Ring the Alarm

If there were someone out there looking for the next Big Idea, I’m going to lay it out for you right here—an alarm clock where the music and/or beep is replaced with a baby’s screams.

Because there is nothing else that can make a mom jump out of her seat—her skin, even—faster than the sound of a baby crying.

I’ve always considered motherhood the ultimate multitasking project, and today I wrote another chapter in my “Hey Mom, Figure-It-Out NOW OR ELSE” Handbook.

Allow me to set the scene:

1) 2pm, otherwise known as “Baby’s Nap Time”
2) Me
3) Baby, teetering on the edge of “losing her shit”
4) Car
5) No One Else in the car (you will see why this matters in a minute)
6) A highway so packed with traffic that my GPS is reading a full half hour delay and we are at a literal standstill

Normally, if my husband were driving, this would all lead to one simple solution: I crawl into the back with the baby and soothe her until we get home. But if you refer back to #5 on our handy-dandy list above, you will see that is not an option. (Not at least til we can clone ourselves, at which point I say, Watch out world, because with more than one version of each mom out there gettin’ it done, the world is about to get freaking LIT UP.)

No sippy cup in sight, I did what any other desperate mother would do. I dumped out my to-go cup of iced coffee into another cup; wiped out the inside of said iced coffee cup with a Water Wipe; poured in some breastmilk that I had just pumped that thank God was sitting right there in my cup holder, threw this pony into Park and proceeded to try to feed my baby. Backwards. On a highway in standstill traffic.

I will let you guess how this all turned out.

Guess what 10-month-old’s don’t do? Drink breastmilk out of straws. (Pass it on.)

Colorful text messages were exchanged where I unfairly took out my anger on people close to me, and then I calmed the heck down. Thankfully, so did the baby.

So. This isn’t some inspirational post to say, YAY MOMS WE ROCK 24/7! (Because we don’t.)

Nope, this is a post to say to the other moms who feel stuck in traffic of any kind in their lives that hey, I see you. I’m frequently a not-so-efficient, scrambling, and sometimes kinda scary version of myself too.

But we’ll get there. That car in front of you moves again. The traffic clears. The baby stops crying. Life moves on.

And then we laugh a bit. (Or in my case, send apologetic texts to the victims of our verbal diarrhea.) And we find ourselves a little more heartened—and humored—by all the twists and turns of this messy ride that we call parenthood.

So cheers to all you parents who feel stuck today, or any day. I raise a glass to you. No matter what—or how—you’re drinking.

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