“We never see you anymore!”
“I tried calling you last night…”
“What have you been up to?”
All of these are valid questions of interest to the friend that seemed to have fallen off the face of the earth the past few years – aka me. So what have I been up to? Sometimes I’m not even sure – until I REALLY think about it. Here's an average day in my house (this isn't considering any other factors – sickness, social engagements, husband out of town, etc. – that might throw a monkey wrench into our already “hanging on by a thread” lifestyle).
6:15 a.m. – This is sleeping in. Both babies have decided to stay in slumber and all is well in our world.
6:16 a.m. – Never mind! The baby can read minds, and an attempt to go to the bathroom in peace will have to wait. He NEEDS his bottle now, or our life as we know it will completely implode!
6:18 a.m. – Husband is done getting ready for the day so he takes baby. It's now my turn to shower and get ready for work. Hello wet hair in a pulled-back bun! We meet again.
6:45 a.m. – Wake up the toddler. This needs to be done with as much precision and delicate handling as a brain surgeon in the middle of an operation.
6:47 a.m. – FULL BLOWN TODDLER MELTDOWN. Reason? I LOOKED at her.
7 a.m. – Time to negotiate with toddler to use the toilet.
7:05 a.m. – No more negotiating. Pick toddler up and physically put on toilet and guard the bathroom door for her escape.
7:08 a.m. – Wrestle both children into clothes. They would both would rather be naked.
7:10 a.m. – FULL BLOWN TODDLER MELTDOWN AGAIN.
7:15 a.m. – Make coffee to-go, get both daycare bags, make sure dogs have food and fresh water.
7:22 a.m. – Attempt to get both kids in the car.
7:40 a.m. – Daycare drop-off!
8:10 a.m. – Late for work per usual on account of insane family morning life.
4:45 p.m. – Leave work, get into hot car and put on music. This is my only alone time for the next 24 hours. At this point it is somewhat enjoyable until…
4:46 to 5:30 p.m. – TRAFFIC.
5:31 p.m. – Daycare pick up! Toddler happy to see me! Baby happy to see me! Until…
5:40 p.m. – Attempt to get both in the car. I do not have a cake, milk, a balloon, purple sunglasses, a bottle, tickets to the moon or anything else demanded at the moment.
5:45 p.m. – Home! Get mail, get kids out of car, let dogs out, turn on lights, get snack IMMEDIATELY, change diaper, get toddler to go sit on the potty, negotiate with toddler to sit on the potty, physically pick toddler up to go on the potty.
6:15 p.m. – Dinnertime. What’s in the freezer? Gourmet corn dogs for those with teeth. Jar pureed sweet potatoes for baby. Dinner served.
6:50 p.m. – Dishes and clean up!
7 p.m. – BATH TIME!
7:15 p.m. – Pajamas!
7:16 p.m. – FULL BLOWN TODDLER MELTDOWN DUE TO HAVING TO PUT ON PAJAMAS!
7:20 p.m. – Turn off lights in house to simulate nighttime because daylight savings time hates parents of young children.
7:45 p.m. – Husband attempts to put baby to bed. I will not see him emerge for another 15 to 90 minutes depending on baby’s mood.
8 p.m. – Attempt to put toddler to bed. I will not emerge until story time/another lullaby/sip of water/NOW WANTS TO USE THE TOILET/thinks she saw a fly/thinks she heard a firework/wants a different stuffed animal/wants a different blanket/another kiss/another cuddle is done.
9:05 p.m. – Get clothes out for the next day, realize we all own one last clean outfit and can go another 24 hours without doing a load of laundry.
9:07 p.m. – Pull out work laptop and catch up with whatever I missed earlier in the day.
10:30 p.m. – Attempt to watch anything on Netflix with husband.
10:32 p.m. – Jerk awake on the couch and go to bed.
Anytime between 10:32 p.m. and 6:15 a.m. I will be woken up one to 100 times...
That is what I have been up to when it has been “just forever” since I’ve seen anyone. Don’t get me wrong – I’m not complaining about my parental life; I revel in it. I also still love being asked to join in a happy hour, get a phone call from an old friend or get out for a dinner party. However, the probability of going to any of those with short notice is about as possible of winning the lottery. Also, same goes for those events seemly planned a head of time. That’s the exact day I will end up with a sick child and have to cancel.
Tiring? Yes. Frustrating? Yes and no. Worth it? Absolutely.
Kristine Rohwer resides in Elkhorn, Nebraska, with her husband, step-son, daughter, son and two neurotic dogs.