Monday, July 2, 2012

24 Hours Is Never Enough: A Mother's Diary of Insanity

This is the re-post of a blog I wrote when my youngest was a baby.  

I am reasonably certain that the whole 24 hour day was created by man.   Not "man" as in "human".   A man.  The ones who can pee standing up and don't have to dry their hair in the mornings.  Some dude who figured he could neatly fit every little thing he needed into that span of time, be productive, and get a good 6-8 hours of sleep.  It wasn't a woman.  And if it WAS a woman, it was one with no children who only needs 4 hours of sleep and her lipstick always looks perfect.  She probably has time to brag about it too.  


I've got a newsflash for you:   24 hours is NOT enough.  And to prove my point, I give you the following typical  day in the life of this work at home mom:  

6:30 a.m.
Alarm goes off. Clock is on HIS side of the bed. He sleeps through tornados. Climb over his shoulder to punch the snooze button and jab him in the ribs to try and wake him up. This, of course, doesn't work.
6:45 a.m.
Alarm goes off again. Consider kicking him in the balls to encourage a quicker response. Decide against it as I value my life. Once again, jab him in the side and punch alarm clock.
7:00 a.m.
Alarm goes off again. Climb over him, pick up clock and throw against the wall. For some reason, the sound of a clock smashing into the wall wakes him up. I roll over and put the pillow over my head. I'll get up in 20 minutes.
7:20 a.m.
He gives me a kiss goodbye, reminding me of my intention to get up earlier. I grumble something to the effect of "bite me – oh, and have a good day" and roll back over and try to get back to sleep.
7:45 a.m.
My son is awake. "Mom…….MOM……… MOMMMM!!!!" I jerk upright in bed "Um, mom, are you awake?" I place my finger to his lips: "No talking to mommy before 8:00a.m. – go read your book." I toss myself over and pull blankets over my head, determined to get a few more minutes of sleep.
7:46 a.m.
I hear the baby crying. Dammit. 
I pull my sorry ass out of bed
7:50 a.m.
[skipping the part about peeing and brushing teeth]. I go to the baby's room and see that since I waited 5 minutes to get her, she has managed to unzip her pajamas, pull them off, remove her diaper, and is sitting there smiling at me. *groan*
8:00 a.m.
The baby is now changed and dressed. I stumble out to the kitchen to pour coffee. Spill half of it on the counter. Pour in some milk. Go wake up my oldest daughter. My son is following me "Mom, MOM, can I get on the computer?" I say "Did you EAT yet? [hiss, snarl]"
8:15 a.m.
Oldest daughter is awake, and in bathroom doing her hour-long morning ritual of beautifying herself for…….no particular reason at all. My son is looking in all the cupboards and the fridge declaring everything we have unfit for consumption. The baby has removed her shirt.
8:30 a.m.
My son is grumbling over a bowl of cereal, the baby is tossing her cereal across the table, apparently trying to hit her brother with it (I have to admit, she's a good shot) My oldest daughter is still primping. I holler at her to hurry it up and get some breakfast. She has "nothing to wear". 
9:00 a.m.
Mommy is on the back deck with the sliding door firmly shut, sipping coffee for a moment. Son is on computer, oldest is finally eating breakfast and the baby is eating crayons, er, I mean coloring.
9:15 a.m.
I venture back inside reluctantly. Finally get dressed, put my hair up in a clip and – oh – I better make some toast or something to eat.
9:45 a.m.
Everyone fed and out the door to take the kids to the library for 2 hours of reading and summer time volunteering. YAY! 
10:15 a.m.
Back home. Older kids are at the library. I think I'll get on the computer for a few minutes to check in my fellow bloggers and online friends. Baby climbs on dining room chair and pulls full glass of juice to the floor. @$%!
10:30 a.m.
