A Taco In The Backseat

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A Taco In The Backseat

Years ago, when I was in college, a good friend asked me to grab something out of the backseat of her car. In the dark of night, I could barely see enough to find what I was tasked to get, so I used my hands as a guide. Among all the items I rambled through, one I picked up was a soft taco still perfectly wrapped in restaurant paper that I immediately knew little hands had tossed there earlier that evening. When I returned to the house, I laughed hysterically as I told her what I had discovered. In fact, we laugh about it to this day. Over a decade later, that season has passed for my friend. Her little girl has grown into an incredible teenager, and my friend is far from those college days of attending classes, managing clutter, and going through the motions of raising a little person.

For me, though, those days are now in full swing.

You might not find a taco in my backseat, but you will most certainly find goldfish crumbs, toys, sports balls, and who knows what else. My house is no different. It’s funny because I can remember back to the days when I was a single lady living the bachelorette life. My place was so spotless that you could virtually eat off the floor. It was perfectly decorated, everything had a place, and I could literally tell if a throw pillow had been touched. I actually arrived places on time, was energetic, had alone time, was health conscious, and frequented the gym often.

Nowadays, my house is not my own. My body is not my own. My life is not my own.

I feel like I am constantly being pulled in multiple directions. I go through the motions of life, but I can never quite get ahead. I do not think I have been on time for anything since becoming a mom. My house is organized chaos. I am constantly cleaning, yet my children continue to live their best lives, leaving my house in total disarray. There are toys, toys, and more toys everywhere. My floors, though swept and mopped often, are almost always decorated with crumbs. A few of our walls have masterpieces adorned by our two-year-old Picasso in training, and I cannot remember the last time I made up our bed. We eat healthy meals sometimes, but my kids have eaten more air-fried chicken nuggets lately than any sane mother would care to admit, and sometimes their scraps become my actual meal when I can finally sit down to eat. Then, there is the loud, rowdy, never-ending noise. My home is constantly filled with it from when my children open their eyes until they close them at night. I have not had quiet alone time in years, and the last time I went to the gym, Kanye felt he should be president. Yes, it’s been that long.

My life is a true whirlwind these days, but what has made me begin to embrace the crazy is learning to relinquish control.

There is nothing in life that humbles you like motherhood. I had no idea that something I wanted so badly would make me lose the girl I used to know to become the one I now am. And you know what? I am learning to become perfectly okay with it because this is but a season, and seasons change.

While I sit in our family room typing this post, there are remnants of my family everywhere. My husband’s books are scattered on the couch, our floor is full of Legos, we ate leftovers again, and loads of laundry are calling my name. However, a shift in perspective makes me grateful for a present husband with a sound mind. Toys sprawled about in disarray make me thankful for the little people my husband and I created, and have the privilege of parenting. The constant noise makes me appreciate the company and blessing of family, and the trust and safe space to openly communicate. We have our health, a place to stay, food to eat, and most importantly, we have each other. The now is what matters most.

As we embark on another year full of new hope and positivity, I choose to embrace the craziness of today and find the fullness of this season in my life — no matter how raw and real it is. Soon enough, my little boys will be big ones, and the dynamic of our home will have changed. Yes, it will most likely be spick and span again, even quiet, and I bet I will have my energy back as I will have survived the full-out chaos of the early years, but man, will I miss the mayhem of this moment.

Let’s let go of what we want life to be, and embrace what it is and whatever the season may be. I believe 2023 will be much more enjoyable if we do.

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