Tag Archives: hoarders

Good thing I’m not one of those sentimental moms

I vowed long before I ever had children that I would never be one of those overly sentimental mothers. You know the kind. The ones that make keepsakes out of their children’s teeth and first baby curls, like some sort of socially acceptable child body part hoarder. The ones who cry at their kid’s kindergarten graduation ceremony (like that’s actually a thing, an actual important event). The ones who “ohh” and “ahh” and frame little junior’s drawing of a green horse that looks, let’s be honest, like a nauseous Jabba the Hutt.

But not me. Nope. I mean, come on. The whole POINT of having children is to raise them, to turn them into fully functioning adults who can wipe their own boogers and climb off the couch in a manner that doesn’t resemble a sky diving incident gone horribly wrong. Not keep them in some sort of infantile limbo. Hell, my son is currently too young to even understand, let alone say, “Mom, come wipe my butt” and already I’m looking forward to the day I never have to hear that sentence ever again.

And then…

And THEN…

You knew there was an “and then” coming, didn’t you? Of course you did. You’re not an idiot like I am.

And then my son needed a haircut. His first. Too many “what an adorable little girl!” comments from other people and too many “stop sucking on your bangs” reprimands from me finally pushed my hand. Not that I was putting off his first haircut or anything.

That would be too sentimental.

I waited until the morning of the day he was going to have his pictures taken by my photographer cousin. Not that I was waiting until the last possible moment or anything.

That would also be too sentimental.

It just, uh, happened to work out that way. And don’t you dare think for one second that me scheduling the hair appointment to coincide with a trip to visit family in my hometown in Ohio (800 miles from my current home in Boston) just so my high school friend would be the one to cut Riker’s hair had anything to do with sentimentality. It didn’t, ok? It didn’t.

It was simply because I couldn’t stand the thought of some stranger’s dirty, disgusting hands pawing through my baby’s pristine ginger curls and heartlessly chopping them off like they DIDN’T EVEN MATTER. Like they weren’t made from the most precious stuff ON EARTH.

And yes, I’m sure that the fact that I asked Samantha if she could cut me off just ONE of his curls as a keepsake looks, from the outside, like a sentimental request. But I was just being practical. In case, you know, something, god forbid, ever happened to Riker and we needed a sample of his DNA to give to a mad scientist who would then use it to create Riker’s identical clone.

And sure, then asking her to cut off another keepsake curl might seem a bit ridiculous, but hey, you never know. Something could always happen to Riker’s clone and it’s always good to have a backup-backup plan.

And ok, FINE! Perhaps asking for that third curl to also be cut and gingerly wrapped up in plastic was overkill. But what if, I don’t know, a fire destroyed the first curl and then a plague of baby hair-eating locusts destroys the second one? What then, huh? Am I still being overly sentimental? Or just incredibly reasonable and forward-thinking?

So, plainly, as you can see, I have kept to that vow I made long ago to never be one of those overly sentimental parents. Even now, with my baby’s new haircut making him look 37 and the fact that I can’t remember the last time he fell asleep on my chest and tomorrow he’ll be leaving for college and he’ll never call me and then he’ll move away and I’ll never see him and then he’ll have his own kids but be too busy to come visit because the office is undergoing a regime change but maybe next year, Mom, and cat’s in the cradle and some junk about a silver spoon or something…

…Sigh…

And all of that will be just fine by me.

I have my shrine of three baby curls, two dozen or so teeth and that damned ugly Jabba horse to keep me company.

 

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Hoarders on a Road Trip

Indulge me for a second, if you will. I want you to close your eyes and picture the following:

You’re driving down the Interstate, minding your own business. Perhaps you’re heading home after a long day of work or maybe you’re picking your kid up from soccer practice. Or it could even be that you’re on your way to dinner reservations with your in-laws, which you’re dreading because Phil always has too much to drink and then plays his favorite game of “Insult His Daughter’s Husband Until It’s Time for Dessert,” after which you will go home and get in a huge fight with your wife because she never stands up for you, oh no, she could never stand up to her ultra-macho, conservative father. No one stands up to Phil. Phil fought in the war, for crying out loud. And what have you done with your life, Shirley? He calls you Shirley. Just another way for him to emasculate you. Ugh. Phil. You hate Phil. So much.

Or whatever. I don’t know. I don’t know your life.

But the point is, you’re driving down the Interstate.

When all of a sudden you pass a tin can painted red that is disguised as a car (a Hyundai Accent, to be exact). Upon closer inspection of this “car,” you see the following:

Road trip 1

And for a second, all your troubles are forgotten since you can’t help but ask yourself “What the hell is going on in there?”

