Have you ever run to the grocery store in your flannel pants and sweatshirt without taking a shower, doing your hair, or putting on any makeup? Well that is pretty much a normal Sunday morning for me, and it never fails that I run into a neighbor, my daughter’s school librarian, or someone from work. Lately, I’ve been feeling like I’m that “sloppy” mother who is never put together, whose children always look unkept and slightly dirty. I was reminded of a post that our very own blogger TheAmazingRaces published back in January. It was about a Mom who always looks perfectly put together, and it got me thinking…

Every Saturday morning my youngest daughter has gymnastics at the Y at 9am and my oldest daughter has basketball at 10am. My husband and I cross paths in the parking lot right around 9:50 each Saturday morning. This past Saturday I took my oldest daughter to basketball. Since I have been feeling so sloppy lately, I showered, put on real clothes, and swept some bronzer and my new Nars orgasm blush on my face (this product is awesome!). I even threw on my glitter Ugg boots to add a little sass to my Saturday morning! We left with enough time for me to stop at Dunkin Donuts to grab a coffee. I was having a great morning!

We found a good parking spot in the lot, which on Saturday mornings can be an ordeal onto itself. As we were walking into the gym I recognized a mother from gymnastics. She was wearing an old, wrinkly sweatsuit with a Nike hat, she looked tired and even slightly hungover–we’ve all be there, so immediately my heart went out to her. There is nothing worse than a 9am tiny tumblers class to counter a wonderful night out with friends, where delicious food and spirits were consumed in abundance.

I took my seat in the bleachers as practice got started. Within ten minutes a little boy, whose father was sitting right next to me, had a major meltdown in the middle of the floor. He wouldn’t run, wouldn’t follow the coach’s directions, walked over to the bleachers and told his Dad he was tired and ready to leave. The Dad tried encouraging him to get back out there. The little boy made one, half-hearted attempt, and that was it, full meltdown, tears, the whole nine yards. The Dad was mortified, packed-up, and they were gone within the first 15 minutes of practice.

Around the thirty minute mark I witnessed a second meltdown. The women to my right and a few rows back had brought her two year old daughter to watch practice. If you have any experience with two year olds you understand immediately the problem with this situation. Two year olds don’t sit and watch much of anything. This little lady was running all over the gym, throwing balls out onto the floor, and stressing out her mother. The mother was running around so much that I could actually see the pit stains in her Penn State, class of 98’ T-shirt.  After warning her daughter not to run toward the bleachers, for the one hundredth time, the little girl slipped and slid underneath the first row, bonking her head. The mother actually yelled out, “That’s it!”, and within minutes they were packed up and gone.

The last ten minutes of practice are spent with two teams of three and four year olds scrimmaging against one another. You can only imagine how crazy it is when ten preschoolers attempt to play an organized game of basketball; it’s chaotic! After about one minute of game time a player on the blue team screamed “no one is passing me the ball! AAAAGGGHHHH no one is passing to me!” The player from the blue team proceeded to run screaming and crying to the bleachers, “Daddy! No one is passing me the ball, no one is my friend!” The Dad, who happened to be grading papers in the bleachers, missed the entire episode and appeared to have no clue what his son was talking about, this only made his son even more hysterical. Needless to say, the half graded papers got tossed to the side, and practice didn’t end well for this particular family.

As I watched the meltdowns going on all around me it hit me, we are all in the same boat!

At any moment I could be the disheveled, over-tired Mom dragging herself out of bed to tiny tumblers. My children could be melting down, bonking their head on the bleachers, or screaming at their teammates on the court. So, the next time you see a parent who looks perfect, who looks put together and who has perfectly neat and clean children, just wait…if you observe them long enough they are just like us, except maybe with nicer shoes.

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