One of my favorite funny movie quotes is this one from Mrs. Doubtfire:
“Ever wish you could freeze frame a moment in your day, and look at it and say, ‘This is not my life’?”.
Oh boy, YES.
On Saturday we spent the afternoon with some relatives who live in an apartment right outside of D.C. There’s a pool up on the top and a nice terrace with a view of downtown- all very posh. We went up for a swim soon after arriving and one thing immediately stood out- this was definitely a place of residence to a lot of young, single people. Oh, and wealthy, as the rent is almost 3x our monthly mortgage!
Anyways, we went for a fun swim and tried not to disturb the sunbathers with our noise or splashes. After a bit I realized I’d have to feed Audrey, so I (quite gracefully, of course) extracted both of us from the pool, tried to towel us off, and went to find a spot on the terrace away from any windows. It was seriously the perfect weather out. Utterly comfortable in the shade with a nice breeze, and beautiful view.
Only once some guy poked his head out of the common area inside, saw me and then slinked back inside. Don’t worry- just me nursing here. Everything’s covered.
Our hosts then came over and told me someone had rented out the common area so they were heading inside to bring our food back down to their apartment. Tim was still in the pool with their almost 4 yo and Evie, so I headed that way. I noticed more hip singles sunning around the pool by this time. Tim was on the edge of the pool trying to convince Evie it was time to come out, and she was having none of it. He finally pulled her out and I came over to help. Then…MELT.DOWN. Front and center for everyone’s viewing displeasure. Shrieking, wailing, snotty nose, planted feet. She would not move. Nothing I tried to
bribe entice her with worked. Here I was clutching my 6 mo to my hip whilst trying to in-a-not-aggressive-way drag my 23 mo as much out of hearing distance as possible, and Tim was simultaneously trying to convince the 4 yo it was time to go. I’m sure we were quite a sight.
Yet somehow, I wasn’t really that embarrassed. If it had happened in the middle of mass, I would’ve been redder than a sun-burned tomato. But I think it was the combo of having to wear a swimsuit in public postpartum, being the only “group” up there with little kids- not to mention the shriek/sob-fest going on, and knowing my single, free, and in control days were loooong gone. I just went with it, although I’m sure we provided ample material for thoughts of, ‘aaand THAT’s why I’m never having kids’, amongst some.
The thing is, I wanted to let them know that this isn’t (usually) what our life is like! Sure it has insane, grrrrr!, and, “Do these kids come with a return policy?!” moments, but that’s not what our life IS. These kids are gifts to us- gifts that are also part of our path to heaven. They are full of love and life, and provide a plethora of funny moments (okay, some come way after the fact).
I just hope that whenever the going gets crazy, I’ll remember that every part of life has hardships and crosses, but they’re bringing me towards something better. Sometimes I find myself yearning for an easier life but I’m reminded our time here is temporary and we’re not made for this world. And these kiddos are my reminder to keep
crawling workin’ towards heaven.