Thursday, February 25, 2010

You're Excused

Gone are the days of “my dog ate my homework” and other lame excuses. As a mother with young children, I find that my excuses in everyday situations are thoroughly believable because they are way too far-fetched to have been made up:

“I’m sorry we can’t return the Transformer toy that you let us borrow yesterday. Spiderman apparently trapped him in a web (the chain that opens and closes our radiator vent) and there’s no way to untangle him. As soon as we can get our hands on a pair of wire cutters, we’ll return Optimus Prime.”

“I’m sorry I don’t have dressing to go with the salad I brought. I forgot that my kids had reappropriated this cruet as a jar for collecting nature specimens. I brought it, thinking it contained homemade Italian dressing, but now I see that it’s filled with pond water, gravel and drowned ants.”

“I’m sorry I didn’t answer or return your phone calls yesterday. My toddler changed the ringer to “silent”, set the phone’s alarm clock, and then hid the phone (after downloading $19 worth of new ringtones). We finally found it in the oven at 3:28am when the alarm went off.”

“I’m sorry I was in the bathroom for the first 10 minutes after your family arrived for dinner (after you drove two hours to get here). I dashed in to comb my hair as you knocked, but the comb got stuck in some syrup that I guess my daughter massaged in my head at breakfast. It took me a while to find the eyebrow scissors in the bathroom and cut the comb out of my hair.”

“I’m sorry we’re late. I allotted 45 minutes to get three children dressed and out the door, but (fill in the blank with endless possibilities; here are a couple):

(a) Everyone was dressed, jacketed, and ready to go on time, and I was helping my three year old learn to zip his own jacket. In the blink of an eye, my toddler disappeared into the bathroom, took her hairbow out, and flushed it down the toilet. Cleaning up the overflow set us back a few.

(b) It wasn’t the digging the car out of twenty-something inches of snow that delayed us. Actually, my four year old daughter stepped into a mound of loose ice and cracked her Cinderella dress-up heels into several pieces. She made a valiant attempt to offer up the cold and the humiliating wardrobe malfunction for the needs of poor children, but a mile down the road her sweet sobs from the backseat compelled me to turn the car around and go home for her backup pair of Sleeping Beauty heels and dry socks.”


Mary Alice said...

Okay, but I am I the only one who feels (admittedly absurd) pressure to pretend that I have everything under control at all times, not out of pride (I don't think) but in theory for apostolic reasons?

Today I was listening to this song Shine, one of my old favorites, but it occurred to me that this puts a lot of pressure on keeping up appearances, or no one will wish for what I've got?

Obviously, anyone who knows me well knows that I have very little shot of getting anywhere on time and with the things I was supposed to bring (birthday gifts, directions?).

Young Mom said...

O my goodness, I laughed so hard about the salad dressing and the cell phone I cried!

fumblingtowardgrace said...

This is hilarious, and makes me both excited about having children, and want to throw up a little bit. Thanks for keeping it real! :)

Right Said Red said...

you always keep it real JM! Thanks for the laughs ;-)

B-Mama said...

Love this on a Friday morning! I think the cell phone is my favorite!!!! lol. JM, you're a crack up. Thank goodness we have these wonderful children to add joy and interest to our lives. Otherwise, I fear my existence would be way too mundane!

Leslie said...

too funny! totally relate!!! :)

Catherine said...


I don't think it's pride that makes us want to look on top of things, but shame (I'm not good enough unless I have it all together).

Pressure is the last thing we moms need more of!

Loved the post, JM!

Catherine said...

I meant to begin my comment by saying, no you're not the only one, Mary Alice. I struggle with that too!

The Book Girl said...

This was hilarious- definitely made me laugh! As embarrassing as these things are in the moment, don't they make for a great story later? Great post!