There are days when I really do feel like Wonderwoman (minus the skimpy outfit, cape and nifty accessories). Today was one of those days when I managed to do all things mommy with what feels like the strength and endurance of "daddy". The daddy was yet again on 24 hrs at the hospital, and the girls and I took a trip out to lunch with family friends in Milton. My folks came along and we had such a delightful spread of food - quiche, greens, soup, bread, cheese, olives, wine, champagne. Ruby and Eloise sat like big girls at this lovely table, silently dipping their bread in soup, eating broccoli quiche and diligently munching around olive pits. They used their napkins, they toasted gently with water glasses and even managed to ask "may I be excused?". Then they skibbled off to play with their farm animals on the floor while I got to eat my fill and talk to grown ups about movies. When this type of stuff happens I'm able to recognize how important my mommy skills have been. I hate thinking of the endless days when I think I'm going to explode if I have to give another fucking "Time Out" or negotiate a sharing brawl or explain the importance of good manners and kindness. But I've learned that if I handle those crazy days well, decent child behavior and a moment for me to enjoy time with other adults will result.
After lunch we walked down the street and fed some carrots to a couple of horses, then we went back to my mom's house to relax and play. The girls ate an early dinner, got some jammies on and fell asleep while I drove home. Here's where I start to feel kinda beat: I pull the car in the driveway, take one sleeping girl out, hobble up the stairs, fumble for house keys in the dark, place girl on the couch, run back out to get the second sleeping girl, take her up to her bed and tuck her in, then head down to get the couch girl and repeat the tucking in process. I organize all the recycling, put out the trash, pick up the toys, put away the dishes and collapse on the couch with the clicker. Pickle starts bonking around in my stomach and I am reminded that I'm pregnant - and lonely. Although I'm excited to have the bed to myself on nights like these, I can't say I dig having the girls come in my room about 2 times (four total) each. I just end up shuttling them back to their beds, but FUCK that's tiring. I feel like I don't really sleep. And the house seems so empty with just the three of us snoozing in it. (So, to the real single moms out there, you are some serious superheros.)
Most days DON'T go smoothly for moms. We are under-rested, rushed, emotional and fairly unrecognized or appreciated for our efforts. Our job is never over. (I feel like I've seen a corny needlepoint that reads, "A mother's work is never done" and I call that phrase up in my mind whenever I do a load of laundry or put away the dishes.)
So how do I manage my life? What keeps me going? Well, I guess it's days like today. They are my long overdue paychecks.
Now back to watching the Oscars...