“Those that see it, those that don’t”

Take a look at this picture.

socks

It belongs to a friend of mine. (Don’t worry; she gave me permission to share.) 😉

There are two kinds of people in this world. Those that see it and those that don’t.

I am without a doubt, one of those that see “it.” It’s no secret that I like my house clean! Oh wait. Let me clarify. I like the look of my house when it’s clean. Unbeknownst to my husband, the process of cleaning my house is not actually enjoyable for me. I mean really, who wants to spend their “spare” time picking up other people’s belongings?! Scrubbing toilets and dishes, washing clothes, hanging up the clean laundry. Ugh, I loathe hanging up the laundry!

It’s the worst.

Back to my point. I hate the process; however, I really enjoy the outcome! Not for long, mind you. I have three kids, (four if you include the husband.) But how great is that moment when your whole house is clean?! You can sit back on your couch, put your feet up, enjoy a glass of wine and be at peace with your surroundings.

Total Zen.

If you are a Mom reading this, you know that I am lying, because your little terrors angels are a step behind you ripping everything apart. Or, your husband. I don’t know about you, but I can’t focus on anything, when my house is a mess. It’s like a representation of my mental state. If you ever walk into my home and it looks like an episode of “Hoarders” was filmed here, it is in your best interest to leave. Immediately.

By all means, I try my best. I organize and simplify the steps, but I have three kids and with each kid, you get more stuff and more mess. I realized the other day (while cleaning the house of course), that I spend more time putting items back where they belong, than the time it takes for vacuuming, laundry, and dishes combined. Putting things back in their original place! How much time could be saved if the other people that live here would put things back where they belong?! Toys in the toy bin, laundry in the laundry basket, dishes in the sink. It’s like a scavenger hunt to see what kind of treasures I can find on a daily basis! I’m not gonna lie, it drives me absolutely batty sometimes! No matter how hard I try, I will never understand, because I am one of those people that “see it.”

Have you looked at the picture? Do you see IT?

Here’s what I see. A wife that tried her darnedest to simplify a process.

Problem: Her husband throws his socks on the floor, beside the bed, every night. Now, there must be a logical explanation for this?! Some kind of obstruction or barricade that is keeping him from entering the laundry room? Clearly his legs are broken and his crutches won’t fit through the door! Or, NOT. He’s fine. His legs are perfectly fine, but every night he removes his socks and drops them on the floor, beside the bed.

Solution: The wife places a laundry basket in the exact location of removal.

Do you see it now?? Mind. Blowing.

Now here’s the funny part. Not everyone can “see it.” (Well, not before I point out the obvious.) How do I know this, you ask? Because I showed my husband. I am someone that totally “gets” the insanity of it! The wife made it as simple as possible. Yet, the process of putting the socks into the basket could NOT be done. Her husband just doesn’t “get it.”

I thought to myself, this is the perfect example to show to my husband! He is known for leaving his socks beside the bed too. Surely, he will see the hilarity of this picture!

I waited until he got home from work that day. I couldn’t just send this sort of thing in a text; I had to see the reaction on his face when he saw it. I wanted to share the moment with him. That instant when his brain had processed what his eyes had seen, and we’d laugh, and laugh, and laugh about it. I tried to conceal the smirk on my face as I handed him my phone, where the photo had been stored for easy access. He took the phone from my hand. There was at least 30 seconds of silence as he analyzed what he was looking at. I said to him “isn’t that hilarious?” And he says to me “why would someone leave an empty laundry basket beside the bed??”

I could tell by his expression, that he was not joking. He wasn’t messing with me, he was actually puzzled. And so there I am thinking to myself, it does not get any more obvious than this photo, and he still doesn’t “get it”. He doesn’t see the damn socks?! How is that POSSIBLE?!

That’s when I “got it”.

He will never see the socks.

It’s never going to happen, because he’s just one of “those people.”

It’s not his fault. I actually felt a little bit sorry for him. I mean really, to be that oblivious. But then it hit me. Why on earth do I feel sorry for him!? Someone feel sorry for ME! One, because I want to be the person that doesn’t see the socks! That mounding pile of dirty, sweaty, smelly socks beside the bed. How liberating that must feel, to walk past those dirty socks day in and day out. And two, because I am the person, that will have to pick up those dirty, sweaty, smelly socks for the rest of my days.

Why you ask?

Because my husband doesn’t even see them.

