Just Change Your Own Diaper!

I can't wait until my kids are old enough to, like, get themselves ready and make their own breakfast and stuff. Right now, I have no choice but to jump right out of bed in the morning. Not only are the boys not old enough to (sufficiently, without a fiasco) take care of their own basic needs, they can't even really be trusted to hang around the house while I lounge around half-asleep for a few extra minutes. Because when that happens, there are almost always incidents with toilet paper or permanent markers or forks or pretzels. Or all of the above.

This has been especially difficult lately because I've had some issues with morning sickness. Nothing too severe, but enough to make me feel like not getting up the second my eyes pop open. As a result, I've been feeling insanely jealous of people whose kids are of an age where they can wake up and fend for themselves. You know, at least fix their own cereal and whatnot.

Yes, I realize that Colin is six years old, and that he could probably - if I'd let him - pour his own cereal. The problem is, I know that would involve climbing on the counters and scaling the front of the fridge to get a gallon of milk that will inevitably be too heavy for his scrawny little bird-arms to manage and it would result in a milky mess all over my floor and at almost $4 a gallon, milk is too expensive to risk wasting like that, y'all. Plus then that would mean that not only would I have to get up, but I'd have to get up and mop. And make the cereal anyway. And even if Colin could successfully manage to get himself some cereal, there's the issue of his two little brothers who, at three and two, are NOT nearly old enough to obtain their own breakfast. But they would think that since big brother did it, they surely should be allowed to do it too. Which would equal an automatic disaster.

It's not even just that, though. Do you ever fantasize that your kids are old enough to, like, be left at home while you just run somewhere real quick? The other night we ran into Curtis's boss and his wife without their kids and they were all, "We just snuck out for a while and left the kids at home, tee hee" and I was secretly harboring some INSANE jealousy because their children are old enough for that to be an option. I don't remember the last time I just went somewhere with Curtis, by ourselves, without having to pin down some childcare first. And usually? It's expensive.

Also? It would be so nice to, say, run to the store without having to ensure that three (soon-to-be four!) children are properly dressed and acceptably clean, with shoes, and herding them into the car and buckling them into carseats and booster seats and listening to Veggie Tales CDs (thanks a bucket, Chick-Fil-A) all the way to the store and then getting them out and piling them into a cart while threatening them within an inch of their lives if they misbehave and managing them all throughout the store and fielding "I wants" and "can I haves" left and right and then doing it all over again - only with groceries - on the way home.  

Of course, all this is a moot point ... a pipe dream ... a fantasy that will not see the light of reality for, oh, another eight or ten years at a minimum. (Well, the "leaving them home" part, anyway). At least I have the ray of hope that within the next three or four years, I won't have to wipe anybody's butt any more.

I know everyone says I'll miss it when they actually are old enough to be independent (perhaps not the butt-wiping, but their little-kidhood in general). But man, it sure does sound awesome from here ...


  1. Aw, soon enough! When Colin is 12, he will be able to stay home on his own, and perhaps even watch the other three while you run out quick to the store! You could always just set the table for breakfast the night before with three juice boxes and a poptart each, ha ha. My two are old enough to get their own breakfast, but I still have to hound them to do it on weekdays! On weekends I could care less if they starve, LOL! But I should at least have the appearance of being a good mom during the school week!

  2. Jessica Armstrong LasaNovember 15, 2011 at 10:44 AM

    Yah, my kids are almost 8 and 9 and they won't even make their own cereal. They do, however, want to stay home when I go to the store so they can play video games. Yep, let the jealousy begin. It is only for about 20min. but having one kid instead of three....AWESOME! Probably not legal age to be leaving my kids home alone so don't be turning me in people, it's just a block away!

  3. Pour bowls of cereal before you go to bed and leave them out for them to eat. Can one of them reach cups of milk out of the fridge? Pour them and leave them there for the tallest one to get out. Get you some sleep!

  4. these are not the kinds of thoughts you should be having when you are pregnant and about to start all over at square one. And I should know!

  5. Hmmmmm, you fantasize about your kids being self-sufficient the way I fantasize about being out of the Navy (or my roof re-shingling itself for free, or chocolate having negative calories like celery.) :P

    But I think everyone feels like you in the sense that we all want something that we know we can't have right now in life, and it just seems impossible to wait that long without losing your ever-loving mind!! Don't lose heart, it will happen someday! (Unlike my chocolate theory.)

  6. Whoever said you'll miss this when the kids are old enough to be independent is LYING. My oldest is old enough to be home alone and my youngest started school full time and it is a.w.e.s.o.m.e. It's your reward for surviving and you'll get there too!

  7. My kids are 2, 1 and another entering the world in t-minus 19 days. Is it bad that I'm already fantasizing about them going off to college? My 2-year-old just learned how to take off her own jacket today. I feel like we're almost there.

  8. Heres what you do: Buy a half gallon milk container. Leave the dishwasher door open when you go to bed at night with a bowl, spoon and box of cereal on the door. When he gets up, he can pour everything by himself, and if you have a little chair, he can sit there too. If he spills a little, it'll be on the door and you just have to close the door to clean it up.

  9. Yup, can't wait. I do get to "sleep in" somewhat with my youngest when the older one will get up and quietly watch TV. But the "run to the corner to get milk"... I will like that day. But yes. Double edged sword, because then they won't be babies anymore.


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