My wife, Jeni, is throwing a bachelorette weekend extravaganza for her sister, Lisa, this weekend. So, I’m soloparenting, and my shift began a little before noon today. The boys and I like to refer to these times as “Boy Weekends” or “Boy Time.” The first task was lunch, so I ordered four ketchup and cheese burgers and one only ketchup (for Jackson). Then we drove over to Publix to grab a bag of chips and some milk for breakfast in the morning. I pushed Caedmon through the store in his new wheelchair while I held Andrew’s hand. Jack held Toby’s like a wake-boarder holds the ski-rope, as Toby sprinted through the aisles. In a moment of subconscious genius I had selected my Superdad T-shirt when I dressed this morning, and I woman noticed. “Judging by what I’m seeing, I’d say that shirt’s probably true,” she said. As a total aside, the woman in front of us at the checkout line looked at me and the boys, who were behaving quite well, crinkled her nose and shook her head in disgust. It was as if the boys were naked, covered in feces, and rolling all over the store’s merchandise. I enjoyed the glorious irony when she left her keys on the counter in her rush to escape the pack of gremlins, and Jackson politely ran them to her. That’s all, back to Superdad.
My little trip was nothing. In and out of Publix with three items in less than ten minutes. I’ll have the boys for one full day, a trip to church, and rendezvous with the real superhero on Sunday. Jeni does this almost every single day, and oh so much more. Today marks ten years of marriage for us, and a little over eight as parents. Jeni makes it all go; she’s Supermom.
I imagine myself like the copycat from The Dark Knight that asks the real Batman why he’s the only one who gets to fight crime, Batman growls, “I’m not wearing hockey pants!” Moms don’t need a goofy shirt to mark their hero status because, like Batman, you know them by their works.
Jeni manages the education of our boys, feeds them almost every lunch, makes many of our dinners, transports them across the map of Tallahassee all week, washes, dries, and folds their clothes, keeps the dishes clean, and still finds the time and energy to do things like throw a bachelorette weekend for her sister. She’s not human.
I know a lot of moms like her. Under the radar heroes who keep our society operating efficiently. God bless the poets, first responders, members of our armed services, teachers, doctors, and leaders, but they’ve got nothing on the mommy militia.
I love my wife, but I respect the mother living in my home. I enjoy my best friend, but I’m inspired by the woman who manages our house and kids. As we celebrate ten years since we made our Forever Vow, I’m not amazed nearly enough by the strength, ingenuity, enthusiasm, creativity, and dedication that pours out of the 5’3″ powerhouse that let’s me call her bride.
Here’s to all the Supermoms out there. Keep fighting the good fight!