I’m not proud of it, but every once in a while I fall apart. Work stuff, family stuff, or simply life in general with its hurricanes and school closings and that mother of all parenting nightmares, daylight savings, conspire to do me in. I’ll find myself in my bathrobe in the middle of the day, crying into my third cup of coffee and wishing a piano would fall on me so I could have a nice, relaxing stay in the hospital. That’s when I know things have to change.
This time, I knew that a yoga class or a pumpkin spice latte was not going to cut it. I had to bring out the big guns: a massage, a night out on the town, Anthropologie. Not only that, but I decided I was going to cut myself some major slack at home. Goodbye, Super Mom. Hello, Slacker Mom.
Instead of slaving away on a home-cooked meal for my family, I pulled 3 random things out of the freezer, nuked them, and dumped them in a bowl. The boys gobbled it up without a word of complaint. This from a couple of kids who – when I served the delicious falafel I’d made them because they like chickpeas and I figured, it’s fried, what’s not to like? – said to me, and I quote, “Eww! That looks like poop with leaves in it.” That’s called PARSLEY, you little ingrates!
Instead of being the family social director and designated shopper, I delegated a birthday party to my husband. I forwarded him the Evite and sent him a link to the exact present to get. This led to my son almost attending a random kid’s birthday party instead of the one he was invited to, because my husband dropped him off at the curb and then ran to Target to buy the present – DURING the party. But hey, it all worked out.
Instead of making myself crazy attending every single school event, I decided to skip the Halloween parade. My son neither noticed nor cared. Maddeningly, though, he did ream me out for accidentally-on-purpose forgetting Picture Day. I’m sorry, but in this day and age of free, instant digital photography I’m supposed to send in a big fat check for a picture I won’t see until it’s printed and may include a visible booger and half-closed eyes?! No thanks.
So guess what? My temporary slackerdom had zero negative repercussions. The earth didn’t stop spinning. No one died. In fact, no one even noticed Mommy was taking a much-needed time out. Huh. How ‘bout that? Maybe I should consider having a near-nervous breakdown more often.
LAUGH O’ THE DAY: My unpopular meal spawned a catchphrase. Later that night my 6yo yelled, “Last one to brush their teeth is a rotten falafel!” It’s like the tuggets all over again.
LINK O’ THE DAY: Speaking of kid-related kitchen disasters, my essay about last year’s ill-fated contribution to the kindergarten Thanksgiving feast has been published in the Christian Science Monitor. Jeez, I could make a whole career out of my culinary failings. Care to share yours? We can publish an anthology!