The leash that started it all........

The leash that started it all……..

So… was SUPPOSED to be a wonderful day.  I woke up with this incredibly silly notion that     somehow everything and everyone would be nothing but rainbows and happiness.  As many moms know….this is essentially just an effort in futility and the very idea of it is, quite simply, nothing more than setting yourself up for complete and utter failure.  Every THING and every ONE will NEVER be perfect.  THIS is an indisputable FACT!

And yet, as the madness of the day swept me up and threatened to drag me under, I tried to stay optimistically focused.  However, the penis people were going absolutely bananas today.  I don’t know if it’s the warmer (almost spring-like) weather currently here in Michigan (stupid Michigan…..get your shit together already, will ya) or just plain old cabin fever, but they were, quite literally, about to drive me nuts or kill one another…….maybe both!  The laundry was taunting me from the basement, practically crawling up the stairs and waving an obnoxious hello to me.  The playroom was (ok… still IS) a disaster area and needs to be condemned.  The rest of the house…..well…..let’s just say I’m probably just a few concerned phone calls away from CPS removing my children, out of fear for their health and wellbeing.

While its been amazing being back to work……out in the world with REAL grownups, I’ve come to realize that the Dick has FAILED to realize that he maybe, just MAYBE, needs to pick up some of the slack here in our humble abode.   I suppose he thinks that if the penis people are fed and he half-ass cleans up the kitchen (can a kitchen REALLY be called clean when there is still crud all over the stove and the table and floor looks as if a kick ass food fight had taken place), he can officially call his duties complete.  What he needs to really understand is that laundry does NOT wash itself (though I know millions of women who pray every night that it will)……that crumbs all over the floor (and under the couch….and in the cushions…..and the penis people’s’ bedrooms) is just one big giant neon sign that says “Hello rodents and other creepy crawling things……we will be thrilled to feed you and your family”.  That dusting needs to be done OFTEN.  That floors need to be washed, especially when you let the baby finger paint the floor with milk while you get all cozy with ESPN on the couch and pretend not to notice.

Anyway…….I’m off topic here.  The house was a mess.  PERIOD! And while I busied myself with cleaning up and running laundry  down the stairs, past the disaster of a playroom (whatever, it will have to be cleaned some other day)………my penis people were locked in mortal combat over some stupid toy that neither one gave the least bit of a shit about until the other wanted it.

It was right about then, with the Dick SOMEHOW managing to sleep blissfully through this insanity (ok, he gets a pass here since he worked last night), that I’d finally had enough.  Myself AND the penis people desperately needed a change of scenary…..STAT!  I thought briefly about just packing our pajama-wearing selves up and heading out…….then scrapped that plan when I realized that I thoroughly enjoy making FUN of those kinds of people and I did NOT want to become one of them.  So, dress us all, I did.  I think I may have even brushed my hair.  Yes, we were looking JUST fabulous enough to head to the mall….where they OH SO CONVENIENTLY have this wonderful oasis of a playscape that would be a JUST PERFECT means of entertaining the penis people and burning off some of that energy.

Now, as many of you remember, the wee penis person has made it his sole life’s mission to make this momma crazy in nearly a billion little ways since the very moment of his conception.  Breaking free of my sweaty death-grip on his hand and running from me is one of his absolute favorites.  And because HE JUST KNOWS my ass is getting older…..he knows it will take me some time to catch up to him.  Homeboy is FAST!!!!! So, in social situations where I KNOW he’s likely to get lost or injured, I use his little baby tether…….FUCK IT….its a leash.  But, to be clear, I’m not AT ALL attempting to try to conceal the fact that I am placing a leash on my child.  Yes……it looks like a cute and cuddly little monkey.  NO……it DOES NOT in any way resemble a dog leash.  But it IS what IT IS!    And I honestly gave up (a very long time ago) giving a single crap about what other people (including the Dick and my MIL…who both hate it) think about my parenting choices.  Whenever I use it to corral the wee penis person, I make it my mission to NOT hang my head shamefully.  Quite the opposite!  I walk with my head held high and look EACH AND EVERY person who even glances at my leashed son IN THE EYE.  I am, to be honest, DARING THEM to utter one unkind word to me or about him!

