I was running very late this morning trying to get my almost 10 year old, 13 year old and 15 year old to their summer haircut appointment. (I give their ages to confirm I have been doing this parenting thing for a while now – my point to come) Before I knew it we had to leave the house and everyone had to use the same bathroom at the same time. We do have another bathroom. Any parent knows this is how it goes – it is not at all logical to split up and take the organized, swift approach of sharing all usable space; be on top of each other at all times and make sure to elbow your sibling hard in the ribs while brushing your teeth and scream to your mother “MOM! I’m trying to use the bathroom!” (Or other phrases not particularly appropriate for a doula blog)
We were halfway to the salon and I realized no one took our poor, old dog out. I also realized I had to go to the bathroom and I had not yet brushed my teeth. Sorry dad. Gross. I was highly cognizant of the fact that I wanted to be going 45 in a 25 so I made absolute sure I went the speed limit; we were late anyway. I diligently and slowly made my way through the narrow East side streets and was held up just a bit by this scene; the catalyst for this piece. A very VERY fit mom was pulling two young children in a bike trailer. Her right arm had a taut, strong hold on a leash attached to what looked like an inexhaustible puppy. Her left hand was curved up into her ear holding a cell phone and as I slowly passed, giving her a generous gap of safe space, I saw she was deep in cellular conversation. She was also glistening with summer sweat in an attractive Athleta, Title Nine, LuLu Lemon outfit of some kind – the whole thing, amazing. I am not quite sure how to define this use of amazing yet; I need some time to process.
I dropped my kids off at the salon, made a sweaty (not the athletic kind) plea to the stylist goddess Jece Marshall https://www.facebook.com/justjece/ for permission to zoom back home and take our dog out. On my way home I passed the biker mom again; still deeply engrossed in conversation, and puppy looking as if he or she could keep going for another day or two! I could not see the kids, but I will make an unfair and potentially inaccurate assumption that they too were happily content in their carriage of close quartered chaos.
As I ponder a good way to wrap up my morning tale, I will start by saying that most of us could not and probably would not want to pull off biker, Athleta, dog runner, child entertainer Palooza extravaganza mom! I for one would be a puddle of road pizza if I tried that maneuver. Whether we are new to parenthood or seasoned like I think I am and humbly reminded from time to time that I need a review – we try too hard to do it all. I think we should change the word multitask to mean multiple people tasking together and not just one person trying to dot all the “I’s” and cross the T’s” alone without a full functioning sharpened pencil. If you invite me over I will happily help you sharpen your pencils and we can multitask together; that way, if the metaphorical dog has to poop or sees a squirrel our bike will not get pulled over sideways!