A mother's shower

A mother's shower: Not to be confused with a baby shower


Oh, boy. I stink! I’d better grab a quick shower.

“Jill, I’m going to shower. Can you keep an eye on Gordon in the bath? Thanks!”

I'd better be quick.

Come on, water! Get warmer.

Ahhh, finally. That feels nice. Wait, what's that noise?


“Mom, I can’t get the hot water to stop on the bidet.”

“Do you mean can’t get the water to turn cold or you can’t turn it off at all?”

“I can’t get it to turn off at all.”

“Is it shooting out all over the floor or just in the bidet?”

“Just in the bidet.” 

“Okay, thanks for telling me. I’ll figure it out when I’m out of the shower.”

Where was I? Okay, shampoo. Quick, quick, quick. Oh, not again.

“Mom, I don’t have any more clean underwear.”

“Yes, you do. It’s in the laundry basket in your room waiting for you to put away on your shelves.”

“Where?”

“Your clean clothes are in your room. In the corner—in the laundry basket.”

Okay, rinse. Conditioner. Better hurry! Well, here's another one.

“Mom, did you see the new paper art I made?” 

“The one you taped on the wall over my bed?” 

“Yes, that one!” 

“Oh, it's beautiful. Thank you for making my room look so nice with your art.”

Didn't I already say I liked it two days ago when it appeared above my bed? Why is now the time to tell me? Oh well. Uhhh, right soap. Get the soap. Gah—it's so slippery! Hurry, hurry, hurry.

“Mom, I got the baby out of the bath, and he pooped on the floor.” 

“On tile or rug?” 

“On the tile.” 

“Okay, please just make sure no one steps in it, and I’ll deal with it when I get out. Oh, and help the baby get in the bidet to clean himself. Thank you!!!!”

Ahhh! Rinse this soap off. Where's my towel?

"Ahhh!"

There’s a kid in my bathroom staring at me.


—————-

Some days I feel like there is always someone watching me. Evaluating me. Listening to what I say. (That is unless I’m telling them to clean up or do homework: Then somehow I'm never heard.) There is always someone seeing what I do. Evaluating. Learning. Mimicking. Witnessing how I act when I’m angry. Sometimes seeing me blow up. Viewing my methods for calming down. Hearing me say I’m sorry when I’m in the wrong. 

I’m always kept accountable for my behavior by four tiny judges.

I’ll never forget when Jill looked at me and said, “Mom, you didn’t talk very nicely to Danny just now. You didn't speak with love.” (I always tell them to “speak with love.”)  I’m so proud to have a relationship where she knows she can call me out, proud that she knows I too should be held accountable to our family's rules. Off I went to apologize to Daniel, because she was right. I had forgotten to talk with love in my voice.

—————-

And then this happened: the other day I was left alone for TWO HOURS. I couldn’t believe it. And no one was fighting. I laid in bed and read a book. It was amazing. When I finally went downstairs, Alice said, “Oh, look! Mom is home. We thought you were at Daddy’s work.” They didn't even miss me. In hindsight, that would have been a great time to take an uninterrupted shower!

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