The Hot Man was sad today. Bella had ‘Fairytale Day’ at school and her class was having a shared lunch. She had to dress up in her funnest fairytale clothes and take a plate of yummy treats to share with the class.
The Hot Man is new to this kind of thing. It’s 8am and Bella wants to know, “What am I gonna take for shared lunch Dad?” Panic mode from the relatively new to the job, SuperDad.
So I step in briskly. “No problem. Get a six dollar sponge cake from the bakery on the way to school.”
The man is relieved and off they go to school. He comes back decidedly less happy. “I felt like a loser. All the other kids had really nice plates of food. Homemade cupcakes, platters of sandwiches, pies, cakes. All these mums with their fancy dishes like this.”
“And there I was with my pitiful cake from the bakery in a ugly box. Like this.”
I comforted him with nuggets of wisdom from my many years as a
wannabe SuperMum. “It’s all about the presentation. I bet you some of those parents bought those fabulous treats from a shop and then beautified them on a plate so they would LOOK homemade. So they could outshine all you loser parents.”
He was unappeased. “Now I know why you would go all out baking things for Big Son and Big Daughter when they were little and they had to take food to school. I thought you were over the top with it but now I get it.” I am happy the Hot Man has seen the light. But then he adds, “You don’t bake anything for the younger three kids schools though. Ever. What happened?”
I got older. And wiser. Food is food. Kids don’t care what it looks like. I give Little Son a two dollar big bag of chips to take to school for HIS shared lunch day and he thinks he’s in heaven.
And I got tougher. I don’t care anymore what the other parents do or think. If some woman (or man) wants to slave for hours over an intricate, divinely inspired gourmet creation for their kid’s class shared lunch, then let ’em. And all the power to them. I stand in awe of them. And am happy to sample their fabulous food concoctions.
I, on the other hand, am far too busy doing other things that I’m good at. (Like watching an entire season of True Blood in one day. And eating a Dominos Shrimp pizza and hiding the box so the kids don’t find it when they come home from school and then have to eat cereal for dinner because their mother has been too busy watching True Blood to cook any food. Shhhh…don’t tell.)
No, after eighteen years of chasing after five kids, I hold this truth to be self-evident: a parent can’t be shamaahzing all the time…at everything… No matter how bad we want to be. And comparing ourselves to the cakes that look like these?
And be happy to be shaamaaahzing at the OTHER stuff you’re kick-butt awesome at.