By: Sara Park

 

 

“Morning Breath”

My son brushed his teeth in the truck this morning.

morningbreathpicThis is how it all went down.

My two big kids were getting dressed for school, and we were short on time, so I figured we would do the teeth brushing in the downstairs bathroom. That way, they could finish getting dressed, while I ran ahead downstairs, to start the breakfast process.

I tucked their toothbrushes and toothpaste in my purse, then carried my purse towards the stairs.

The toddler is in this whole “independent stage”, so I waited for what felt like an eternity for her slide down the stairs on her tummy.

When we got to the bottom, I tossed my purse on the floor (this is why I don’t use designer handbags), and I locked the baby gate behind me.

I hurried to the stove, and started heating the pan for my son’s eggs, then I reached for the cereal preference of my girls.

While the eggs were frying, I turned around to see the kid’s homework zippy’s sitting on the counter, so I hustled down the hall and grabbed their backpacks to load them up. Lunch bags were still in the fridge; I reached in, and remembered that I had to warm up my son’s baked beans for lunch!

Bowl from the cupboard, spoon from the drawer, beans in the microwave.

His eggs were done! I brought his plate to the table. We had 8 minutes left to eat.

I started some toast for me as the toddler screamed “all done” from her highchair. I told her “just a minute” as I grabbed a paper towel to wrap my toast in, which in baby language, translated to “you are staying in that chair for the rest of your whole life”, and so naturally, she lost her mind.

Toast was up! Kids were done.

I sent them down the hall to get their coats and shoes on. (Yes, the toddler too.) Two can play at this game of “independence.” My plan of “you still need Mom’s help” backfired as she managed to put on her own hat and half of her coat. I’m sure if she had more time, she could’ve done it all, but the clock was a-ticking, so I tucked her other arm in.

Kids were dressed, we were out the door.

I started driving down the road, and in my rear view mirror, I see my son lean over to give his younger sister a kiss on the cheek. I remind him to ask her if she wants a kiss, and wait for her to answer before he proceeds.(This wasn’t for his sister’s sake.) She would have never said no to him, but he can’t just assume that everyone wants to be kissed, without so much as asking them first. It’s a life skill!

He said to her “want kiss” and I helped him rephrase his wording to make a full sentence. She replied with “yes” and he leaned back in to kiss her cheek, when my daughter said to me “his breath smells like eggs.”

#ParentFail

I forgot to brush their teeth.

But, I still had their toothbrushes and toothpaste in my purse! (It wasn’t over ‘til it was over.) I handed the toothbrush and water bottle to my daughter. There was no time for toothpaste, and it’s not something I could maneuver while I drove, so a water brushing would have to do!

(My son was giving her some serious eyebrows while the electric toothbrush ran on full speed.)

She handed the toothbrush back, as we were pulling into the school parking lot.

Out she went, and we were on our way to my son’s school! (Yes, they are at two different schools.) This was an opportunity though! There is 40 minutes and only a few blocks between the two schools. A serious brainstorming session was about to happen.

My son was going to need toothpaste, there was no doubt about that! I mean, the kid had eggs for goodness sake! He couldn’t go to school with fart breath.

We pulled into his school lot and I parked the truck in our usual spot. I started fishing around the back seat, looking for “supplies”. Oh, this was happening!

I found a garbage bag. Yes! The “sink”. There were some wrappers and a frozen banana peel in it, but beggars could not be choosers!

A water bottle, toothpaste, the toothbrush and a “sink.” We had what we needed.

He crawled up to the passenger seat, where I could assist. I dribbled some water from my water bottle on the toothbrush, with a pea sized amount of toothpaste. (I am a rule follower, after all.) We hit the “on” button. I moved the toothbrush around his mouth while he held the plastic bag under his chin.

I saw someone walking towards our truck, so I shielded the tooth brushing session with my torso. I realized how ridiculous this must look, so I handed my son the toothbrush, he dropped the plastic bag, and I took the opportunity to photograph that “fine parenting moment.”

Say “cheese.”

I tucked the mobile camera away and took control of the brushing while he held the “sink” steady. I needed to be sure there are no eggy remnants left in there!

The brushing was complete, but he had a mouthful of minty freshness. I put the toothbrush down and pressed the plastic bag against his chin. He spat. It didn’t go well. He had no room to lean forward. I hadn’t planned for that. Have you ever tried to spit from a straight up sitting position? It doesn’t work.

*Note to self* Move the seat back, for leaning forward ability.

