By Heather Keenan
The joy of having kids is immeasurable. From the moment their sweet little newborn bodies are placed into your arms, it is love at first sight. They are so beautiful with their perfect baby noses and lips you feel as though you could just eat them up. There is nothing more satisfying than smelling a new baby. And all of those things are what you are told when you are pregnant. What no one seems to mention, is that all of that angelic-ness does not last. Kids are, in one word, gross.
I get it, I do, it isn’t their fault that they’re walking germ balls. That does not, however, make them any less gross. Those perfect smelling infants change and they change with a quickness. In no time at all the spit up sets in and the projectile poop. That’s right, projectile. If we are being honest, it doesn’t really go anywhere but down from there.
By the time those sweet babies are in preschool, they have basically turned into a walking Post-It note. They stick to everything and no one seems to know what exactly the stickiness on them even is. Truth be told, you probably don’t WANT to know what the stickiness on them is. They touch and retouch everything 350 times an hour and proceed to then lick their hands for no good reason. I am assuming the reason is to remove said stickiness. They wonder from room to room in your house slinging saliva and snot as if its fairy dust. If it is able to show fingerprints, they will touch it. They use their food as finger paint. I could go on, but I think you get it.
Then they hit the Pre-K years and you imagine how clean your life will be because, they are big kids now and big kids can not possibly be as germ inviting as preschoolers. Right? Wrong. Now it is just a whole new level of nasty. Sure, they are able to use the bathroom alone, but that whole wiping thing is a but tricky. You could definitely let them wing it and do it on their own, but trust me when I tell you that mess will catch up to you when you are least expecting it and it will not be pretty.
What is that I see? Grade school?! Oh for sure the sticky will end there. My child will be showering on her own and brushing her own teeth. She will be the poster child for self hygiene. I am hilarious, aren’t I? While by this point the drooling, due to not being aware enough to swallow spit, is gone, they still have a long way to go. For reasons beyond my mental capability they enjoy running their hands along every wall, rail and store shelf they see. They are literally their own Swiffer Sweepers. Dust? No problem, they’ll get it. Spilled creamer on that aisle? They’ve got you covered. They’ll just store those germs right there on the cuff of their sleeve for that mega sneeze they are about to have. Wipe! There, all better.
Sure, it would be nice for veteran moms to warn the newbies about the foulness that will be brought into their lives by that wonderful bundle of joy but I get why they don’t. They don’t because dealing with all things body function is a small price to pay to have such love in your life. You may be wearing the same stain covered sweatpants for the fourth day in a row, but you are loved, more than you will probably ever know. Those rugrats may not have the words to express what we moms mean to them, but it is a lot. We mean everything to them and they show us with wet, sloppy, snot kisses and sticky hands. How lucky are we? The luckiest.
So, while I am envisioning a time where the only snot, pee and poop I deal with is my own, I will comfort myself with the knowledge that this too shall pass and when it does, I just might miss it. Maybe.