Today’s winner was an aging hag who tossed a very careless “tsk-tsk” in my direction and shook her head and rolled her eyes in my direction.  THEN she called me a shitty parent who couldn’t adequately control her child.   Ummmmm…to say that I saw red would be an understatement.  Now, keep in mind, she didn’t have the balls to say it TO ME.  She was more inclined to be one of those people who toss out negative comments loud enough for you to hear but NOT ACTUALLY say it to you.  I will tell you…..her poor husband visibly winced when he saw me turn IMMEDIATELY and head in her direction.  Before I could even say a word, he choked out an apology for his “wife’s unnecessary outburst”.  OK, I will give dude props for attempting to defuse the situation quickly…..but he would have been better prepared had he muzzled her before they left the house.  This woman, whom I’m guessing is a mom herself, thought it would be an even better idea to wax philosophical on my lack of parenting skills than to turn, tuck her tail and run like hell in the other direction………

What she couldn’t possibly have known is that I’ve dealt with her type before……the “know everything” person who can’t help but share their views with the world.   Even more clear to me is that she is one of “those moms”…..the type who can’t help but feel better about themselves if they could only make some OTHER MOM feel worse about THEMSELVES.  I don’t like EITHER of these types of people…..and have EVEN LESS patience for letting them do “drive by negativity”.

I took a moment to let this thoughtful woman know that she shouldn’t get her Granny panties in a wad over this……because they are MY children!  They are exuberantly loved each and every damn breath I take…….they are immensely healthy……delirously happy……..and currently quite safe from harm!  I also, using that method where you get REALLY close to someone and practically WHISPER, let her know that she should watch how and with WHOM she chooses to preach her stellar parenting method to……because SOMEONE (me……..ME) might just decide to smack her next time.

The shock factor I was hoping for worked like a CHARM………she was literally stunned into silence (which is PRECISELY the reaction I was aiming for).   Her poor husband dragged her off by the arm before she could utter even one more negative word and I heard him tell her “that woman is ready to kick your ass……SHUT UP NOW”.

You Peckerheads would be so very proud of me……I think I uttered ONLY ONE curse word (and it was a minor one….I’m fairly certain I told her to go to hell at some point).   I kept my cool and maintained stellar composure (mostly).  And I’m pretty damn confident in the fact that I, in the end, schooled HER on how you should NEVER EVER pretend to think that you know ANY parents job better than THEY DO!  Should I have cussed her out????  Probably and maybe even abso-fucking-lutely……..but I’m smart enough to know that would have only perpetuated the idea of me she ALREADY had in her mind.  Plus, I wanted to make sure my penis people know that they should NEVER allow a misstep in someone’s judgement of them go without correction….but that you should do so with both poise and tact…….

Finally…….while I don’t expect EVERYONE to agree with me that the “tether of love” (as my FB MWDAS Moms Who Drink and Swear friend Jackie called it…..and I’m thinking she’s pretty awesome for allowing me to steal it from her) is the best way to deal with my wee penis person and his incessant need to bolt given the opportunity, I have ALWAYS thought that it’s just better for parents to KINDLY agree to disagree with one another instead of bashing each other over the head with our narcissistic idea that only OUR way is the ONLY  right one.  I’ve seen, over and over, on Facebook…..on other mom-blogs……in parent discussion groups…….this overwhelming and inherent need to make yourself appear to be MORE RIGHT by making another parent feel MORE WRONG.  Instead of building up a fellow parent and commiserating together about how difficult, but ultimately awesome, being a parent is……….sometimes parents (and, honestly, far too many moms) let that take a back-seat to kicking one another when they’re down.

Consider this my PSA for today……. we should advise only when asked……and shut the fuck up and keep our opinions to ourselves the rest of the time.  Had Granny followed this very simple golden rule……she would have saved herself the embarrassment of exposing her ignorant self to the world.