de(tales): purple glitter
I met Abby originally online, through Twitter and an online writer community that we were both a part of at the time. She is spunky and driven and always has lots to say. When I met her in person, at the Festival of Faith and Writing, I realized that this is true of her on and offline. I hope you enjoy this glittery de(tale) of hers, today. ...
My girls are two and three, and cannot get enough of girly things. Their grandparents got them two baskets full of dress up clothes this Christmas, and it has been a rotating fashion show every day since. Pink bunny masks, pointy princess hats, beloved white heels that clop-clop-clop through our wooden hallway.
But nothing compares to the pretty skirts that the girls can scoot up their legs by themselves. For about a month after they opened them, my girls wore those dress up skirts every day. We had to draw the line at wearing them outside the house. Not because I am terribly concerned about the impression we will give the neighbors (our neighbors love the crazy flare of our daughters ). Rather, the rule of no “fancy skirts” outside the house came because I did not want to inflict the trail of glitter these skirts leave on anyone else.
One of the skirts was covered in purple glitter, neon purple glitter. Within 24 hours my house was also covered in neon purple glitter. It was everywhere. On the couches, the carpet, all over our wood floors there was glitter. The girls room looked like a purple fairy had exploded. Their bed was covered in the stuff.
At first, it was cute, the glitter everywhere. The girls were so enchanted with their fancy skirts they even slept in them. It was an instagram-able bedtime if there ever was one. How precious. Being a mom who is delighted, or at least amused by constant glitter is the kind of mom I like to be.
Slowly, the glitter started wearing on me. It stuck to my black work pants when I sat down on the couch for just a second before work. I could feel it stick to my bare feet when I walked along the hallway and into the girls room. I tried to vacuum the one small square of carpet we own; the glitter was impossible to get out. Without even realizing it, that glitter I had once been completely enchanted by, became a constant source of torture.
The glitter my girls left around the house gave way to all my mothering insecurities. Surely, a better mom would vacuum more often. Surely, a better mom would clean the couches on a regular basis. Surely this purple glitter all over the house spoke to when and how I was failing my girls. I gave into them too much. I don’t say no enough.
And then I stopped noticing the glitter all together. I was surprised when my co-worker asked me what was with the streak of glitter across my cheek. I shrugged, glitter in random places is just what happens when you are raising two tiny girls.
Parenting, for me, has been a lot like my battle with the glitter. My kids get to a new phase and I am thrilled, then all too quickly I am ready to move on. I blame myself for normal toddler troubles, potty accidents or tantrums. Then I don’t even notice the things I used to delight in.
A few months after Christmas the girls found something else to be enamored with. The fancy skirts are trotted out only occasionally. I find myself missing the purple glitter all over the house.
I am tucking that longing away in my heart, and learning to embrace the stages my kids are in. Purple glitter is a small price to pay for two little girls, completely ecstatic to be wearing their fancy skirts to bed.
Abby lives and loves in the city of Atlanta. She swears a lot more than you would think for a public school teacher and mother of two under three. She can’t help that she loves all words. She believes in champagne for celebrating everyday life, laughing until her stomach hurts and telling the truth, even when it is hard, maybe especially then. You can find her blogging at accidentaldevotional and tweeting at @accidentaldevo. Abby loves all kinds of Girl Scout cookies and literally burning lies in her backyard fire pit.