Selfish?

There are oh so many things that drive me crazy as a mom.  The list would be miles long if I had to type it all out.  But, recently, I think I’ve found the thing that drives me the absolute most crazy…the fact that whenever I am trying to do one of the three things I need to do to get ready in the morning in the bathroom (brush my teeth, brush/blow-dry my hair and put my face cream on), one or both of my children come into the bathroom with me and completely wreck the place while they know I’m distracted.

They unroll the toilet paper, take things out of the garbage, put things into the garbage that shouldn’t go into the garbage, put tissues and/or toilet paper that is unused into the toilet, remove all the Q-tips from the container, remove all the cotton balls from the container, attempt to use any one of the thousands of products we have in there that they shouldn’t use (deodorant, face cream, mouth wash, razors, tweezers, makeup, the list goes on and on), climb up onto the counter, climb up onto the toilet, jump on the scale, bang on the mirror, open every drawer and every cabinet, and just generally make the room into a living hell for me.

My bathroom is very, very tiny and I’m claustrophobic and I feel that I should be allotted 10 minutes (or less) to myself in there to do the three simple things I need to do.  So, this is a daily battle with my kids because they won’t stay out of the bathroom when I’m in there and, when I lock them out, they spend those ten minutes on the other side of the door screaming and crying as if someone is murdering them with an ax.  Thank goodness we don’t live in an apartment building anymore because I’m sure someone would have called CPS on me by now.

So, I can either lock them out and listen to the screaming and crying while I’m trying to get ready and not let it upset me (which seems impossible), or I let them come into the bathroom and I yell at them for ten minutes about the myriad of things they’re doing that they’re not supposed to be doing.  I’ve tried putting on a video or TV show for them while I get ready but they somehow inherently know what’s going on and – at least my little one – find their way to the bathroom anyway.

It drives me absolutely bonkers every morning.  The only way I’ve ever not had this be a problem is if I manage to blow-dry/brush my hair and put my face cream on while my husband is still home and then I brush my teeth in the kitchen sink – no joke – later.  

I don’t know how many of you watch Parenthood.  If you don’t, you should.  It’s truly a great TV show.  Last week, one of the adult children accused his (life-long) SAHM of being selfish.  She responded with, “Selfish?  Okay, let me put this into some perspective for you.  I spent over 30 years of my life taking care of four kids.  Some of whom are still living in my house and coming home for lunch.  And I spent most of my adult life compromising myself and what I want for your father.  I have always put myself second, or third, or fourth or fifth or sixth.  I’ve cooked your dinners.  I have packed you school lunches.  I have driven you to play dates and practice and done your laundry well past when I should have.  And now, when I assert one thing that I want, one thing, you and your dad and everyone else can’t take it.  So, that’s selfish?  Excuse me.”

YES.  Yes, yes, yes, and more yes.  I am using that speech someday.

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