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I gave up on the idea of cute outfits and getting all dressed up when I didn’t have a girl. And when I didn’t have a girl again….and again. The idea of getting dressed up had less and less appeal. I mean, quite honestly when you flip through the pages of the advertising circulars or catalogs around the holidays, there are all the most ADORABLE outfits for little girls and bigger girls, but hardly anything comparable for boys. And since my boys (and their dad) really are not into getting dressed up….even for me… it makes the whole process unpalatable when you have to fight over it. So I gave up. Like other things, what I wanted or thought I wanted faded away. Less of me and more of what other people want. Guess what, my boys are starting to realize that even their friends actually get dressed up and dress clothes are important like for occasions like semi-formal dances. And they also are learning that I am not wonder mom….in fact really far from it. The harder I try, the harder I fail. I am not a miracle worker and cannot pull a set of dress clothes perfectly ironed and ready to go from out of my hat (okay so I don’t wear a hat, but you get the picture) on a moment’s notice. Especially when they are teenage boys. Why you might ask? Why? Well, I will tell you. Because the darn kids grow…in fact, they grow lots and they grow out of things that only fit them months ago or even weeks ago. Why the rant you might ask? Because tonight was one of the best endings to an already less than perfect week with a kid in tears because he didn’t actually tell me (he will beg to differ) that he intended to wear dress clothes to his dance this evening. Dress clothes that he hasn’t worn in months and which, guess what, didn’t fit him the way he would have liked them to. With little time to waste, we had to pull together another outfit which while quite acceptable, was not what he wanted. And guess what, he wasn’t happy and I failed again to be the wonder mom.
The myth of perfect mothers, perfect wives, perfect lives, perfect holidays and perfect birthdays are really nothing more than commercial efforts to make us feel like crap when they don’t happen. Really, honestly truly, like crap. As women in particular we are raised with ideals, the perfect dress for our wedding, the perfect wedding, the perfect husband or boyfriend, the perfect family, the perfect friends, the perfect romantic evening or date or get away. And guess what, we are all human and none of those things exist. Yet we are raised to believe that they do and we are disappointed and demoralized when it doesn’t happen the way “it is supposed to”. The trick I guess to getting over the way “it is supposed to be” or the way one “hoped it would be” is to get away from the expectations. Dispel the myth. There is no wonder mom and there never will be. She is dead. Or more precisely she never existed in the first place. Just like all the other “perfect” ideals. Girlfriends, in case you didn’t realize it, the knight in shining armor is dead, his horse ate him and the coyotes ran away with the bones. Get over it and you will hopefully be much happier. I am trying….not doing a good job of it at times, but desperately trying.
Okay, so after reading about everyone and their brother making cheese, I decided that it’s my turn. Well, our turn. A group of friends have been talking about doing it and I think that this is the perfect time of the year, assuming of course that I can stop my frequent visits to Rutland Regional Medical Center’s emergency room (but then I am running out of children who can get injured so that might be possible). I am also going to pick a couple cabbages and start sauerkraut. I made some two years ago and as long as you remember to rinse the salt out, it tastes really good.