Well, let me tell you what the hell is going on in there. This past weekend, a man, a 7-months-pregnant woman and a neurotic dog with abandonment issues all thought it would be a great idea to take a 14-hour road trip to Ohio.

And it technically was a great idea.

In theory.

Where things went horribly, horribly wrong was on the way back.

See, the reason for the trip was so that the couple could have a baby shower with the majority of their family and friends. And granted, I’ve written in the past about how much I hate baby showers but let me tell you, it’s a whole new world when it’s being thrown in your honor. Turns out it’s just like having a birthday party, the only difference being that getting drunk, making out with someone and then crying on the bathroom floor about how old you are is generally frowned upon at the baby shower.

Now, they say it takes a village to raise a children. I don’t know if that’s true but I do know that it takes a village to afford one. And our village was EXTREMELY generous (big shout-out due here to all the future grandparents, great aunts and my 52 female cousins). This kid will truly never want for anything for at least the first year of his life (wanting a mom that doesn’t sing “Close To You” off-key before he goes to bed every night notwithstanding).

And we couldn’t be more grateful to everyone who came. However, it left us with the following dilemma:

Road trip 4

Luckily, all those years of my husband blowing off doing anything productive and eschewing socialization with actual humans to play Tetris instead paid off. He managed to get it ALL in there. Well, almost all. At one point, there was a fear of damaging the structural integrity of the car so he had to stop.

However, this meant we had to drive over 800 miles with a dog sharing the passenger seat, limited visibility out of all windows and boxes hitting the back of our heads even though the seats were pushed up as far as they could go (which was SUPER fun for the 6’2″ daddy to be).

And even that wouldn’t have been that bad if it weren’t for the fact that I am not the world’s greatest driver (for documented proof, click here or here or here) and that it had snowed the night before (Weather: If you don’t like it, you are probably in Ohio). For example, here is a fairly accurate representation of the construction we encountered (Construction: If you are dealing with it, you are probably in Ohio) within 30 minutes of leaving:

Road trip 2

No big deal, right? All I had to do was follow the signs for “Thru Traffic” since we were going, duh, “thru” the area and weren’t getting off of an exit for the next 200 miles.

But at 5 a.m. in the dark on snowy and icy roads with no caffeine in my system, this is what I saw:

Road trip 3

So I panicked and we spent the next 30 minutes trying to find the Interstate again from back country roads that had their very own banjo soundtrack.

Somehow we did it though. We made it back to Boston in one piece. Even the baby, who was squished for no less than 400 miles by a highly excitable dog. And on the plus side, I now have a new sympathy for hoarders.

I’m just dreading finding all those dead cats once I finally build up the stamina to put together the nursery.

I’m a better housekeeper than NASA

Oh, you read me right. I am officially better than some of the most brilliant minds on the planet at keeping my shiz in order. I may have dust bunnies the size of Sam Winchester* under my bed, but at least my trash isn’t orbiting the Earth and threatening to decimate Idaho.

Aprill: 1

Astrophysicists: 0

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Now, not to sound like these guys:

But did you guys read that article in the New York Times about how we are only just now considering doing something about the huge amount of space junk we so generously left behind for the past 50 years? Apparently, it’s becoming a hazard. Like, “hey, there are 20,000 pieces of junk just hanging out up there and most are the size of a Greyhound bus” kind of hazard.

Yes, we take the same healthy attitude of “meh” toward destroying space as we do with our very own planet.  

Luckily, the same brilliant minds who never considered the consequences of leaving huge piles of crap right above our heads have also come up with totally viable solutions to clean up their mess. In no particular order of ridiculousness, they are:

  • A giant net to round up wayward items
  • Giant balloons that would nudge wayward items away and make them Venus’ problem
  • Firing lasers from the ground
  • An $11 million vacuum cleaner called “CleanSpace One”

But perhaps my favorite idea is the Celestial Broom.**

If you’re having trouble picturing that, never fear. I drew a visual aid:

Now, I know I’ve written about my lack of domestic skills before (here and here and here, for example), and I’m not going to lie, I used to beat myself up about it.

But HA! Not anymore. Cause while I may currently be going commando because I’ve been too lazy to do laundry for three weeks, at least my mess isn’t large enough to warrant our Martian neighbors giving the TV show “Hoarders” a call.

*Bonus points for you if you get that nerdy reference

**Which would also make a great band name…DIBS!