I make my bed every day. It is not a chore to me, it's just part of life, like sleeping and putting on underwear. While having kids challenged the “neat freak” in me, it didn’t affect my Type A tendencies. And let’s face it, Type A moms are the best friend everyone needs. We carry stain remover, have memorized the standard testing schedule, and always have a spare gift stashed away for a last minute occasion. (Actually, if anyone is in the market for a lavender tealight candle set, I’d really like to unload that. I need the closet space.)
Type A moms like me are too concerned about getting things "right" than we are about getting credit for them. I am happy to help other moms, only because it means I am influencing others to conform to my way way of doing things. I’m not exaggerating, either. I mean, it’s stressful to have so many parenting styles out there, especially as my kids get older. My daughter is becoming a tween and I’m met with a lot of, “But so-and-so’s mom lets her,” comments when we get into it about having a Youtube account. I really wish I could gather all the families of my children’s friends together so we can agree on how we’re handling things outside of school. And by “agree,” I guess I mean agree to whatever my plan is, because I thoroughly researched it and it is the most effective. According to me.
Bossiness can be a dangerous byproduct of being Type A, and I am able to control my need to control everything (see what I did there?). Luckily, being Type A and having a sense of humor are not mutually exclusive. There are lots of reasons why we make terrific buddies:
Our House Is Always Safe For Playdates
With our first baby, we childproofed everything: cabinets, toilet seats, edges of tables, corners of coffee tables. We even had a fridge lock. So whenever we hosted a play date, parents were totally comfortable having their little ones toddle around our home. Admittedly, we slacked off when our second child was born, and after realizing that the drawer catches caused more frustration than they prevented accidents.
We Have No Shortage Of Tissues…
I have tissues in every pocket and crevice. True, some of them may be used, but in an emergency they can be used to wipe off the most egregious puddle of spit-up. I don’t think I’m that unique among my mom friends in this way. But what ups the Type A factor is that I keep the tissues in ziplock bags to avoid them coming into contact from germs before use.
… Or Baby Wipes
It's worth the shoulder pain to lug around a pound of wipes in my diaper bag because they come in handy in situations that don’t necessarily involve my child’s butt. Their use has been expanded, but not limited, to: dirty restaurant tables, lipstick marks (stop kissing the baby’s head, Grandma), and unidentifiable green stuff… everywhere. You can count on us in sticky situations.
We Never Forget To Ask About Food Allergies
This may be more because and less about me being Type A, but I extend to other parents the same courtesy I would like when it comes to serving food to children. I always ask if the child has any food issues, and am upfront about keeping a nut-free home. You can eat off my floors, not because they’re clean, but because they are free and clear of allergens.
We Do Our Research
Whether it’s about sleep schedules, weaning, screen time, or the safest laundry detergent, we know our sh*t. Knowledge is power and my theory is, if the knowledge is out there, we would just be lazy not to seek it out and arm ourselves with information. This can backfire, though. I have suffered from information overload, where I just spiral down rabbit holes on the internet while researching the best sensory balls for older babies. That was a huge time suck. I blame it on being a first-time parent, though. I was much more efficient with my time when my second kid was born, mainly because I had that much less of it.
Our Hand-Me-Downs Are On Point
I don’t dry clean my kids’ clothes, but I do make a point of stockpiling the ones in good condition they’ve outgrown to pass along to friends with younger kids. Without meaning to, I guess my children have amassed a good amount of clothing, since I tend to buy things when they're on sale, even if they’re in a too-big size. Eventually, my kid will grow into those pants, and they can then be passed along to neighborhood friends or donated for clothing drives at school and work.
We Won’t Make You Wait
I pride myself on being on time, especially when it comes to events that involve children. I am not exaggerating when I say I get outraged when people cancel or significantly alter plans on me and my family late in the game. One time my kids and I were supposed to have a movie play date with another mom and her kids, but a minute before we left the house she texted me that she’d have to cancel. My children were so bummed, and while I don’t think I should protect my kids from disappointment (clearly it’s a life skill they need to have), I do get angry at adults who don’t consider children’s tender hearts when turning their world upside down. I get that stuff happens and plans change, but I get pretty ticked off if that is for a preventable reason.
Having kids has taught me that I have to build in extra time if we are going anywhere. I wish other parents were more Type A in this way.
Spreadsheets Don’t Scare Us
When my son was 1-year-old, I got promoted into a new position that involved some new skills, including some heavy budgeting. I had never done this before, but my boss shrugged it off. “I know you can learn it,” he told me, ushering in a confidence with numbers I had never had before. Turns out, I am a math person. I just needed someone to tell me to believe that about myself.
Ever since that job, I’ve embraced spreadsheets. And do you know how much of parenting can be managed through the magic of Excel? Contact lists, household expenditures, our kids’ schedules and chore charts are tools that have helped me to feel somewhat organized through the chaos of raising two children. Type A moms know how to format cells, and it would be our absolute pleasure to teach you (especially if it means we can finally be off the hook for re-running for Treasurer of the PTA.)
We Can Locate All Fire Exits
OK, I don’t do this, but I know some moms who do and I should really take a lesson from them. I do make sure to locate all bathrooms wherever we go with kids, though. That has to count for something.