I am a horrible mother, not for what I do, but for what I think. I think I want to run away.
As I wash the dishes for the umpteenth time today, I fume. Why is it my responsibility to do all these menial household tasks on a daily basis? What? Because I am the mom, because I have always done it, because I have a vagina?
My husband is lying on the couch watching some competitive sports game, god knows what. Fact is he would watch booger picking if they put it in a sports arena and televised it. As I finish the dishes and start to prepare to make breakfast, I grit my teeth and pull out the pan.
I curse the very existence of meal preparation and Martha Stewart. I blame her for the need to create not only healthy food, but food cut into the shape of hearts. Heart-shaped pancakes? Who the hell thought of this and why do I have to create fun food? I didn’t have fun food growing up. It was a good day when I had a sandwich in my brown paper bag for lunch.
I can hear my children laughing in the next room. They are watching some inane cartoon and not the good ones I was raised on. Oh, no. We can’t watch Big Bird or Cookie Monster and learn something. We have to watch a cartoon with sarcastic undertones with moronic characters. The no good children which I have sacrificed so much; my youth, my good looks, my career, don’t even care.
I start to plan my escape in my head. I will pack a bag, very nonchalantly. No one will notice, I know that. They don’t notice anything I do unless it involves skipping a meal or not fetching some item they can’t find. I will put in my bag, a change of clothing, some shorts, my bathing suit, a pair of flip-flops and my makeup. I will need pink lipstick where I am going. First stop, the bank. I will clear out the bank account. Second stop, the grocery store where I will stock up on Pellegrini water and wine, lots of wine. Third stop, paradise and no looking back.
But where will I go? I will go South. I will just drive South until I hit somewhere warm, on the water, with a tiki hut bar. I will saunter up to the bar, in my bathing suit with my hair in a messy bun. I will order a daiquiri and not care that it is only 1:00 in the afternoon. I will say my name is Diamonique or Milagros or something exotic. I can use a fake accent. I will sit and sip my daiquiri without a care in the world, far away from the dishes and the laundry and the family who does not care about me.
They probably wouldn’t even notice I was gone until dinner time. I feel that I could be switched out for any other woman who would tolerate being a servant and scrub the toilet. I feel overwhelmed with the work that is expected of me. I feel taken advantage of by the people who are supposed to care about me. I feel invisible.
“Mom!” I hear being shouted from the other room. “Now what do the insolent little shits want,” I think as I walk with heavy feet to the t.v. room and there they all sit, still in their pajamas, expecting me to wait on them hand and foot, like an unpaid servant.
“We made you some pictures,” they say as they hand me papers with hand-drawn pictures. I take the white pages with colorful crayon drawings and look. My beautiful babies, my sweet gorgeous perfect babies drew pictures of me. I look so sweet and happy in all the child drawn renditions of their mother. One, in particular, makes me smile. I am in front of a rudimentary house and I am wearing a pink dress with a huge smile.
“Why am I smiling in this one?” I ask.
“Because you are our mommy,” the little one answers in her sweet little 3-year-old voice. I tear up a little as she gives me a big unexpected hug with her sweet little curls falling in her angelic face. “I love you,” she says and plants a big mushy kiss on my check.
Damn, they are good. They are really good. I decide to stick around a little longer as I hang the picture of me wearing the pink dress and big smile on the refrigerator.
“Mom! Are the pancakes almost done?” yells the 6-year-old.
“Should I pack the red bathing suit or the black one?” I wonder out loud as I return to my heart shaped pancakes.
Melanie Gangolf is a quirky work at home mom of three teenagers. She is a full-time mom, part-time writer and all-time woman. You can find here at https://www.facebook.com/melanie.mullengangolf.