My husband, who is a math teacher and a baseball coach, has been on spring break for the last few days. The anticipation I worked up in honor of his break made me giddy: he would be home to help with morning chaos and the kids’ bath time and maybe–just maybe–I could sleep in. All very selfish, I know. I don’t care.
After the first 4 hours of his being “on break,” it became clear to me that even though I love him and his helping hand, I run this piece and quite frankly, he was cramping my style. As I worked at our kitchen table grading one too many plagiarized essays (note to lazy wastes of space: if you’re going to cheat, please remove hyperlinks from final drafts. thanks), Zach went about washing windows. This, obviously, was his way of passing judgment on my less than stellar housekeeping skills. As he whistled while he worked (literally), I could feel the fury boiling inside of me. I wanted to yell: I WAS GOING TO DO THAT NEXT WEEK! but instead I just said, “You have streaks.” I’m quite the team player.
The bottom line: I suck at keeping the house clean and my husband hates me for it.
My dreams of sleeping in were quickly thwarted by the cutest little alarm clock ever:
Each morning around 3am I hear this child grunting as though she’s trying to push her crib across the floor. I ignore her and she falls back to sleep until 5:30 when she starts with the infamous, “mum-mum-mum-mum.” This quickly escalates in both volume and intensity if she has to wait more than 6 seconds: “MUMUMUMUMUMUMUM!” For fear that she will wake her brother and/or the rest of our neighborhood, I go to her, nurse her for 2 minutes, and she’s sound asleep again. I realize this is my fault; I should ignore the 5:30 crib-side service request lest she continue to expect my early morning appearance. But because 5:30am is a proper time for responsible adults to wake up and start their day, I have come to terms with the fact that after I press snooze at 3am, I will wake up 2.5 hours later. And then go back to bed because being a responsible adult makes me very tired.
The bottom line: my daughter continues to mess with my sleep because she hates me.
My son had a fever this past week, one that didn’t go anywhere but up despite medicine and the recommended fluids and rest. As a result, we made a trip to the emergency room as per the on-call nurse’s suggestion. Let me just say that Childrens Hospital is the most wonderful yet awful place on earth. We were very fortunate to be sent home with a diagnosis of a viral infection, treatable with more meds, but not before I witnessed my little man listless, barely able to walk save his wobbly trip across the living room into my arms, and unable to speak without it coming out pathetic and whiny. In retrospect, no biggie. Hard knocks of parenting. But at the time, I was never so scared in my life.
The bottom line: My son knows how much I love him so he scared me because…he hates me?
Okay, I’m probably exaggerating just a wee bit, but how about this for proof: Remember this scene from National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation where the Griswolds’ uppity neighbors were trying to get romantic in their house next door, but the sudden illumination of the Christmas lights temporarily blinds them? Zach does that to me almost on a nightly basis. He flips on the lights as I’m walking upstairs and just as I’m about to take another step, he flips them back off and I’m left stumbling around like a drunk. He laughs until he can’t catch his breath and he and the kids high five each other, silently making a pact to really off me.
Alright, fine. He’s just double-checking to make sure the front door is locked. And the kids are already in bed so that last part that was just a figment of my imagination. Tomato, tomato…that doesn’t work as well in writing…
Turns out, my family is pretty awesome. My husband wants to help me and make our home a better place; my daughter is soothed instantly by me; and my son only wanted his Mommy in his darkest hour. I should maybe re-title this post, then. My Family is Trying to Kill Me with Kindness? I kinda like them.