As Joe said on our date last week "they see a mom who is busy momming her four kids. A mom who has it together and is good at momming and doesn't have time for much else besides momming." Has it all together? Ha. Hardly! But it was sweet of him to say regardless.
Last fall on a crazy Saturday evening a fellow resident's wife dropped by our house to grab a dress. (Her dress.) I knew she was coming but I didn't know exactly what time she was coming. Meaning I tried to have myself, my kids and my house somewhat presentable. Oh and quiet because my husband was sleeping the day away in our bedroom closet as he was on week 3 (of 4) of night shifts. Despite my best efforts neither me or my children were the least bit presentable when she stopped by. My house wasn't either for that matter! Instead I was a sweaty hot mess with my unwashed hair thrown up in a crazy messy pony tail. Seriously I was a mess. In fact I didn't hear her at the door...or the multiple text messages she sent me. So I ended up chasing her down the street with a fresh out of the bath naked Levi on one hip. Yelling her name like a mad woman as I ran. Thankfully she heard me and came back. I then proceeded to offer her banana bread while simultaneously holding (a still naked) Levi and brushing my fresh out of the bath only wearing towels girls' hair. Isaiah was on the couch dismantling an old cell phone resting his foot on ice. He immediately and in great detail explained to her how he had just fallen out of our tree and now was unable to walk on his foot. Not surprisingly she declined the banana bread, grabbed the dress and made a hasty exit. Smart girl:)
In that moment I looked around at my house which was in shambles. I looked at my children in their mostly unclothed and overly hungry and tired state. One of whom was possibly in need of a trip to the emergency department for a foot X-ray. I didn't need to look in the mirror to know I was less than presentable. And I thought to myself "well if that wasn't the WORST impression I could give someone I don't know what is!" And as I made popcorn for my children's dinner which was to be served while watching Netflix once again I assumed that would be the last I would be seeing of that girl. I also assumed I had scared her away from motherhood forever! I was exhausted and overwhelmed by life that day. And it showed. Or so I thought.
About a month after that evening Joe and I were attending a residency event without our children. This same resident's wife was also at the event. And while we were talking in a small group of ladies she mentioned that evening. Inwardly I cringed. But outwardly I smiled as she retold that little encounter to all who would listen. However as I listened my smile went from forced to genuine. In fact as she recounted that little encounter I couldn't help but laugh. Her perspective was completely different than mine and far more hilarious! It was refreshing. In her mind I was the picture of a cool, calm multitasking mother. Juggling it all well. Her interpretation of that evening was MUCH different than mine. And far better! She dubbed me "Ninja Mom". Because apparently holding a naked baby on one hip while brushing another child's hair is quite impressive! Who knew? Not me. I just thought that was hum drum mom stuff.
In the eight months since that evening I've been at several events with this girl and she ALWAYS introduces me as ninja mom and tells the story with great enthusiasm. And it always puts a great big smile on my face.
So maybe I am momming alright after all. And I'm happy to have that be the person the world sees.