My Friend, “Um, hi…what are you doing here?”
Me, “We’re here for our playdate!”
My Friend, “Yeah, that’s on Wednesday…”
I wish I could say that this type of exchange is totally out of character for me, but the truth is I’m kind of a hot mess. Don’t get me wrong, I manage to get a lot done. I work part time, run a non-profit organization, (www.mommiesinneed.org) go to endless doctor’s appointments to manage my chronic health problems, and take care of my twin four-year-old girls. And some people might see me on a day when I have showered and put on work clothes and mistakenly think I’ve got this motherhood thing down. I want to take a minute to publicly admit that I fall solidly in the category of the “Hot Mess Mom.”
We Hot Mess Moms have too many children and too little time. We are at least 5 minutes late to EVERYTHING and are almost always rushing the kids into school still eating their very not-homemade granola bar for breakfast. Our kids are often in mismatched clothes, pj’s, and/or a tutu (because that is a battle we just did not have the will to fight) and their lunches are almost never Pinterest-worthy bento boxes.
We admire the moms who show up at school with workout clothes on because they actually intend to workout. Hot Mess moms, on the other hand, are wearing yoga pants even though we have not done yoga since pre-natal classes when we were pregnant with our first! Sure we might have thrown on some makeup and a dress (especially if we have to rush off to work), but if you look a little closer, we often have mysterious stains on our clothes and dry-shampooed hair. And just maybe when we take off our bras at the end of the day a Shokpins falls out.
A Hot Mess mom never knows when anything is happening. Our kids wind up with their very best old Sophia shirt on for picture day and junk dug out of the bottom of our purses for show and tell (it’s a very exciting pen! And next we have a Monster Yogurt loyalty card!!)
Once, I actually had to post a picture of my planner on Facebook (yes I still use a paper one even though I lose it at least twice a year) with a mysterious entry of “Playdate 11 am.” I looked at it for what felt like forever and legitimately could not remember who I was supposed to meet at 11 am that Friday or where I was supposed to go. I put it up as my status update and one of my board members immediately writes back and says it is our all-family playdate that I have been planning for months. The one for which I had rented a park and gotten a photographer to donate her time… right, that playdate!
If you have seen a mom openly weeping at school, she might be a hot mess. That was me yesterday, because I didn’t have time to get it together after my mini-breakdown before picking up the kids and I was not about to pay the $5/minute late fee. We are the moms who often don’t have the cleanest houses, or the most organized gatherings. I once forgot I was hosting a book club and when people showed up I was already in my pj’s and wound up serving them fruit snacks and goldfish- but at least I had wine! A hot mess mom usually has wine.
But in defense of the hot mess mom- we tend not to judge. Are your kids being jerks and you want to say that without having to be scolded that you should be cherishing every moment? Is your husband on his death bed because of a man cold while you have been pushing through that exact same cold for the past three days? Find a hot mess mom and she will probably be happy to commiserate with you. Sure, the conversation may be punctuated with “Don’t Touch that” and “I’m serious this time” and “For the love of Adele, will you please stop licking the cat,” but in between interruptions you may find a listening ear, an understanding friend, and someone who will always be there for you…as long as you remind her where exactly she’s supposed to be.
Are you a hot mess sometimes? Leave a comment to share your stories so we can all get a laugh and know that we aren’t alone!