On Motherhood

My Daughter and her Dolls…. A Letter About Motherhood.

My daughter is 3.  Everyday, all day, she sits at my feet and begs me to play “babies” with her.
 
“After breakfast will you play babies with me, Mommy?”  
 
 
“Mom, can you play babies with me after Daniel Tiger?”
 
 
“When you are done going potty, will you be the Daddy… and then I will be the Mommy?” 
I can’t shake this little girl… she is relentless.  No matter what my excuse, she has a come back that I cannot turn down.  Between the sink full of dishes, the exploding dirty diapers, and running from very vicious laundry monsters, who the heck would willingly “PLAY” house!!!!  Eeeekk… can’t I get a break, even in imaginary land?  What about playing dress up, or hair stylist, or doctor?!?!
But, alas, the twinkle in her eye pierces my little heart and all of a sudden my to-do list shrivels up and the windex falls from my hand and I am heading to her room and I am on the floor feeding 16 babies oatmeal for breakfast.
As I am sitting there in a floor full of babies, I realize something….Playing babies is nothing like real life at all…. what was I dreading???? This is a dream!!!  No crying, no whining and a bunch of clean babies with smiles plastered to their faces (literally) grinning back at me!!
As I watch my little girl tend to her tiny orphanage of unclothed babes I laughed.  If she only knew what a REAL baby was like… (muhahaha)
Dear Zadie,
Did you know that…
1: Real babies cannot be picked up by their heads and carried around. 
While I know this is a viable solution for transporting tiny plastic humans, please do not resort to this tactic in real life.  Your baby will probably suffer long term brain damage and hopefully someone will call the authorities on you.  Shame, shame.
2: Real babies take more than 1 bite.
I realize that as you are feeding your babes lunch, they only require one quick and easy bite of food for an entire meal… wellllll not so much with real babies.  Not only do they require more than 1 bite of food, it also requires the fine art of getting the food into the babies mouth.  This will at times, require funny noises, silly faces and throwing all your dignity out the window.  … Yea, and I am not sure when that dignity returns.
3: Real bottles don’t refill themselves. 
If someone wants to make millions and millions, possibly trillions, of dollars, make a real bottle that fills itself back up with milk… or orange juice… (or a little Benadryl)… because I know a trillion moms who would buy it, and then kiss your feet as they throw wads of cash in your face.  Yes.  Someone, please, invent this. ( I swear I will be refilling bottles and sippy cups until they are in college.)
4: Real babies, they don’t stay where you put them. 
I know it is fun to line up all 24 of your babies to go to sleep…. it must be, I can’t imagine.  See, I have been fighting this very fight for 6 years now… trying to lay a baby in one single place and then be able to shut off the lights and return in the morning.  Yea… it has never turned out like I plan.  I probably would have 24 kids if I didn’t have to argue with a brick wall to get them to stay in their bed at bedtime…. and then, to wake up without elbows and toes in my face the next morning, that would be nice too.
5: Real babies cry… they cry a lot.
Out of all your baby dolls, one of them cries.  That one baby has a paci sewed to her chest.  When you put the paci in said baby’s mouth, the crying ceases and cooing commences.  Well.  Wouldn’t that be nice.  (No, not sewing a paci to a babies chest… but that would be ah-mazing too!)  A house full of babies that didn’t cry, not even one little wince… yummmmm, I could just eat all those imaginary babies up with a spoon.  I love them already and they don’t even exist.
You know what, Zadie.  I was there too.  I played babies when I was three…and then a long time after that… and I loved it.  I loved picking out their little outfits and brushing their hair.  I loved being their mommy then…. but now… I reaaallly love being your Mommy today.  You know why?  Because…
Real Mommies get REAL hugs and kisses.
 
Real Mommies get to watch squirmy little boys drift off to sleep after hours of rocking, back and forth, back and forth. 
 
Real Mommies get to listen to their child sound out their first words and paint their first pictures. 
 
Real Mommies laugh as they watch their babies smear themselves with spaghetti for 20 minutes at dinner and then spend the rest of the evening cleaning it up. 
 
Real Mommies cry big huge crocodile tears as their teensy little baby walks through the halls to kindergarten. 
 
Real Mommies can kiss boo-boos away with magical superpowers. 
 
And when Real Mommies are having the very worst days, they get to hear small voices say”I love you”, which makes everything worth it. 
Keep rocking those little dolls, sweet girl.  Pick them up by the head as often as you want, and enjoy those silent cries and imaginary bellies needing food…. but know that none of the luxuries your wittle-fake-babies offer compares to the beauty that real motherhood has ahead.
Oh, and there will be crying, lots of crying.  (By both baby and Mommy…)
Never say I didn’t warn you.
But, the sweetness brings so much more joy.
Thanks for Reading, friends.
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