Monday, October 29, 2007
Calgon, Take Me Away
Do you remember those old Calgon commercials? You know, the ones where the poor mother slips into her tub and the sound of fighting children and all the world's cares just slip away, the bubbles creating some sort of protective cocoon? I found myself starring in those commercials in my head over the weekend.

I honestly don't know how my mother or stepmother did it. Because I am about 8 seconds away from going bat-shit crazy, and that's no lie. I feel like my temper is perpetually locked in an action-adventure movie with my temper being the bomb that gets shut down at 0.3 seconds remaining on the clock. I nearly came unglued last night at JoAnn Fabrics, for example.

How does the modern wife/mother/business woman do it? I call upon the powers that be to make a change and give me another 24 hours in a week! Just another 3.5 hours each day, or one additional day each week would do the trick. Can we go to a 27.5 hour day? Seems a bit random, doesn't it?

Well, here's the thing: I'm not getting everything done. And that, my friends, is not something that is acceptable long-term.

My house needs to be cleaned in the worst way. I can't even stand it. I need to work out, but instead of my goal of 3 treadmill sessions and 2 pilates, I'm barely getting in 2 treadmills and 1 pilates. Unacceptable. The Halloween costume that I started over 6 weeks ago is still not finished. The dress is mostly done, but I still have to sew in all the metal loops so that it will lace up the back. And the crown - not even started. I haven't started the veil yet either. My house looks like a Toys 'R Us exploded, either that or the toys became self-aware and decided to get even with Geoffrey (that big giraffe) in a melee that ended with toys all over the battlefield.

And I'm short-tempered too. My volunteer project - let's just say I'm beginning to identify that decision as a serious mistake. It was supposed to be fun and make me feel good about helping some young women. Instead, I am reminded of how bitchy, insulting, and just downright nasty some young women can be. It takes me away from my husband and child and I have yet to see the payback for that. Last night, for example, I got all dolled up in my black velvet, pearls, and my favorite Italian pumps and headed down to Madison.

On the way, I stopped at JoAnn Fabrics to pick up the last little loops for the Halloween costume. I had literally hoped to just run in and out. I knew the exact location of the item I needed. I rapidly walked to the back of the store, located the item, and returned to the cashier at the front of the store. Only, when I got there there were 8 people in line ahead of me. Good grief! Did they add another cashier? No. Hell no! I had to stand in line for 15 minutes to check out $2.27 worth of product. Ridiculous! And, I might add, really shitty customer service at a place where you can pretty well know that your peak season is going to be Halloween. No amount of apologizing on the cashier's part made me feel any better, though I did not take my ire out on her.

I got to the house and encountered one drama after another. Despite assuring my husband that I'd be home before 9 pm, I only managed to pull into the driveway at 8:58 p.m. Husband and child were abed, but I was too keyed up from all of the drama to fall asleep, so I watched some Law & Order and finally fell asleep somewhere around 10 pm. And slept, until 2:30 am when the child woke screaming. I got up with her and she finally fell back asleep at 4:20 - forty short minutes before my alarm was re-set to ring (originally it was set for 4 am so that I could get on the treadmill, but when she was still up at 3:30 I re-set it).

At 5 am, I jumped in and out of the shower and performed my hair and makeup routine on autopilot. Then I woke the baby and got her in and out of the bath, blew her hair dry, and still made it downstairs by 6:05. Who's a rockstar?

Bunny Boop sat there at the table yawning and eating her Life cereal (cinnamon) while I ran around the house gathering diaper bag, my stuff for work, the Halloween costume, thread, and scissors in a third bag. Then, as I'm making my own breakfast - oatmeal - I'm also loading the car and gathering coats and shoes like an olympic medalist in the 5-mile mother's medley. Bunny Boop is happy and watching Franklin (hey it's Franklin, ....) and I'm gobbling up the oatmeal like it is my first meal in ages (it's not) and then we are loading up and pulling out of the driveway.

I head over to the sitter's, deploying my happy but tired child, then plug in my ipod for some much needed brain time. Or should I say, brain-dead time? My back aches in this odd place that only bothers me when I'm stressed. I'm hungry, but I think it is the stress and fatigue talking through my stomach.

My weekend? What weekend? I don't even remember Friday, but on Saturday we went to Prince Charming's nephew's sectional football game (they won and he had a HUGE game), whereupon I claimed the windshield time to hem the Halloween costume. Then yesterday I fought the masses at the grocery store and made it out in 30 minutes flat!

There's more, but really, I don't have the energy to type it all out. Suffice it to say that I'm drowning in clutter and a to-do list that won't quit.

And I could really use a personal assistant or a house-boy or maybe a Mary Poppins of my own.


posted by Phoenix | 10:12 AM


At 2:32 PM, Blogger Caltechgirl said...

All I can tell you is to decide what matters least and just let it go for a bit. And that might be something different every day... You can't be everything or do everything, as cool as that sounds. Focus on what's most important at the time and do that first, then move to the next thing on your list. Otherwise you are going to lose your sanity and Miss Bunny is going to have a grumpy Mom all the time. Seriously.


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