As many of you know, I’ve been a foster mother in the past and currently have four adopted children. So, for many years in my life (many dark, dark years) I had five or more children under the age of five (like I said, dark, dark years). I can remember buying caseloads of diapers for months on end. Caseloads—no I am not kidding. But I digress.
This blog post isn’t about how I became the fastest diaperer in the west; it’s about how I succeeded by cheating.
Yes, parental cheating.
You see, everyone who knew me constantly told me they were amazed that I could do so much. I’d smile and thank them, and walk away smirking because I cheated. Still do, for that matter.
How, you ask?
Well, for starters, my children believe that wearing pajamas is something you do when you have guests over. The rest of the time, I’d put those puppies to bed in their clothes for the next day. Shocked? Don’t be.
I cleaned the bathtubs and showers by letting my kids play with shaving cream in them. They had fun and my bathroom both sparkled and “smelled like a man, man.” In case you’re interested, it works on patio furniture as well.
I’ve never made my kids make their beds either. Not. Ever. Whenever people came over, we threw the blankets across the bed and piled the stuffed toys on top. No one ever knew. With that many kids, it’s just not a battle worth fighting.
You see, with six or more young children around, you learn what’s necessary and what’s not pretty quickly. So, when you come to my house, be prepared to have fun, but don’t expect pj’s. They really just aren’t that important.
So why am I sharing this rather TMI post with you?
Because I’m still cheating, but in a very different way, and I hope you are, too.
You see, cheating is just being smart and getting rid of the stuff that honestly doesn’t matter so that you can get to the stuff that does.
For me, that meant focusing on family and writing and getting rid of a few television shows and a lot of guilty pleasures. It also meant teaching my kids to do their own laundry.
So, I’m sitting at our local mall as I write this while I watch my daughters shop (from a distance because it’s “waaay creepy when you follow us all stalker style, Mom.”)
I’m writing, and I’m with my kids, and that’s what matters.
Do you cheat? I hope so.