Saturday, January 5, 2013
A Snippet of Time
BEWARE: This is the hour before dinner where everyone becomes a monstrously demanding version of themselves, and time gets quickly sucked away into the space-time-continuum. Murphy's law comes into full affect and the goings-on are not pretty...
It's been a long day.
There are 45 minutes until my hardworking husband walks in the door tired and hungry. Dishes, chores and dinner must be done quickly, quietly and efficiently. GAME ON.
In my head I envision a lovely meal, a candle in the center of the table, and five well-groomed, quiet children eating happily around it. The house is tidied up to perfection. Dad is happy. Mom is happy. We smile lovingly at each other while holding hands across the table....
The dishes are quickly being washed so I can get dinner on the stove.
THUNK! The garbage disposal has just become jammed with a small metal measuring spoon. I can't get it back out! It's impossible to remove. Seriously, it's going to live there. Possibly forever. The sink is now full of gross, standing water, which won't drain. Awesome.
At that moment my two oldest kids enter the kitchen saying how hungry they are and "When's dinner?", "What's for dinner?" and "When's dad gonna be home?" They are sent to go finish their evening chores, questions unanswered.
My hand is in the sink drain yanking the lodged metal spoon, when the five year old enters having a catastrophic melt-down over something I can't understand, simply because the screeching sound of her voice hits a nerve in my brain that, in response, totally closes off my ears. Don't worry, it's nothing serious; it's over something like not getting the color of cup she wants, or because her little brother touched her. (THE NERVE!) She is sent upstairs to take a time-out in her bed until she calms down. I hear her stomp all the way up and slam the door. I wouldn't mind having a time-out in MY bed.
I begin humming "What a friend we have in Jesus" because it's my calm-down-and-focus song.
At that moment, the two year old strolls casually into the kitchen. He's wearing no pants. There's poop on his socks. He obviously wasn't poking his sister because he was too busy disrobing.
"...All our sins and griefs to bear..."
There's poop on his socks?!? WHERE ELSE HAS HE BEEN? Poop is leaking out of his diaper down his legs onto the floor. At that same moment the eleven year old is in the garage trying to open the garage door. It's stuck and he's calling for help.
The five year old comes back down (without permission) and is re-sent back to her time out, accompanied by loud protests and more stomping, yelling and crying. She must be disciplined, but I have absolutely no energy left in my body that will allow me to haul myself up the stairs after her. Besides, I have a kid covered in poop. Everything stands in line behind poop. That's just the way it is. Take a number.
I carry the two year old to the living room floor to change him, and hear the one year old crying. Why? Because he's stuck underneath the glider rocking chair. Really, he's totally stuck! I can't help him because it's nearly impossible for me to bend over (30 weeks pregnant)...and again, I'm on the floor in the middle of dealing with the poop.
Poop covered toddler needs an emergency bath and the one year old is in desperate need of assistance. I holler for the big kids who are happy to abandon their overdue chores and lend a hand.
My nine year old rushes down to take the poopy kid up to the bath and the eleven year old gets the one year old out of self-afflicted "glider prison."
"Oh, what peace we often forfeit, Oh what needless pain we bear..."
After the one year old is rescued, he toddles off to the office where he climbs up onto the computer desk, dances a jig on the computer keyboard and flings compact disks across the room like Frisbees. Yeah, it's his favorite pastime. It may one day become an Olympic event, right up there with "Trampoline Cage Fighting" and "Puddle Jumping." He'll win the gold. You've made us proud, son. (Sniffle.)
The phone rings.
Forget about it.
Not a chance.
I find my way off the floor, (getting up off the floor takes a delicate balance of strength and agility of which I have neither) and eventually make it down the hallway to dispose of the diaper-bomb and wash my hands.
That'd be the one year old, now pant-less himself repeating the poop escapade his brother just did. Still flinging compact Frisbees. Thankfully he was off the desk before the poop came.
"Are we weak and heavy-laden, Cumbered with a load of care?..."
After he's cleaned, I waddle over to a chair and ease my awkward body down for a moment of "rest." I totally forgot about dinner. I guess tonight I'll be ordering Papa Murphy's Pizza. Oh, and using paper plates.
"In His arms He’ll take and shield thee, Thou wilt find a solace there."
Mike calls to say he'll be home late and bless his soul, he's willing to pick up the pizza. What a guy!
There's nothing unusual about this story. This is everyday life. It all gets varied from one day to another, but it's all basically the same. Just add in a broken furnace and water heater, or a broken car or an illness from time to time. I can make no illusions about "perfection" or pretend that everything runs smoothly every single day. This is reality, and as far as I'm concerned, I find reality far more amusing. You can't make this stuff up, folks.
And I wouldn't trade my life for anything.
Poop and all.