Today was the day. I had been planning it for the last month. Finally, the rolling Jewish holidays were mostly over, the kids would have after school activities twice a week. Time. To. Myself.
For the days leading up to it, I fingered the calendar- October 4th-with my un-manicured index finger, practically giddy with the secret I kept. This was to be the first of twelve weekly glorious eight hour days to myself. Crafty Me.
Part One: Husband takes kids to school. LOVE Husband for taking the kids to school.
Part Two: Continue three day gym streak with day number four-possibly take additional dance class.
Part Three: Begin Operation Write the Fucking Book Already-the idea is in place, software is installed, what is the hold up?
Part Four: Open the garage and face the hideousness. Possibly call that chubby Aussie TV personality to assist.
Part Five: Organizing=Porn for Women. Cue seventies music....boomchickaboomchicka..let's do it every room in the house...Office, Playroom, Kitchen, Closets, Bathroom Cabinet...oooh baby....pant pant ...pant..
Part Five: Mundane-car wash, grocery shopping, tidy up, bills, clean fridge, do laundry.
And still have time left over to take a shower and put on something besides yoga pants.
Yee fuckin' haw.
If you don't fully appreciate my use of this copious and valuable free time, let me explain. While I don't have an income earning job, I do have the Sisephyean task of trying to keep our lives as a co-inhabitants of the same house going in a forward, relatively clean, kind of organized direction. That takes up a large part of any average SAHM's day, but in The House of Bedlam where I am outnumbered three to one, it's sort of like putting a Fellini puzzle back together while on LSD. Cleaning up is one thing, but in my world a lot of tangential issues arise is all I am saying. It is never ending. Fascinating? Nope. Marginally Interesting? Not really. But someone has to do it and, based on the track record of my house mates, that person is me.
My older child, Big, loves the concept of "organized" but doesn't grasp it in practice. I discovered an entire drawer meant for nighties that is filled with scraps of paper, tape balls and pieces of string. After momentarily wondering if I should have her assessed, I stared at it for about a minute and shut the drawer. I guess it is better than finding a bag of crystal meth, right? My younger child, Little, is going through the "let's take a piece from every doll set, game and baggie full of tiny toys that Mommy spent hours meticulously separating into like groups so they can be played with and put it all together in a giant gift bag and carry it from room to room adding items as we go" phase. How mean is that? I can't even look at it. It just sits there, daring me to put it all back again, the giant Barbie head on the side of the bag smiling vacuously.
My husband, the Grand Poobah of Pandemonium, has multiple crusty old duffel bags that reside in the closet, garage and behind the chair in the bedroom. All of them filled with old receipts, business cards,ticket stubs, dry cleaning bags, expired gift cards, hotel room keys, photos from college, leaky pens, sticky cough drops, single gray athletic socks, old phone numbers, scripts, expired medication, used toothpicks, random euros and pennies. Each is its own slightly disgusting time capsule for that particular period in his life. In the beginning, back in 1996, I tried to cull the first duffel bag of hoarding magnificence and was accused of trying to throw away valuable and irreplaceable "memorabilia". I stopped. Now there are nine. I am simply too afraid to move the overstuffed chair from his side of our room because the sheer volume of stuff that lives on it has nowhere to go and will inevitably end up on my side of the imaginary line that separates sanity from madness, and,well, I'd prefer not to go all Joan Crawford on him if I can help it. Plus, he works his ass off and having all of his socks paired is probably the last thing on his mind.
So here we are. One against three in the race to avoid having the premises condemned. And today was my breakaway day, where I was going to lasso the mess and bring the chaos to its knees AND exercise for an hour AND drink eight eight ounce glasses of water AND write at least fifteen hundred words. I was feeling very Robin Williams in "Dead Poets Society"-minus the poetry, the East Coast and male dominated cast- but you get the idea. Inspiration is a rare bird in these woods.....
"Ugh, Mom, I feel sick". Big, lying on the floor. No. This cannot happen. Today is the day.
No fever, maybe a little pale. She is going to school, goddammit. Today is the goddamned day.
We took two cars to school, and half way there I caught a glimpse of her sad little face in the rear view mirror. She looked sick, probably caught what I had yesterday. I did a U- turn and went back home. She is now watching "James and the Giant Peach" while I write this, not a book but something.
P.S. Her condition improved after resting at home (watching TV for a couple of hours while I brought her items she requested from the BRAT diet (bananas,rice, applesauce, toast)), and she made it to school in time for lunch. I had four and half hours left by the time I got home. No, I did none of the important things on my list, but I did donate to a friend's charity and got to some of the mundane stuff. Quasi Carpe Dimidium Diem anyone?