>No Yelling on the Dance Floor

28 Jan

>Usually when the hubby has to leave town for work, I’m all a-flutter. Stressed out in anticipation of the extra stress. (Yes, I probably need meds.) But this week, I was fine. He’s starting to travel more frequently, so it’s becoming old hat. Or maybe I’m just wearing one. Either way.

The thing about this week was the sheer volume of activities that were slated to be undertaken. During my best weeks, I’m not a fan of not breathing. And this week, I checked the calendar and breathing was no where to be found.

So we waved him off to the airport on Sunday afternoon while I was cooking my new favorite lasagne. Thing is, it takes like two hours. So while I am saying, “Bye now. Have a good one.” I have my hands in olive oil, laying out pasta sheets and Miss 8-i-TUDE walks up and says, “Mom? Can you not yell at us this week?” (The front door hasn’t even closed on the departing father unit, mind you.) I decide to keep my cool and only glance up at her vaguely while I say, “Did you tell Daddy good-bye?” Evade. Evade. No promises made. And I’m thinking, “I may have to yell RIGHT NOW. JUST. BECAUSE. YOU. ASKED. ME. THAT.”

We eat our dinner hours later, stay up a little to watch ‘Broken Down House Show.’ And, I, in my infinite wisdom, decide to have the girls sleep with me. Miss 8-i-TUDE in bed with me and Bean in the guest room close by. They go down fine. Straight to sleep. I do the household pre-morning prep routine and go to bed. It isn’t until around 1:20 am that I hear Bean. “Mommy? I need to go to the bathroom.” I just want to get to her quickly and quietly so Miss-miss doesn’t wake up too — and realize she’s locked herself in the bedroom. I fumble around for the metal thing-a-mah-jiggy that unlocks while motioning for her to turn the lock. And Miss 8 wakes up. I finally free Bean with assistance from Miss and we hurry to the potty. Bean does her thing and then says, “I need new panties.” And flings hers to the floor. I’m all foggy and like — why? — and grab them up. Wet. Soaking. Shit.

I run back to the room and yes-indeedy: bed wet. Damn, damn, damn. So it’s everyone wide awake now and I say, “To your own beds!” Protests, cries, etc. But mama needs some salvaged rest. And this is only day one.

Monday was all blurry. I think most days lately have been. Bean can’t seem to keep her fanny in the bed. I’ve tried threats, sticker charts, ice cream promises with Purse Girl. You name it. She still gets up at 4 or 5 or sometimes 6:15. I bought a clock and made a sign with 6:3. “Don’t get up until the first two numbers match.” To my bedside she arrives, patting my face with her little girl fingers, voice all trembly with excitement. “Mom! Mom! I sleeped ‘til 7!” Open one eye. Clock clearly says FOUR. Noooo. Seriously. No.

So a middle of the night bed wetting incident was just the cherry on top. I could be losing my mind. I decide to blow off work a bit and nap. The moment I settle into a good sleep, the stupid tree cutters a couple of houses away decide that is the very moment they should get down to some branch grinding. I could scream. So I give up. Get on with the day. Pick up from school. Make dinner. Argue with 8 about her book report. Finish work. And I get them to bed at like 6 pm on Monday. Somehow. Take one long, deep breath.

Next morning, we make it past 6. But I am thinking that if I could just ONE TIME sleep until I WOKE UP. It would be a freaking miracle. And so I yell. (But just a little.) Mommy is getting very cranky.

We proceed to Tuesday. It’s Magic of Science Night for 3rd grade and Miss 8-i-TUDE is all TUDE. She starts giving me grief the minute I pick her up from school. She’s supposed to be practicing her script and she goes all arm-crossed. “You know what? You don’t have to practice. I’ll just let your teacher know that you refused so she’s prepared that you won’t be.” She slams into the house. Stomps feet. And starts to practice. And when I have the nerve to hang up my purse and take off my coat and shoes versus standing rapt with attention, she says, “See?! You aren’t even watching! I’m telling Mrs. J that you wouldn’t watch me so I couldn’t practice!” Shit-damn.

We head out to meet Nanners and her mom, Purse Girl and fam for an insanely early dinner. Magic starts at 5:30. Miss 8-i-TUDE is mad this time because I tell her, “No. You may not go play outside at the restaurant. We are here to eat and eat quickly before your show.” She spends the entire dinner crying and with her head down. Come to find out, she was a nervous wreck about her experiment going right and her lines. But she ends up acing it all. One more night down.

I also have work. Revised ad campaign concepts to get to one client, a bid for a brochure for another, website edits to finish, an HTML to revise and about a BOAT full of paperwork to deal with. It’s 1099 week at the OK Corral, doncha know. I also lost two invoices and owe my contractors money. Need to write up my expense report. It truly, truly never ends.

Next morning, I wake up to a clogged toilet.

It’s also Wednesday — which is my longer run day. So I set out to get in 5 miles before the day kicks in. I get back and don’t stop for a solid three hours. Called Bean’s school to see if they had room to keep her extra. They didn’t. I scramble around thinking that if I don’t get in a shower, I won’t for the rest of my life. School calls at 15 minutes ‘til early pick up to say, “She can stay!” I fist pump once, twice. Then stop. Breath one more long, deep breath. Then hop in the shower.

I make it to the bank and post office all before Miss 8’s pick up. Bean falls asleep in the car. Purse Girl says she’ll get 8 for me. Okay. This might work. I eat lunch at around 3:00 with Bean zonked in the car in the garage. I peek out on her every few minutes. The last peek out, I see eyes. So I smile and say, “Hi!” She scowls at me and rolls away onto the backseat when I unstrap her and proceeds to throw a full-blown tantrum for the next 30 minutes. I carry her into the house by one leg and another arm, dodging kicks directed at my head. I finally figure out that my particular sin with this kid at this moment was that I was born. And therefore she was.

But we pick up Miss 8 from jumprope and deposit her at piano. Purse Girl takes Bean while I shuttle around, pick up a pizza and make it home just as the babysitter arrives. I race out to my waiting ride and some sushi downtown with friends to discuss my recent resignation as lead of Garden to Table at Miss 8’s school. The whole dinner and a jug of sake later I think, “This is the start. Of my quitting. Everything. Until I can breathe again officially.”

It’s snowing on the ride home.

This morning, I hear Bean up and it’s actually after 6:30. It’s Breakfast for Haiti at school, so I hurry to get dressed, clothes out for the girls, lunches packed, snow boots on and I head out to shovel last night’s dumping. A fairly light dusting by recent winter standards, but enough to make me sweat and cancel out yesterday’s shower.

I haven’t even thought about today yet. I know I have to bake stuff for another Haiti benefit event in the form of a bake sale on Friday. Miss 8 has to be at the orthodontist at 5ish and I need to dodge work long enough to run today. Icy sidewalks be damned.

We’re going out to dinner again. And the hubby gets in at midnight. This blog entry is my breath today. Tomorrow is another day.

TODAY’S THEME SONG: Richman. 3Oh!3. I mean, what can I say? Three babies in the backset singin‘ — To you. Hey DJ, won’t you play that song for me? And turn it up on your radio? I got 200 seconds and I’m ready to go.


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