What Matters More?

So, two things.  Number one.  Anson’s father is worried that only one of our twin sons has the ability to smile, as all the pictures I’ve posted have had Sheppard smiling, with Smith mostly throwing shade.  Well.  Dang.  Ok, to clear that up here’s Super Secret Agent Smith from yesterday:

Happy Monkey.

Laughing Monkey.

Believe it.  Smitty is super happy, except when he’s not.

But I will not post those pictures because they will make you boo-hoo sad.

Now with that out of the way, let’s get to the second thing.

Last night, I had purpose.  I wanted this to happen: Anson would walk through the door from work, and the house would be straightened, music playing, dinner ready, babies asleep, Roan done with homework, working at his art station, I would actually not be wearing the same thing I wore yesterday, and….scene!  I mean, c’mon.  It’s not all that hard. (?)

So I was close, baby this close.  House? Check.  Music? Check.  Dinner ready?  Sort of – in the oven and on its way.  Babies asleep?  Ummm…off and on.  Roan happily caught up in drawing and creating?  Yup.  Did I remember to get dressed today? Eh… hells bells you can’t have it all.  And happy little Smitty woke up, again.  So I busied myself by putting him into a trance.  Then I heard Roan say, from the kitchen, “I love you Mom.”

Sweet, right?  Yes yes yes.  But it is also what he says when he thinks he’s done something wrong.  I don’t know when it started but I have to hand it to him for figuring out a way to mitigate oncoming consequences by declaring his undying love.

So I asked him what was up.  And he again told me he loved me.  So I put down Secret Agent Smith, walked into the kitchen and my feet actually stuck to the floor. S-T-U-C-K.  The floor was shiny.  And wet.  “I made juice.”  Roan told me.  “And some accidentally spilled on the floor.”  I’m guessing all of it?  So this was not in my meticulously planned evening.  And my mad face made its way onto my head and Roan looked nervous and Smith started crying and a really crap song came onto my Genius playlist and I could smell dinner starting to burn and you know, I was about to lose it.

But I didn’t.  Because the question “What matters?” and then “What matters, more?” asked itself to me.  What mattered?  That I had tried to have a normal night with things in order, and it was going down in flames.  What mattered more?  That Roan played with his brothers today, read to them, made them laugh, drew a design for a wedding dress for me (should I ever need one again, that is…), and tried to make juice on his own because he could see I was busy.  What mattered more was that he needed to feel like it was ok to make mistakes and that his mother was not a crazy person who was going to freak out at him for spilling juice on the floor.

So I asked him to help me clean it and he was on it.  Roan grabbed the mop and handed it to me and as I schlepped up sticky grape juice off the floor, my boy Roan went over to his crying brother and soothed him, getting him almost back to sleep.  Everything came back down to zero, you know?  Nothing was really wrong as it turned out, and had I not realized what mattered more, I could have knocked Roan down to his knees for making a mistake.  Not cool.

So.  This is my new question to myself, when I feel myself loosing it.  What matters more?  If I have a right to be angry, I will be.  But if I can take a step away from whatever the situation is, and see that it might actually not matter as much as it may seem – well then, I’m backing down.  Seriously, it’s that simple.  What matters more?

Anson came home last night to one sleeping baby, one slightly fussy baby, a son entranced in designing a tuxedo for Anson to get married in (should he ever need one again….), a pan full of delicious Chicken Enchiladas, and a wife who looked slightly disheveled but certainly not unhappy.  Not bad.

And, scene.

10 thoughts on “What Matters More?

  1. I use a similar trick when I am mad at my husband – I ask myself, “do I still love him?”. Inevitably, the answer is yes, which makes me put what ever it is that set me off back into prospective. This system works for me – 15+ years and counting.

  2. My parents took me to the doctor because I was not yet smiling. His response yo my mother was that I took after my worried father who in the waiting room-so I was told. Laughing ever since, especially on how it dawns on me how come my dad was in the waiting room, the dark ages, I guess.

  3. Jodi and Anson, the pictures and commentary is so wonderful..We can’t wait for our trip to Brooklyn to hold those little guys, and play with Roan. Don’t let them get too big!!! (Like you could really stop it.)

  4. Jodi,
    I always enjoy reading your blog, but sometimes, posts like this one remind me that I will NOT always get things exactly right and that someday I’m going to be happy and pleasantly disheveled in a house with a man I love and babies I love and that all this craziness that is my twenties will be a sweet time to call upon in my writing. Thank you.

  5. amazing – you daily. I am proud to know you.
    I want to come over soon and help or make you laugh.(which is help) or you make me laugh – which you do so well.
    You are shining in flying colors!

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