War wounds

Concentrating hard on the plastic spoon she had been given, a ten-month old flailed wildly and poked KD right in the eye tonight after dinner. And I empathized aloud that one of my top ten least favorite bits of motherhood are the daily, painful injuries. Spoon to the eye, elbow to the nose, top of head to soft part under the chin, knee to the innards–these add injury to the insult of not owning any minute of your day. You can’t get mad when an infant wallops you as she flails about, but it still hurts. You can’t get mad when a toddler accidentally slams your solar plexus trying to get to a book. But it still hurts. You can’t get mad when a preschooler bashes your nose trying to climb into your lap. But it really hurts.

And I can’t help but point out to the small people whose elbows seem to have the north pole magnet to my breast’s south pole: I never got hit in any of my other jobs. (Nobody even pushed me, except out of a meeting. Metaphorically.)

2 thoughts on “War wounds

  1. sigh. your book review is thorough. i have not read any parenting books, these past two years. i can barely get through chapters in the sears book about fevers and spontaneous, unanticipated vomit-fests. but what i do know is that it is extremely difficult to get through a day feeling like everyone is on track and you haven’t traumatized your little peep/s in somehow. stay at home mothers, and i guess fathers, too (though they are somehow being heroic if they stay home with their children, while mothers are simply sitting around eating bon-bons, wasting their precious quiet time writing blogs and indulging selfish pursuits, like eating a meal, going to the crapper, drinking a hot cup of coffee, scraping dried yogurt off the walls…) are unappreciated and unsung.

    staying home with my daughters, day in, day out, can be lively and exciting when things are going well, then turn to complete shit in as short a time. then i feel like complete shit. and i don’t get any money. and nobody thinks i do anything all day. motherhood has its rewards, which are infinite and deep, and i think it has just as many setbacks and frustrations. and doing your best, assuming you’re making a real go of it, is plenty. mothers are very hard on themselves, and society is very hard on mothers. i want to go off by myself for 6 months and paint and smoke weed. but don’t want to leave the girls for more than a long weekend. this is a hard job.

    also, i got head butted in my chin earlier today, then accidentally elbowed my eldest in the back of her head. humanity is a painful proposition for everyone. IT HURTS.

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