Every January I make deals with myself: I will work out every day. I will stay in touch with relatives. I will work on genealogy. I will lose weight. I won't eat all the leftover Christmas candy by myself.
But inevitably — by about the middle of February — that list of resolutions is stuffed in a drawer somewhere, the Christmas candy is gone and the gym pass is lost.
Oh well, there's always next year.
So this year, I've decided to be more realistic. I'm making a list of all the New Year's resolutions I'd love to make and keep as a mother, but know I never will.
That way, when that mid-February let-down sets in, I can look at my list and say, "Whew, good thing I didn't actually commit to these!"
So here are my 2009 Wish-I-Could-But-Come-On-I'm-Human Resolutions:
1. To be showered and dressed every single day by 10 a.m. Well, except if the baby is sick. Or I'm sick. Or it's snowing. Or I stayed up late the night before. Or it's a Friday. OK, let's say by 3 p.m. and the shower is optional.
2. To not toss my daughter, Nicole, like a hot potato to my husband when he walks through the door. This is something I promised my pregnant self I would never do because I know my husband works hard and he shouldn't have to come home and take over mommy duty. Well, it's 21 months later and if my husband isn't home within five minutes of his estimated time of arrival, you can bet I'm calling him in a panic.
I thought I'd be different, but there's something about talking baby talk, listening to "Wheels on the Bus" for the 100th time, wiping baby slime off the VCR and saying "No, no, don't eye-gouge mommy" all day that makes me forget that my husband works, too. So sorry honey, you're up.
3. To always be calm and patient. Ha Ha Ha.
4. To not compare my child to other children. Oh, I acted like I didn't care when the 10-month old in my neighborhood started walking before Nicole did. I was devastated. I can never admit this to the other moms, of course, and my party line still is, "Oh, babies all develop at different times. It really means nothing."
Then I go home and put my daughter through training drills.
5. To not be enormously jealous when Nicole picks daddy over me.
Sure, I change her, feed her, bathe her, research her rashes, gave up a career, have stretch marks and devote my life to her. But daddy comes home, holds her upside down and lets her draw on herself with markers. I don't even have a chance.
So bring it on February. I'm resolving that these goals will not be met.
I'll still be in my pajamas when my husband gets home from work, at which point I'll heave Nicole at him and snidely remark, "She likes you best anyway." Then I'll pull out my hidden candy canes and figure out how to get Nicole caught up with the kid next door who can already recognize letters.
And I won't feel bad at all.
Erin Stewart's blog, Just4Mom, can be found Tuesdays and Thursdays at deseretnews.com.