Curled up in the fetal position with my head and knees on the floor, snots and tears cover my face and my world seems dirty and desperate. Two little terrors in tutus come over and pull my shirt up enough to see my ink: goodness and virtue was tattooed on my skin in urgency during my 19th year of life to remind myself who I am just in case I forget someday. The little people start to whack away and to then rub my skin, saying, “Back! Back!”
I think of the hamster food, spread over the entire carpet. Stupid hamsters. What fool leaves hamsters at a church just so they will be rescued? If I decide I don’t have enough goodness and virtue left, I may dash the children’s hearts and desert the little rodents at the proper place: the SPCA.
I feel a mouth on my back. She drools on my skin and then rubs it around with her chubby hand. I’m too tired to care. I think about the highchairs. How could I have forgotten to collapse them? I know what happens—they get used as ladders to the mother load of chalk. What could be more fun to two toddlers than to cover every surface with pretty colors when mommy’s not looking? She bends and blows wet raspberries on my back and giggles. I peek out of my tears and see the reflection of the other one who is twirling in her tutu.
Is this the moment I inked my skin for? You are good. Your life has worth. You are loved. You love. The dirty floors and windows will be clean someday. (Even if it is when they are all grown and gone and I am so sad and lonely because the house is so quiet and clean all the time.) Everyone is always telling me to cherish these times because they are the easy times of motherhood, and the real challenges are yet to come. The bitter thoughts creep in. No. I will not think of that right now. I will pull myself together and take a deep breath. The sun is shining and the leaves have turned into something splendid. I will not think of all the millions of things that need doing that are not getting done. I will focus on the task at hand: remember who you are. You are a girl. You love the fall. You will show affection to your tutu clad babies and feed them lunch. You will open the dirty window and pray for peace as the fresh air comes in and cleanses your lungs.
476 Veiled in the Minor Key
45 minutes ago