Having children is an experience you don't want to miss. Creating a precious creature with the man that you love... puking for months on end... watching your belly stretch to an alarming size... grunting, sweating, screaming and crying as a team of people, most of whom you never knew before that day, stare expectantly at your hooch... the final emergence of that baby that marks its way by the destruction of your nether regions... and into your arms.
Instantly, all is forgiven and joy knows no bounds. Each milestone is met with the knowledge that your baby is the most wonderful baby in the world... until brothers and sisters join the team and you think that you and your husband are quite possibly the best baby makers of all time. And you believe that you will be the first set of perfect parents ever.
As the years go by, you slowly realize with each defeat by the parent brigade to the mob of children that it is a much harder job than you realized. Your parents who were complete idiots in the rearing of children begin to look... not quite so dumb. In fact, there begin to be times when you actually ask them for advice. And listen.
Then your children become teenagers. All illusions of familial grandeur are ripped from your mind. You may struggle to even recognize those wonderful babies in the accusatory glances and sour expressions of the morphing teen into adult through the anatomical acquiring of (ahem) extra body parts and pimply eruptions of frightening proportion. Gone are the parenting plans. It's survival time. Prayers for the return of Jesus become a nightly ritual. Ice cream becomes the booze you wish you had the guts to drink.
As they move out or go off to college and their numbers decrease in the home... and you're left with the youngest, but yet possibly the horriblest... you can feel yourself begin to relax a little bit. There is a light at the end of the proverbial tunnel after all. You still have sleepless nights as you try not to think of what your older children are up to... out there... on their own... in not the best part of town... or on that secular college campus... But, your worries are soothed by the salve of having your very own bathroom and an empty bed to crawl into when the snoring gets too loud in your own. You begin to have some assurance that, whatever may be coming down the pike, you will survive.
Then... your child comes home from college for a month long break. She sets up camp in YOUR bathroom... and uses your stuff... And leaves her stuff all over... And she uses the good washcloths to cleanse her eyes of black eyeliner and mascara... AND she's in her bed which is now your extra bed. It is okay. She's your baby girl and you want her home. Right? Right?!?!
Yes, OF COURSE!
Well, ummm, until you go to take a shower. There are towels all over the floor. The good ones. That's easy enough to overlook. You do happen to see as you walk down the hall to the bathroom that your daughter has recently showered as she applies make-up with dripping wet hair. It may cause a moment of hesitation, but you think to yourself... she's the only one to have taken a shower. There will be plenty of hot water...
Ummm. NO. Not even 2 full minutes of tepid water. By then you are committed. You must clench your teeth and do your routine as quickly as possible. No need for gentle circular motions with the apricot scrub. Splat that stuff into the middle of your palms and rub it into your face while trying your best to avoid your eyes. When it gets in your eyes, only think the bad words.
Don't use as much shampoo as you normally do to keep the amount of suds down and the length of time your head must be under the water, which by the way, will send sharp daggers of pain straight into your brain. It is okay to whisper bad words. No one is in the bathroom to hear you. Put the 2 minute conditioner into your hair, count to 60 as fast as you can, call it good and rinse. You might not be able to control yourself at this point and some bad words may be able to reach the ears of someone standing in the hall.
It will be getting harder to stand. Your body will be shivering... and if you glow in the dark like me... it will begin to take on a purply plucked chicken appearance. It is best to stand farther back from the water than usual. And never face the water. Never. You will need to fore go the body wash and puff. There's just no time and your cries will be uttering forth from your very depths with only your chattering teeth impeding their way as they rush out and envelope your home. Just lather up some soap and get the parts that can get stinky.
As you pull back the shower curtain and your body is flash frozen by the air wooshing at you... and the large mirror hasn't got the faintest bit of obliterating steam and you are forced to see your nakedness... go ahead and scream. Just let it all out. It matters not that the neighbors might hear. Your child... the child whom you sacrificed your very body for... the child who rudely and inconsiderately used ALL THE HOT WATER must hear your anguished cries. Somewhere, somehow, within her very soul she should feel some sort of remorse for what she has put you through.
Once back in your bedroom there might be a small knock on your door. You're filled with gratitude that your child does have a heart and open the door a small crack. You look into her beautiful face fully expecting an heartfelt apology and an, "I love you Mom!" She smiles at you and raises her thumb to her temple with her hand splayed out in typical Simon from American Idol fashion and says, "Sorry!" in her best British accent.
And that is my life.