One day my mom called while I was giving Zachary a bath in the kitchen sink. He was a baby so don't be alarmed that I am washing my nine year old son in the kitchen sink. I heard Byron answer the phone and then say "she is washing a baby." I started laughing hysterically. It might not have been as funny as I thought it was, but I was crazy laughing anyway. I had never heard anyone refer to giving a baby a bath as "washing the baby." It is accurate, just not something I had ever heard. Since that day, I have said it myself many times and with a smile. Washing the children is something mom's do. And sometimes mom's forget to buy more soap.
As I was headed to the shower this morning, I noticed there were only slivers of soap in my shower, so I opened the drawer where I keep soap. No soap. I headed in to Cooper's bathroom and opened the drawer where I keep soap. No soap. I looked in his tub. No soap. I headed downstairs to look in Zachary and Samantha's drawer. No soap. I looked in their tub. No soap. As I stood in the third bathroom and realized there is no bath soap in my house, I had a thought -- WHO IS WASHING THE CHILDREN? Obviously, they are not washing themselves. How long have they been taking baths and showers without soap? Why have I not noticed this? I send them to shower nightly (ok....almost nightly...give me a break!)and they almost always come out of the bathroom wet. Have I been so pre-occupied with just getting through another day that I have not noticed that nobody is washing my children? Parent fail? I would guess that most people would consider this an EPIC FAIL. I have mixed feelings about it. On the one hand, all of my children are old enough to understand that they should be using soap in the shower. Nobody told me they needed soap. In the great big scheme of life, does it really matter? They all have shampoo. I can probably assume that the suds from that soap have slid over their little bodies and cleaned something, right? Am I failing as a parent if I don't check their bathrooms nightly to be sure there is soap and that it has been used?
What if tomorrow I read an open letter posted on some perfect parent's blog to "the mom who does not wash her children.....?" What if that letter is an open attack on my integrity as a parent and makes a ridiculous connection between there being no bath soap to there being no "raising of the children?" That might cause me some grief. I might decide that I am definitely not taking my role as a parent very seriously if I allow us to run out of soap. I could decide that I am such a loser of a parent that I need to re-evaluate how I do it and make some major changes. Afterall, if I am not living up to others expectations for how it should be done, I am just not worthy. OR, I might not. Instead, I will probably be miffed that some self-righteous person has used a public forum to bash parents for not doing the most perfect thing in every situation of their children's lives. I will be more offended that a woman has decided that the best way to use her time is to publicly announce how piss poor of a job I am doing as a mom if I can be so detached from my children that I do not know if they have been washed. I will probably roll my eyes, give a big heavy sigh, slightly wave my middle finger, and laugh. We ran out of soap. So what! I'll go buy more soap. Running out of soap is just running out of soap. It happens. Life goes on.