My senior year in high school (if you want to see what I looked like then click here), I sat down and wrote out a plan for my life. I listed my goals and set due dates for each one. After all…
“Goals are dreams with deadlines” – Diana Scharf Hunt
“Goals that are not written down are just wishes.” – Anonymous
and other pearls of wisdom.
Of all the things I set out to do, the only deadline I met was motherhood. At age 17, I had written down the words, “Have my first child at age 28.” I thought this would be the ideal time because I’d still be young, but with enough experience, stability and security from a career in medicine, a healthy marriage and a home that I own, to actually do the job well. But at age 28, I didn’t have any of those things. Although I wasn’t prepared for motherhood, according to my plan, meeting that goal – a mom at age 28 – made me feel as though I could do it; it was meant to be. This was something I’d done right.
I still had concerns about my ability to parent. If I was hiring women to be mothers, I wouldn’t have even considered a resume like mine. I didn’t have all it takes to be a mom. I showed up for the job on time, but really wasn’t qualified. Luckily, Julia offered on-the-job training.
Before Julia came, when I thought about being a mother, I saw it as a role to prepare for, a destination to reach, something to achieve. As time goes by, I find that motherhood isn’t just about being, it’s about becoming.
With every phase Julia passes through, I have moments where I wonder how I’ll handle what comes next, but I always find a way. And when the next moment arrives, no matter how big the challenge, it’s easier than I expected because my love for my daughter is larger than my fears, deeper than my insecurities and stronger than my worry. And I am more than I thought I could be because of my little girl who needs me and believes.
Today was Julia’s last Kindermusik class for this session and I wanted to do something special to celebrate our last hurrah with this particular group of people. Julia suggested cupcakes, which she naturally would because that is my standard “something special” that I do. Cupcakes. That’s it. It’s the highest form of praise you can get from me, because I can do cupcakes. And that’s about all I can do.
So, it was decided that cupcakes would be made for today. Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes. Because they’re fun and special and guaranteed to impress the 4 and under crowd.
I had intended to make them last night, but I ran out of time and energy. And the recipe said they’re best served the day they’re made, so I decided to do it early this morning, which was stupid. Because I am not good in the morning. I am so bad in the morning that any person that has to deal with me when I wake up knows they must follow these rules: 1) Do not talk to me. You may only speak if I speak to you first and even then, don’t get chatty. Just quick responses. 2) Do not look at me. You may only look at me if I speak to you and even then, just glance. Do not stare under any circumstances. In fact, it’s best to just stay completely out of my field of vision until I’m fully awake. 3) Do not invade my personal space and NEVER touch me. 4) Do not make excessive noise. 5) The penalty for breaking rules 1 – 4 is death. Seriously. It just might be the reason I’m an only child.
So, the alarm goes off this morning. I gave myself just enough time to make the cupcakes before I had to wake Julia up, get her ready and out the door to class. I didn’t allow myself extra time for a mistake or two. Or three or four. Because I’m a dumbass. Especially in the morning.
It all started okay – I made the cake batter, filled the cones, stuck them in the oven at 350 degrees, set the timer for 20 minutes and hopped on my laptop to try and catch up on blogs. I was really excited about the 20 minutes to read blogs. Julia was still asleep and everything. Then, the timer went off. I ran to check the cupcakes and they had bubbled up over the tops of the cones. The recipe said to fill each cone with 1/4 cup of batter. Liars. You should only fill them up halfway. No problem, though. I grabbed a knife and started to trim the excess, and by the time I finished that, they were cool enough to ice and sprinkle with…um…sprinkles.
Then Julia woke up. She ran downstairs, caught me in the icing act and screamed, “I HELP YOU!” Her idea of helping was grabbing the bottle of sprinkles and chugging them like a sorority girl on pledge day. She managed to consume about half the bottle before I snatched it from her hands. I can’t wait to see her next poopy.
Once the cupcakes were complete, I started to package them in my awesome cupcake tray for the trip to class. But, guess what? Ice cream cones are narrower at the bottom than regular cupcakes and that makes them unstable. It means that when you try to move the tray, those ice cream cone cupcakes are gonna fall like dominoes. And icing? It’s messy. By this point, I was running late, but I was too invested in the cupcakes to jump ship. So, I wrapped the bases of the cones with crunched up rings of aluminum foil and jammed them into the cupcake holes. I gave the tray a test shake and everything looked good.
