The Sticky Files - Marisca Bakker

Parenting is a rollercoaster of a trip

Marisca ruminates on the hazy, not-lazy, crazy days of summer

Do you ever have one of those weeks that are crazy busy and you keep telling yourself you just need to get through it and next week will be calmer? I’ve been having one of those weeks every week since school let out last month.

The other day, my middle daughter who is five had to go to the doctor and I knew it would be a somewhat quick appointment so I thought it would be a good idea to take my two- and eight-year-olds. (Spoiler alert: it wasn’t.)

But before we went into the examination room, we made a quick trip to the bathroom. Behind the toilet was a box of individually wrapped sanitizing wipes and condoms. My two-year-old instantly grabbed a condom, I’m assuming because it was in a shiny red wrapper. I knew she couldn’t open it and I was trying to keep her happy, so I let her hold on to it.

My five-year-old is obsessed with washing her hands so she took a couple of the individually wrapped wipes. The doctor’s appointment itself was a bit chaotic because my toddler was overdue for a nap, we were all super hot and I’m pretty sure those rooms have gotten smaller since the last time I was there. However, we survived.

Fast forward to the next day, it is still sweltering hot, which I’m pretty sure has melted my brain. I took my children to the grocery store, and I was trying to be quick but as soon as we got in there, my five-year-old says she needs to wash her hands and that she took in a wipe from yesterday’s doctor’s visit.

It’s crazy busy in the store’s lobby and as I’m struggling to disconnect a cart with a monkey for a toddler on my hip, I turn to look at her and she’s holding the condom in her hand, trying to open it. Before I could get to her, she managed to rip it open and the condom inside went flying out and onto the ground. She screamed and yelled, “what is that?”

Of course, everyone is now looking and probably wondering what my five-year-old is doing with a condom. I tried to quickly scoop it up and throw it in my purse, but the damage was done. She kept asking what that was and my face was probably beet red. I told her it was just a wipe that had gone bad. Maybe I’m not very good at thinking on my feet, but she bought it.

I’m sure I’m not the only parent who has had an embarrassing moment, although sometimes I feel like it. Life is crazy with kids and I’m learning I’ve just got to roll with it.

Two days later, my middle child celebrated her birthday and on the eve of her birthday, I cuddled with her before she fell asleep. As she was wrapped up in my arms, I noticed her chubby cheeks were slowly disappearing and her legs extended so far down the bed.

As her breath slowed and she sank into her slumber, I noticed tears were streaming down my face. It felt like yesterday she was learning to take her first steps and stumbling over big words. Now she is getting ready for full-time school in the fall, and she is so mature and kind and I’m wondering where the time went.

If these last five years flew by, will the next five? Am I soaking it all in enough? Parenting is a rollercoaster of emotions but it is a ride I am so grateful to be on.

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