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Socks that Match

January 28, 2012

You must have been warned against letting the golden hours slip by; but some of them are golden only because we let them slip by.
James M. Barrie

I have a confession. I hate dealing with socks. Every morning, trying to get the kids dressed, it’s the socks that make me lose it. Trying to get socks that match. Socks that fit. Socks that work well with the various braces that my two younger girls wear. Socks that match their outfits. I hate socks. They get mismatched in the wash, or eaten by the dryer. Who knows where they end up?

Inevitably, at least one of my kids leaves the house looking a bit like Punky Brewster, with two mismatched socks. But hey, they’re clean. They’re comfortable. And really, who’s gonna be looking at their feet? Usually some well-intentioned little old lady, will feel the need to not only notice, but to point it out to me, as though I am unaware that Joyce is wearing one purple and one pink sock. Mother of the year, that’s me.

Somehow, in all the craziness of constant therapists in and out of my house, the laundry is the single most difficult part of my housework to accomplish. Really, who wants to be folding their underwear in front of therapists while they are working in your house? So the sock matching gets left to the end- meaning it just doesn’t get done.

The socks make me crazy, but it’s not really about the socks. It is the straw that breaks this camel’s back every morning. It is the one thing that brings all the mommy guilt straight to the surface and often boils right over the top. Somehow those mismatched socks remind me of all the things I just can’t seem to keep up with. The “typical” stuff that a “good” mom should get done each day. The laundry. Weeding the garden. Vacuuming the house. Getting all those extra Christmas decorations put away, before Valentine’s Day….

Maybe it’s not “can’t” but “won’t.”

I might have the time to match the socks, but I’d much prefer to read a princess story with Joyce.

I might have time to repaint the hallway, but I’d much rather discuss the details of a solar-powered car with Troy.

I might have time to clean out that closet, but I choose to snuggle on the couch under a blanket with Mary.

This is how I choose to spend those precious few minutes of unscheduled time. I choose to spend it with my children, doing the things that mean something to them. But even then, there is the guilt. There are all those things that I just don’t have time to do right now, mainly because I would rather spend the time being with my children.

This weekend will be a cleaning of house. I will have the kids help me clean out those closets. Then we will all go sock shopping. Everyone will get plain white socks. It will help a little with that guilt. I hope.

It’s not about the socks. It’s about the time. Time that is so incredibly precious.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. January 29, 2012 11:40 pm

    I SOOO get this post! It’s why both of my kids wore white Old Navy toddler socks (with the rubber grippies for extra stability for the one with low tone) for years. Every sock matched. Even my own socks–once a year I’d buy a new batch. No random socks that needed pairing.

    Laundry often gets left clean in a huge pile. I call it Mt. Washmore. At least it’s clean!

    Other things are harder to let go of. I have a few things I like to have just so. It makes life easier, for example, when we don’t have too much clutter around. But matching socks…life is too short!

  2. January 30, 2012 1:27 am

    I am so glad I’m not the only one with this problem! I also have a “Mt. Washmore” of clean, but unfolded laundry on our guest bed. Or when it does get folded, it doesn’t get put away because the kids are sleeping. So there it sits, folded in the baskets, until we go hunting through it, in a panic, looking for (what else) socks! Then everything is unfolded again…. I need some of those little elves that the old cobbler had- you know the ones who come in during the night and get everything done for you- for me it would be the laundry! 🙂

  3. February 7, 2012 8:53 pm

    All our socks are white we seperate and put in the drawers without matching or folding.. However; I have this same discussion with my husband. I COULD care about dusting, I could worry about dishes in the sink… But why ????
    People do not understand when moms in our position have to be the therapist, the nurse, the teacher, or the taxi. Sometimes WE just NEED precious mom and child play time. It’s the moment when we consciously throw all the worries and concerns out the window and focus on the moment in front of us…..
    Thanks for discussing this topic it’s Feels good to know someone else has faced that.

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