Thursday, April 12, 2012

My gratitude for Poopy Diapers

I guess the fact that spell check doesn't recognize "poopy" should convince me not to use it in a title but if you read on you will understand {hopefully}.

The other day was one of those days as a mom where finding the joy in motherhood didn't seem very easy.  In fact it felt more like my children were finding their joy in driving me nuts.

Now I should back up a bit.  I have 3 kids ages 4 and under and then a 17 year old stepdaughter that lives with us full time and all this happened in the last 6 years.  I continued to work full time for the first two years and then part-time as a Non-Profit Manager for several more until I recently chose to be home full time.  I've officially hit the 6 month mark as a work at home mom and most days there is at least one, if not many more, moments I long to go back to my office for even just a few minutes!  A few hours of adult interaction, using my professional skills, heck I'd even do budgets again, just for a moment of not having a small child attached to my hip and another one or two begging for my attention.

So this was where I was at the other day... and where the "poop" enters the story.

My 4 year old who is completely potty trained had an accident for the first time in months!  My 3 year old who is about 90% potty trained had to have used the floor instead of the potty at least twice and my infant daughter needed to be changed at least every 30 minutes {or that is how I felt}.   It was reaching dinner time, I was frazzled, my husband had just gotten home and was headed upstairs with the boys.  I grabbed my daughter to put her in her high chair and discovered she needed to be changed, again!

"You have got to be kidding me!" I cried out {and I'm only partially exaggerating here}...

I walked to the changing table and began the process of changing my daughter and then suddenly it hit me.

In the midst of feeling sorry for myself and annoyed at having to change another poopy diaper I looked down at my little girl's face.  

In that moment I realized I had this all wrongSuddenly I stopped thinking about the diaper and really looked at this little baby.  

I thought for a minute how fast she is growing.  She was just 5 lbs when we she was born, so unexpectedly tiny I had to borrow premie clothing for her and yet almost 11 months later, on this day, she was just a few steps away from walking {she's now a few steps away from running!}.  I thought of my sons who every day amaze me with how big and grown up they are becoming.  I thought of my teenager who is just over a year away from going to college.  In that brief moment it suddenly hit me, that if in fact I got my wish for no more diapers, I would also no longer have a baby girl.  My gorgeous little Lucy Luc would be on to the next stage and my precious time with her as an infant would be gone.  

Maybe this doesn't make sense to anyone else but that realization, on that day, while changing what felt like the one millionth diaper of my life, has made me look at what used to feel like annoying or useless tasks just a little bit differently.  Because although some days it drives me crazy to hear "mommy, mommy, mommy..." all day long, I know there will be a day when they are much older where I will hope that just one time in a day they will need me and call "Mom".  In my six short years as a mom I have become to finally appreciate how fast these early years go and so for today I say... give me one more poopy diaper because that means I still have a sweet faced little baby.  A baby girl that I can snuggle, kiss and love on all I want. A baby with bright eyes and giggles that warm this mom's heart even in the dark hours of the night when I would rather be asleep.

So for today I am trying to remember this... the good always comes with the bad.  I may not like the diapers or the tantrums or the fighting between my little boys but I love the learning, growing, giggling, snuggles and those simple moments when one of them cuddles next to me and says, "Momma, I love you."

So because of the sweetness of those good moments, I'm learning day by day to accept the moments that aren't my favorite and remember that its my choice if I focus on the poopy diaper or instead focus on my daughter's sweet face.  It's my choice to show love even when I am tired because in the end I chose to be a mom and it is the best job in the world.

After all, how could looking at this face not be the better choice? {and yes those kicking feet are exactly what I get each and ever time, I thought I would share an authentic photo}

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