Julia and I quickly ran upstairs and took a shower together. I think I got our hair combed. Maybe. I’m not sure. We definitely brushed our teeth. Then, I put Julia in a dress because there was no time for a two item outfit. I threw on some shorts and a shirt, checked myself in the mirror and noticed a giant stain on the ass of my shorts. Took them off, got a second pair. Hole in the crotch. The third pair worked, but the shirt was no longer appropriate. I have to make careful clothing choices that show off my assets and hide the rest. I needed a shirt that was long enough to cover the waist of the shorts and just big enough to make people think, “Maybe she’s not taking up all that space in there. Maybe her shirt is just baggy.” I found a shirt, but the only shoes that would work were sandals and we take our shoes off for Kindermusik. And my feet are disgusting. I grabbed some socks, shoved them in my pocket and ran downstairs with Julia.
We were way late by now and there was no time for breakfast, so I gave Julia a cupcake to eat in the van. (I know, I know. No one’s calling me Mother Of The Year, anyway. It’s alright. Instead of dessert after dinner, I’ll make her eat asparagus.) I buckled her up in her seat, put the cupcakes in the passenger seat, got in the van and started it up. And my gas light was on. I definitely didn’t have time to drive out of the way for gas, so I emptied the gas from the lawnmower gas can into the van, spilling just a little on my toes. I got back in the van and tore out of the driveway. And all the cupcakes spilled. I yelled. Julia learned a new word: BITCH.
At this point, we were too late to worry about it. I pressed on. At 89 miles per hour down the highway. When we pulled into our normal parking space at Kindermusik, we were only two minutes behind. I jumped out of the van, ran around to the cupcakes and did damage control. They looked okay. I got Julia out of the van and realized I didn’t have a quarter to plug the meter. I only had nickels. For a moment, I considered jamming the nickels into the meter so I could claim it was broken if I got a ticket, but destruction of property isn’t really my style. I decided to just take a chance and headed to class without putting money in the meter.
As we walked up the street to our building, I caught a glimpse of myself reflected in an SUV. I was sweaty and the ferocious sunburn I got from playing outside all week had started to peel, mostly on my ears and my scalp where my hair parts. And I smelled like gas. And I was bringing cupcakes. I wondered if the parents would even let their kids eat them considering how I looked. But, they did. And they loved them. Another mom brought balloons because it happened to be her daughter’s birthday. It ended up being a great time. And did I tell you they loved my cupcakes? Maybe it’s because they love me. Flawed old me.
And I didn’t get a parking ticket.
Last night, I dreamed I was on Celebrity Fit Club. I was the only contestant that didn’t lose any weight. Weigh in after weigh in, I kept gaining.
I consulted a Dream Dictionary and found that dreams about weight gain or being overweight could mean that I’m feeling overburdened and pressured, and I may be carrying too many responsibilities.
Dave thinks it means I need to have more sex.
Karly tagged me for the 10 Things Meme and it goes like this: I write ten things about me, then I tag ten people and they write ten things about them, then they tag ten more people and on and on it goes until the world ends.
Now, here are my ten things.
Okay, now it’s time for tagging. So, I’m going to ta-
Hey, LOOK! Kittens!
Life is kicking the shit out of me right now.
I haven’t posted lately because all I’ve felt like putting up are sad song lyrics and pictures of crying angels or puppies or something that would make me roll my eyes on a normal day and I don’t want to be like that. Still…
Just make it go away now.
When Daddy asked me about your gift
I did not know what to say.
What do you give someone,
Who gives so much everyday?
We whispered when you weren’t looking
And came up with this plan.
To show how much you mean to us,
And to love you all we can.
We spent hours in deliberation,
Going over our delicate ploy.
Wanting…hoping for something you’d like,
And would fill your heart with joy.
We wanted to get something special,
Something you’ve never had before.
Something you could place up high,
Something you could adore.
We thought about a vacation,
A trip to a beach of golden sand.
Maybe a cruise upon the ocean,
Or visit a canyon so grand.
I asked Daddy, “What about diamonds,
Like in the Twinkle, Twinkle song?”
He said your eyes are brighter than stars,
And with you we both belong.”
I worried that we would spend too much,
But Daddy said not to dwell.
He said your love is priceless,
And no wealth could make him sell.
Our gift is not that glamourous,
No fancy paper, ribbons or bows.
Just the knowledge that we love you,
And each day it forever grows.
We hope you like our little gift,
And it makes you want to smile.
Just like life we will not quit,
Till we go the extra mile.
WE LOVE YOU MOMMY!
Daddy & Julia