The Willis Kids

Dear Indy’s Child,

I read on Facebook that you’re looking for a blogger. I would say you’re looking for “a Mommy Blogger,” but that term actually makes me throw up in my mouth a little. You outlined a few things you’d like to see in an Indy’s Child blogger, and I’m here to “explain how my qualifications and experiences are a perfect fit for your requirements.” (That sounded pretty official, didn’t it?)

1. Must be witty.

Okay, I’ve got this one covered. After all — as my children will attest amidst dramatic eye-rolling — I was voted “Best Sense of Humor” in the GCHS class of 1988. So there’s that.

2. Must share stories about every day life.

As the Queen of TMI, I don’t think you’ll hear any arguments about whether or not I’m willing to share our stories. In fact, you might be wishing I didn’t share quite so much. You’ve got a strong editorial staff, right?

3. Must submit a blog entry about a “typical day.”

Hmm. A typical day? That’s a stretch.

In this household, there are no typical days. Each and every moment brings new and different surprises to the table. Oh, sure, we’ve paved our own personal trail to the lacrosse fields and back. We can drive to the middle school with our eyes closed. We can run an elementary school open house with our hands tied behind our backs. We will, inevitably, have one kid down with a fever, one who missed the bus and needs to be picked up, one who refuses to eat the dinner his father has prepared, and one who is content to sit on the couch and vegetate… all day long.

Our routine may become redundant at times, but our days are far from typical. There are, however, some Universal Truths we can always rely upon.

1. Sam (14) will never be happy in the morning. It doesn’t matter if we wake him up at 5:00 AM for an out-of-state lacrosse tournament or if he rolls out of bed at noon of his own accord. He won’t be happy. And he’ll make sure the rest of us aren’t happy either. He’s a teenager, after all. It’s his job. And if there are no Pop-Tarts to fuel his eventual smile? Watch out.

2. Gus (12) will spend the majority of his day lurking in the pantry. He’ll steal a few crackers, sneak a couple of Thin Mints. When he’s not hiding beef jerky in his underwear drawer because he’s afraid his brothers will eat it all, he’ll be texting me to see if he’s allowed to pop a bag of popcorn or have a piece of gum.

3. Mary Claire (10) will experience some kind of female drama. She’ll either undergo a “friend break-up,” she’ll be heartsick over her latest crush, she’ll be ready to throw down with each and every one of her brothers, or she’ll blast “The Rose” on her iPod so we all can experience her Bette Midler-inspired angst.

4. George (8) will be put upon. Every day, George will be put upon. His life will be unfair, his siblings will get everything he wants, he will not get his allotted time on the XBox. And because his life is so hard, he’ll cry. Dramatically. And then he’ll be sent to his room. And then he’ll cry harder. And then I’ll turn Brandi Carlile up loudly enough to drown him out. And Mary Claire — who has finally reached a state of fragile bliss due to the soothing Justin Beiber poster taped to her ceiling — will cry again because she can no longer hear “The Rose.”

Every day, Chris and I will kiss each other goodbye, and every afternoon, we’ll debrief and share the day’s stories. We’ll marvel at how quickly our kids are growing, how outrageously sassy and sarcastic they’re becoming (where do they get those tendencies?), and how much money we’ll need to sock away for all the psychotherapy yet to come.

He’ll make dinner. I’ll do the dishes. Or we’ll all go to Chili’s and let someone else pick up the slack.

The kids will argue with us about whether or not they need to shower. And once we’ve convinced them that they do, indeed, stink, they’ll argue about who gets to shower first. And then they’ll blame each other for using all the hot water.

Once they’re all in bed, I’ll grab a novel and Chris will sit down to work on his dissertation. Or check Facebook.

Every day, we’ll love, laugh, argue, yell, apologize, hug, cry, sing, and dance. We’ll feed our kids, clothe them, encourage them, reward them, punish them, entertain them, and ground them.

These things are consistent.

Routine? Sometimes.

Crazy? Guaranteed.

Caffeine-driven? Of course.

But typical? Not this life. Not this house. Never, ever typical.

If you’d like me to blog for you, I will not disappoint. In fact, I’ll even promise to cut out all profanity and liquor references. I might be a bad influence on my own children, but I would never subject all the children of greater Indianapolis to that kind of debauchery. I can be a bit edgy at times. Chris says I’m not always a “gentle breeze.” Sam says I’m usually about a 10 mile per hour wind with a chance of heavy gusts. And there’s always the possibility for tornadic activity. But if you need me to tone it down a bit, I’m game for that, too.

Thanks, Indy’s Child, for considering me. Now I’m off to scrub toilets, make dinner, feed the dogs, clean the guinea pig cage, hit the grocery store, start the washing machine, unload the dishwasher, and shuttle some stinky middle school boys to and from lacrosse practice. It is, after all, just another day at the Willis abode.

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2 Responses

  1. NOTE: All adolescent boys are stinky. All boys, all the time. It’s not sweat, the result of not bathing, or from rolling in something dead…oh, wait that’s the dog…anyway, it’s not something they have control over. It’s a musky, acrid sign that the hormones have begun to course through their overheated bodies.

    I used to have the pleasure of hauling five high school freshman to rowing practice after school. After the half hour of driving was done I was gasping for fresh air.

    My husband says that women are especially good at sniffing this state since they are the ones who typically deal with the issues of puberty and subsequent maturity. It’s an evolutionary thing, says Himself.

    All I know is–they’re stanky.

  2. Thank God we have five showers for the day when we have five teenagers. Of course, when Truman hits teenage (meaning he will act like a ninety year old rather than an eighty year old), Katelyn will be 19 and off to college, so only summers and holidays will be truly “special”. But I’ll read your payblog to find out what I’m doing wrong and what you’re doing wrong!

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