Motherhood is such a wild ride, isn't it? As someone who does NOT love roller coasters, its not a wonder I find myself hanging on by a fraying thread at the end of many days.
I love my children.
I loved them at the snuggly baby stage. I adored their chubby, cherubic toddler stage. I found humor in the grade school years. I even kind of liked when they ventured into teen-land because I had someone to trade barbs with.
I love being a mom.
I love the role of care-giver/ass-kicker all rolled into one cute-boot-wearing package. I love that they come to me for signatures on things, as though their father didn't learn the art of cursive writing. I love that I let them choose their birthday dinner menus and most of the time they choose a meal I make rather than some restaurant menu meal.
These things - they are the upsides, ya' know?
Because despite what you see in Insta-world or on Facebook or on the Christmas card photo - the good Lord knows these times are met with an equal amount of times where you cannot fathom who these little demons are in your house and what you did to deserve their presence.
Which is why I like to talk about these things. Because they're real and yet so many people (moms) pretend they're not.
Ladies: mommin' is not the Tooth Fairy. It is not all sparkly and magical fluttering. If we're comparing it to things that happen in the middle of the night - its more like the flu bug. (Why? Why does the throwing up begin at the horrific hour of 1am?!?!) and it is not. always. pretty.
In the real land of momming, it sometimes looks like the aftermath of a category six hurricane.
But dammit it all if its not scary as a soap opera character in blue jeans to show THAT side of it on your social media.
Isn't that why we take anywhere between 8 to 14 photos of every occasion. To post the "best" one?
I am certain, (I mean I haven't actually asked them but) that the person who came up with the idea of LIVE iPhone photos did so to never have to show those pesky moments where Awkward Ally lived up to her nickname. Just click, scan to find the one millisecond where Ally has some semblance of a smile and make THAT your posted memory.
Then sit back and relish in the comments. Awww, Ally looks so grown up here!
These kids of yours get cuter every day, I swear it!
Ally looks just like her Momma here. A beauty!!
Well done, LIVE creator, well done. Thank you for assisting us in the task of making sure every. freaking. second looks picture perfect. For ensuring that no photo shows what life really looks like because, sometimes, ugh - that stuff ain't pretty.
Hey - I'm not here to say "shame on you" for posting only good pics. I do that crap too. (Really, did you think I was going to post the photo where my kid is laughing so hard he looks like a relative of Mr. Ed?!?)
Because 1) that's not nice to my kid and 2) I want to show the good moments.
As do many of you.
So this is not me saying you shouldn't post your happy times.
This is not me asking you to occasionally post a less-than-perfect photo. Its your life. Its your social media - who the heck am I to tell you what to post?!
This is me reminding you that for every darling photo you see of your neighbor's kids on their first day of school or your cousin's twins sharing a Twin Pop or your sister's boys jumping in the lake together - there are likely 13 more on their phones that do NOT LOOK LIKE THAT.
I don't care what you see in the photos of Duchess Kate.
I don't give two craps about the Kardashian children all wearing the same shade of white (and not a speck of dirt. How?!?!)
Celebrity. Regular person. Friend. Family member. It doesn't matter...
I assure you the other photos are there. (Or they were, unless they're in the Recently Deleted file already.)
So, the next time your Mom Coaster is on the way downish and you take seven photos trying to capture a moment and realize in every. stinking. one. of them someone has their eyes squinted shut, or is flipping off the camera or maybe the kids look cute but your bra is hanging out to dry in the background in an uncroppable way - laugh it off.
And hey, good news - like all good roller coasters, after the "down" there's an "up" headed your way.
Take lots of photos. When your child is near graduation age it will give you LOTS of things to look at, decide over and reasons to shed tears.
You will never regret taking them. The good. The bad and the ugly alike because, they're yours. Your moments. Your kids. Your memories.
Perfectly goofy looking?
Maybe not really perfect. But perfectly real.