One of the most useful powers I’ve acquired is “Being Prepared” for life’s little emergencies…. Ok well it’s IMPOSSIBLE to truly be prepared for whatever occurs in the throes of child-wrangling… But I’ve learned to be a whole lot better prepared for things-that-could-and-very-well-may-happen. We learn to see potential in everything…. Potential opportunities for our kids, the potential greatness within our children waiting to be realized…. And potential disasters. On any given day, if you look in my purse (which is more of a Mary Poppins bag in a Vera Bradley Pattern disguise)you will find lollipops to reward/bribe/calm a kid down, band aids and antibiotic ointment (because someone WILL get a boo boo somehow if I don’t have them with me) hand sanitizer (for obvious reasons), a random Sippy cup, benedryl, tissues and the list goes on and on. In packing these things, I’m preparing for potential disasters, but also trying to ward them off by being ready. A Boy Scout would look like an ill-prepared, inexperienced slob next to most Moms…. And our preparedness is born out of disastrous experiences.
One of the biggest surprises about having a baby for me was the sheer amount of junk that you have to take with you each and every time you choose to leave the house. Back in my PK days (pre-kid) I used to snicker at parents of babies with huge bags of gear, thinking that they must be crazy and going overboard with their preparations… And I was wrong. I learned very quickly that one spare outfit was not enough for a trip to the mall with a refluxing baby, and that I better have two bottles ready for him as well…. Not that I was necessarily planning on being gone through two feeding times…. But if you ever get caught WITHOUT a bottle and a have a starving baby on your hands, it’s definitely traumatic enough to make a parent over-prepare for the rest of their natural lives. Enough diapers and wipes to handle ten diaper changes (diaper blowouts are catastrophic) and five extra pacifiers (if you kid likes them) are essential. Pack… PACK FOR YOUR LIVES!
Even though my husband now understands why I have to actually pack a bag to take these people we call our kids anywhere, he still doesn’t understand why I have so much junk in my car…. Or what he thinks is junk. He may see paper drive-thru napkins, but I see spill absorbers or emergency diaper change wipes…. While to him it looks like there are extra coats and shoes in my car, I know that at some point SOMEONE in my Herd will be complaining of being cold or have managed to get in the car wearing no shoes. It may sound like a back-asswards way of being prepared, but having my car as part of my “kit” has been invaluable.
Like I’ve said before, Moms are like Bomb Squad Techs… We diffuse hostile situations, and much easier when we have all of our gear with us to do our best work…. We are keepers of the peace. Moms learn to prepare in hopes that they will have semi-control over potential disasters, rather than being left at the mercy of whatever they can scrounge up when things get ugly. That being said, Moms tend to be excellent improvisers when they need to be… We are the MacGyvers of the parenting world. One particular incident comes to mind in my personal Hall of Shame parenting incidences… The Worst Dirty Diaper Explosion EVER . MomGyver skills definitely came in handy that day, as I utilized every spare piece of fabric in the car to clean up the mess and cover the filthy car seat…. Receiving blankets, random kids clothing, towels, plastic Target bags… I made use of them all. I was like the Martha Stewart of a Hellacious Waste Accident. Don’t make fun of a mom’s messy car… She’s just driving a well prepared SuperMom vehicle.
What’s the Craziest thing you’ve ever found in your purse or diaper bag? Tweet it to me!
Stay tuned for the next MomPower Episode next week!