I wiped his chin with my toast paper towel. I’m super resourceful like that! I handed him my water bottle, so he could swish some water around his mouth. He spat again, but with force, and it came out like a water fountain.

Straight into the bag. Ha! He mastered it! That has got to count for something!? A checkmark on the “ISP”, an “area of strength.”

SOMETHING?!

I tied up the bag and tossed it in the backseat. He looked over at me with raised eyebrows and a generous smirk. Words were not needed. The expression on his face read loud and clear, “my Mother is nuts!”

How about you? Was there a time when the parenting odds were stacked against you? Tell me how you persevered !

Written by: Sara Park

A Day Of Birth

Wishing my favourite boy the happiest of Birthday’s today !

image

It’s always a hard time for Mommy, when your birthday comes around.

I wish I could just keep you little forever, but I haven’t figured out how to do that yet !

For my own selfish reasons, I ache for you to have the material aspects of a birthday.
A “traditional” celebration with cake, presents, a party and guests.

But because of your special diet, you can’t eat the treats.
And you’ve never cared much for presents or elaborate Pinterest parties.

Sometimes we get lost in the superficial parts of a birthday, and forget what we are supposed to be celebrating, a day of birth.

You are more than happy with a free iPad game, time with your family, and a cuddle in my lap.

Simple things have always been enough for you, and so, they will also be enough for me.

Carter, I wish that you will always be as happy as you are today.

That you will continue to love, unconditionally with your whole heart.

That you will always be confident and true to who you really are.

That you will always be THIS kind, and THIS caring, and THIS honest.

Happy 8th Birthday to the sweetest boy, with the purest heart and the most contagious laugh.

I love you to bits !!
Xoxo

“The same boy”

photo (4)

A year after we got married, we decided to start our family.
I got pregnant right away.
I was so body aware, that I knew we had conceived two weeks before I peed on the stick.

We were SO excited !
We were going to be parents !!!
We told everyone.
How could we possibly contain this information until week 12 ?!

9 weeks in, I miscarried.

Dreams were shattered, and our hearts were broken.
“Probably for the best”, I heard, “something must’ve been wrong with the baby”, and, “everything happens for a reason.”

All good intentions I’m sure, but to me it meant, “your baby wasn’t perfect, you wouldn’t want that one.”
“What a burden that would’ve been on your family.”

It was devastating !

I cried myself to sleep.
Many, many nights.

When we were ready to try for another baby, I became pregnant again rather quickly.
I was terrified.
We didn’t tell anyone.
We were cautiously excited.
As the 9 week mark approached, the anxiety of another miscarriage was too much to bear.
I broke down at my OB appointment and she arranged for an ultrasound to confirm viability.

One week later, we saw our little bean for the first time !
I instantly fell in love !!
You’d think the vision of our teeny baby on the screen was enough viability confirmation to put my mind at ease, but later that night I had an anxiety attack while lying in bed.
I couldn’t contain my tears.
The thought of losing another baby, was overwhelming me.
I pleaded to the universe to please let me carry this baby to term !
This baby deserved a chance, and I proclaimed that I would love this baby with every ounce of my being, “perfect” or “not”.
I longed to keep this baby.

The rest of the pregnancy went on without a hitch.

Carter, our first, was a dream baby !
My heart was bursting with love for him.
He was happy. All.the.time.
He was a good sleeper.
He transitioned to his crib with no problems !
He travelled well. In the car, on an airplane, it didn’t matter.
His two bottom baby teeth emerged without me even knowing.
He never complained.
He was so content and delightfully perfect !
It was like God had offered a condolence gift to us, for having suffered a loss.
Or at least, that’s how I saw it.
He was wonderful, and I felt honoured to be his Mom !

Just after his first birthday, we noticed he wasn’t meeting his milestones. The most prominent, was a speech delay.

We brought up our concerns with our Doctor.
Another 6 months passed and he wasn’t progressing.
We knew it was something more.

In April 2010, at 3.5 years old, he was diagnosed with Autism.
Before we left the specialists office, she said to us “Carter is the same boy you walked in here with, the diagnosis doesn’t change that.”

Those words resonated with me on the drive home.
She was right !
Well, sort of.
Our lives had just been turned upside down, and nothing was ever going to be the same.
Nothing, except Carter.
HE is the same.

The same little boy we walked in with.

The one I wished for and proclaimed to love with all of my being, no matter what.
And I did.

I still do.