Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Learning to let go.

For those of you who aren't aware, I have a bit of an OCD streak in me. I'm not a germaphobe or anything, but it's really things like big messes, dirty dishes, clutter, etc....that really bothers me. But, as is the case with many things after having a child, I'm slowly learning to let go of my OCD ways a little bit at a time. We spent Memorial Day weekend with Brian's family (post on that to follow) and while at a playground, Jake found this huge mud puddle:

The OCD Emmy inside of me was screaming "NOOOOOOOOO! Not the mud!!!!!!!! He's in a nice outfit!!!" But, the mommy part of me was on my other shoulder saying "Eh...who cares? He'll just get a bath later and you can wash the clothes". I let the mommy part of me win that argument & it was worth it. He had so much fun splashing around, just look at him! He was absolutely filthy afterward & we had to strip him down to put him back in the carseat, but I realized that it didn't really matter; hearing him giggle for 30 minutes while splashing around was all I needed to reassure myself and bat away that annoying OCD voice.

Other things still make me shudder a PlayDoh under his nails or sand stuck in every crevice of his body, or pouring out of his shoes when I take them off. Baby steps, right? :)

The other thing that I'm learning to let go of is a perfect house. I have a kid, there are going to be toys & sometimes, they won't all be where they're supposed to be at the end of the night. (maybe some of that is less about letting go of OCD, more about lacking the energy at the end of the night to care, but whatever) There will always be things around the house to do, but Jake is growing up too fast for me to miss out on things because I'm too busy cleaning the house or obsessing over keeping things organized.

Fortunately for me, Jake loves to run his play vacuum and always asks me to run the real vacuum at the same time, so I can sneak in some vacuuming and play with him, all at the same time ;)

Jake & I get home in the evening around 5:30. Brian gets home at 6:15 and we usually eat dinner shortly after that. That leaves us with approximately one hour between the end of dinner and the start of the bedtime routine to play and hang out with Jake after being gone all I let the dishes sit in the sink. I let the laundry sit in baskets folded, but not put away. I look past the crumbs on the counter, or the streaks on the windows that should be wiped off. And instead, I play with my kid. Yes, it sucks that at 8:15 after he's in bed, we're rushing around trying to clean everything & get stuff ready for the next day, but I'm ok with that.

I guess this is just another example of having to find balance as a mother; I know I can't get rid of all of my OCD ways, but OCD-Emmy & I will continue to find compromises and that works for me :)


Beth, Dave and Cori said...

I could have written this post as I struggle with this as well. A little bit at a time right? Hugs from one OCD mom to another!

Beth, Dave and Cori said...

PS - dosen't it just stink that the evening hours whiz by so fast? Little time to play as a family, and then once the kiddo is in bed, you have "chores". Ugh. I feel your pain there too!

Jeanna said...

What a great post! It's sooo true! I agree though, it's worth playing with them while you can and cleaning up when they are in bed-even though you just want to sit and relax:)

Mommy Relcuk said...

Shortly after we brought W and R home, my cousin gave me a little framed poem that has been passed around on that side of my family:

I hope that my child, looking back on today,
Remembers a mother who had time to play.

Cleaning and scrubbing can wait for tomorrow,
For babies grow up, we've learned, to our sorrow.

So settle down cobwebs, dust - go to sleep.
I play with my children 'cause children don't keep.

Mommy Relcuk said...

P.S. LLBean offers very reasonable priced "splash" pant that is great for puddle stomping. They are pretty much standard issue here in Canadialand, where the seasons are: Summer, Winter, Deep Winter, Mud.

Life with Pog & FLeC said...

Good for you Emmy! I struggle with this too. M likes to help me clean, but with C here now... well, I don't clean much. It sort of drives me crazy, but I'm trying to focus on what's *really* important. Keep it up!

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