Floor and baby cleaned. Nick Jr. on television to occupy the child for a little while.  Pour second cup of coffee. Go to log onto computer. Phone rings. Mother in law wants to know if she is going to see the kids again before they turn 18. I assure her that is highly likely. We then proceed to talk about everything that has happened in the last month.
11:00 a.m.
Go to log onto computer. YAY! I made it! I have messages and comments and no time to respond to them. Yep, I'm a big jerk. Feel momentary guilt and then remember – uh – it's just the damn computer. You'll get to it soon enough.
11:30 a.m.
I've responded to a few messages and read a few blogs and started typing a blog of my own. I realize it's very quiet all of a sudden. Where is the baby??
11:31 a.m.
Find baby coloring a mural on the living room wall. Take crayons from her and begin scrubbing wall with one of those magic eraser things. Trying to keep the cursing under my breath.
11:45 a.m.
Time to go pick up kids. Change baby's diaper, grab purse and head out the door. Put baby in car seat, sit in van and can't find the damn keys. Go in house, tear it apart, finally find keys in bottom of laundry basket where my baby girl apparently put them.
12:00 p.m.
Now I'm really going to pick up the kids.
12:30 p.m.
Everyone home, lunch is served. "If you don't like it don't eat. [heading off my son's complaining] but you don't get any snacks or anything else until dinner." I swear I heard him curse under his breath.
12:45 p.m.
Kids eating sandwiches and soup, actually enjoying it but trying not to show it to me.
1:00 p.m.
"Moooooooooommm! We're bored." 
I reply: "The toilets need to be cleaned!"
1:15 p.m.
Kids are shooting hoops outside in an effort to escape the slave labor mom has promised
1:30 p.m.
Oh yeah – I should eat something for lunch
1:45 p.m.
Lay baby down for nap and cross fingers that she will actually sleep.
2:00 p.m.
Kids are inside "Mommmmmmmmm!! We're bored!" I let them come in from the fresh air for awhile and tell them they can watch a movie or something. 
2:15 p.m.
I've eaten an apple, a yogurt and the other half of my daughter's sandwich. Time to get to work. I go sit in my office and realize it really needs to be organized. I begin going through paperwork. I see a bill that is due. Oh man, I'd better call them and pay that right away…..[you can see where this is going]
4:15 p.m.
I've accomplished about one hour's worth of actual "work", and neatly arranged paperwork in stacks. I've paid five bills and done two loads of laundry. Oh yeah, today is looking up.
4:20 p.m.
Baby wakes up – Diaper duty, snack and juice. 
Kids go outside for awhile.
4:30 p.m.
Dammit, what's for dinner? Is it against the law to skip a night?  (Note to self: Research legalities of switching kids to every-other-night dinner schedule)
5:00 p.m.
Cook up some chicken stir-fry and eggrolls while peeling my baby girl off my leg and yelling out the window at the kids to stop fighting.
5:30 p.m.
Kids come in to argue over who gets to set the table and who gets to pour milk. I'm about ready to tell them both to take their meals outside and drink from the hose.
6:00 p.m.
Dad's home, dinner served. The "How was your day" routine begins. He can tell by the look on my face that they should skip me.
6:30 p.m.
Dinner's done, I escape to have "me" time. Which means either grocery shopping or going to the gym.   Be still my beating heart.
8:00 p.m.
Mommy returns. 
Baby goes to bed.  
Kids watch TV. 
Dad napping on the couch.
8:15 p.m.
I've finished cleaning up the kitchen and contemplated folding laundry. I decide it will wait until tomorrow and I return to the computer, determined to write a blog.
8:30 p.m.
I realize I have total writer's block.
8:45 p.m.
I'm IMing my writer friends and avoiding the laundry.
10:00 p.m.
I really should go to bed.
11:00 p.m.
I'm getting really tired. I should stop reading blogs and go to bed.
11:30 p.m.
Eyes drooping….Finally an idea for a blog pops into my head. Unfortunately I can no longer keep my eyes open long enough to type.
I'm out