April 18 13

When the world seems upside-down, I grab the control where I can. I can say yes more.

Which is why I found my daughter with her “surprise we’re going to Yogurty’s!” face on.

Surprise! We're Going to Yogurty's!

I like saying yes. This week it sure feels good to say yes. This week it feels good to see children making faces like that—filled with pure I’m-about-to-get-my-sugar-on joy.

I know I’m supposed to be extra schmoopy about my kids right now. Everyone’s holding ‘em a little closer, hugging ‘em a little tighter, cherishing them a little extra. That’s what we do, right? We appreciate THE GOOD when bad things happen, because we are so goddamn lucky to have these three humans. We are so lucky that we weren’t in Boston on Monday, that we weren’t in West, Texas last night. We are so lucky. And I know how lucky I am.

And you best know how much I appreciate everything I have, and everything I could lose in a split second. Because I do. So. Much.

But guess what?

This morning happened.

I came home from the gym to find Isabella trying on every single article of clothing that has been packed away at the back of her closet. Clothes that were too small on the bigger sister, still too big for the little sister. Trying on every single last piece of still-too-large clothing. After I had told her not to. And then leaving it…all over the floor. After I had told her not to.

I saw the piles of clean laundry collecting dust in the hallway, not put away like I had asked.

I saw the lack of lunch boxes in the kitchen. I ask my kids for exactly one thing when they come home from school—to put their empty lunch boxes in the kitchen so I am not combing the house for them in the early hours of the a.m. when I’m way too tired to be packing three different lunches for three different picky palates.

I saw the dirty clothing that they had thrown down the basement steps; the clothing I had asked them to put in the hamper.

I saw the left-open box of cookies, the left-messy bathroom sink, the left-on lights in all the bedrooms, the left-unsigned homework, the left-everywhere half-finished glasses of water.

I saw the complete and total sloth and disregard for me and for what I do for them.

And then I lost my mind.

And I’m pretty sure I just went on strike.

I have no idea who is signing their homework this morning, but it’s not me.

I have no idea who is packing their lunches this morning, but it’s not me.

I have no idea who is doing the have-you-brushed-you-teeth breath check, but it’s not me.

I have no idea who is making sure water bottles are filled, hair is put into proper ponytails, indoor shoes are packed, outdoor shoes are on, breakfast has been eaten, but it’s not me.

I’m on strike. 

Until further notice.

If you’re looking for me, I’ll probably be working from Yogurty’s today.



  1. Solidarity!


    Comment by Audrey on April 18, 2013
  2. Come here. You’ll need a boat and waders. Bring cake.


    ali replied on



    Comment by Jen on April 18, 2013
  3. This sounds like my life. I might have to join you on strike.


    Comment by Meghan on April 18, 2013
  4. Hold on, indoor and outdoor shoes? They have to take two pairs of shoes to school? I would never survive outside of California.


    Comment by Megan @ Mama Bub on April 18, 2013
  5. I love your kids, but one thing I’m always amazed at is how dirty they can get a bathroom sink just by brushing their teeth or washing their hands.

    I went on strike too. Too bad it’s just me. And well, then I ran out of underwear and had to cross my picket line.


    ali replied on

    I think they are a product of having a nanny cleaning up after them for too long. ARGH.


    Kristabella replied on

    Also they are children. My mom used to have the same complaints with us.


    Comment by Kristabella on April 18, 2013
  6. I can’t stand it when I repeatedly ask my kids to clean up after themselves and they just ignore me. I’m up hours early to get their own things ready for their days, and I’m always searching the house for lunchboxes and homework to sign. I recently entered menopause and dealing with my kids is getting harder and harder as my own body cooperates with me less and less. I recently watched a great documentary called “Hot Flash Havoc” that really answered a lot of my own questions about what was going on. I only wish my kids would watch it with me so that they could stop being little… well you know. If anyone’s interested you can check it out here: http://bit.ly/11XQcWS


    Comment by Carol Bing on April 18, 2013
  7. Oh my WORD I am so with you.


    Comment by Jen Wilson on April 18, 2013
  8. I went on strike a couple of years ago, and then it was so great, I never went back to ‘work’. It may be messy anarchy around here, but Mama is happy.


    ali replied on

    …I’m now trying to figure out how long I can stay on strike…


    Comment by Mara on April 18, 2013
  9. Maybe this will turn into a new way of doing things. I’m curious to find out how it plays out. Stay strong, sister.


    Comment by Tamara on April 18, 2013
  10. Good article! We will be linking to this particularly great article on our website.
    Keep up the good writing.


    Comment by Misc on May 5, 2013
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