Every night on vacation we asked Brantley his favorite part of the day. He’d usually tell us the pool (typically the last thing we did..toddler brain) and then he’d help us decide Brooks’ favorite part of the day. By the end of the week we all loved hearing Brantley and my two nieces’ favorites each night before bed.
So, naturally, on our way out of town, in the Dunkin’ Donuts drive through before getting on the highway for our 10 hour drive home, we asked Brantley his favorite part of vacation. Honestly, I can’t even remember what he said. I probably (hopefully) wrote it down with the other days’ faves in the notes section of my phone. This was followed by me asking Sam his favorite part. “Outside of it just being vacation and a great time, I’d say watching Brantley.” Then, it was my turn. I went to open my mouth and the tears came. I pulled my sunglasses onto my eyes (because if you ever need to cry and you don’t need it to be public knowledge, sunglasses will hide it all- you’re welcome for the tip) and took a breather. Sam, not phased by the silence, let it go for a few, then looked over to see a legitimate waterfall of tears coming from my eyes. We laughed, I grabbed myself a bag of Fritos at 7:30 a.m. (I recently figured out my body hates gluten, awesome!- road trip snacks are not nearly as fun anymore), and I tried to pull myself together. Sam asked again, and turns out the time it took me to eat the Fritos wasn’t quite long enough. Water works. Literally two hours later I was able to simply agree with Sam. Watching Brantley and my nieces play together and experience new things was simply the coolest thing.
Our house looks like a real life game of the I Spy books 90% of the time. There’s most likely some sort of music playing, the dog’s barking, and at least one kid is making some sort of odd noise. On any given day I’ve probably counted to three 15 different times. Brantley has peed outside twice because the plumbing inside the house isn’t that fun? The dog has cleaned up the left over food in the high chair and food covering the ground after every meal. I’ve talked myself out of that third cup of coffee and the living room looks like this. Chaos. Nearly alll the time.
On those same days I have two boys wrestling to get the best spot on my lap. I have a three year old who hears my favorite song on the radio and yells, “Mom, it’s your song! Volume this up!” That same three year old will do any favor I ask him (including running down two flights of stairs to get toilet paper because we are always out in the bathroom I’m using…how?). He’d rather be outside playing in mud, catching bugs, or running through the sprinkler than in the house. I have a one year old who is trying to make words we can’t quite figure out but momma sure does come out perfectly. That small fella adores his older brother and belly laughs when brother comes near. I have a husband who sends me out to pick up lunch when he sees all my marbles are about down the drain with no hope of returning.
You see, my favorite part is all of this. The everyday. The good, the bad, the ugly, the exhausting. I mean, I don’t love the blowout diapers or the tantrums, but aren’t they part of the package? If I didn’t have those, my favorite parts wouldn’t be as great. That chaos is my favorite thing. The snugs and the I love yous and the laughs. The moments when you think it is impossible for your heart to hold any thing else inside. They’re pretty grand too. Our pediatrician reminded me these two little humans are our most important job. Everything else can wait. I remind myself of this almost daily when I play my cards juuust right to get both boys down for a nap at the same time then have that never ending mental struggle of do I clean the house or do I nap? Rarely does being productive win.
If you need help embracing the chaos, let me know. I’ll bring coffee, we can make toy angels in your living room, I’ll find you the number for pizza delivery for dinner and we’ll order enough for left-overs. This phase is hard but I hear it goes so, so fast. Live in the chaos because one day this will be your favorite part. ❤️