are impatient and self-centered and exactly how they are supposed to be, and it makes projects like this insufferable. THANK GOD the teachers took care of the "Valentine box" making. I've seen some fantastic card boxes on Facebook from some friends around the country, but that would've put me over the edge. 

The DGAF Valentines bag for Izzy. Preschool is the best.

Here is the good news: we do get repaid for this trouble with some amazing presents that actually make me overjoyed to be taking this ride with these two little girls. (I mostly feel this way when they are in bed, and I come in the kitchen to get some wine and see the presents displayed in the kitchen. Still - I'll take it.) So yes, the journey is hard, and at times feels impossible. But it's my journey, and I know I'm lucky to be on it.

Ceramic candy dish!

We love you too, kid. More than we can possibly ever tell you.

1 comment:

Kim Tracy Prince said...

Girl, please. You haven't hit the 4th grade mission project yet. THEN you will know terrible.