The span of my morning will end at noon with me either finishing up a conference call or jumping in the shower. My day began at 5:10 a.m. I ate my breakfast, talked to God for a while, checked in on the news and Twitter and Facebook and email…like you do. At 6:30 a.m., my mom work begins. I put the toast in the toaster, fix chocolate milk, 4 scoops with a lid and a straw as per 10 year-old son’s instructions. No butter on his toast, yes, butter on my 7 year old daughter’s toast. We are supposed to be walking out of the door at 7:20 a.m. to the car to drive to school.
6:47 a.m. I go upstairs and wake up my son with a “Dude – it’s 6:47 a.m. Time to get up.” All goes well. Clothes are out, ready to be put on because that’s the new rule. Clothes on before electronics of any kind. Toast – check. Chocolate milk – check.
6:52 a.m. I start the arduous and delicate operation of waking up my daughter. I have to use my soft, sing-songy, pleasant mommy voice even though I know already that we are going to be later than usual for school, which means no “Active Start” for my kids. “Hey, sweetie, it’s 6:52. We need to get going to school this morning. I’ve put your clothes out so you can put them on before you do the computer.”
Worst mistake ever.
Still sleepy-headed daughter walks in and finds her brother already watching some Minecraft video on YouTube on our only computer.
(Announcer voice) Let the meltdown of epic proportions BEGIN!
“You said I could play on the computer!” she wails as she throws herself onto her bed. “You never let me play on the computer. He always gets to play. You never let me. YOU HATE ME so I. HATE. YOU!”, she screams. At this point, I’m still trying to get lunches packed, myself dressed for the gym, grocery bags set out to get groceries after the gym and water bottles filled.
I spend the better part of the next 12 minutes trying to talk with my daughter so that she’ll calm down and still get them out the door in a reasonable amount of time. Finally, and I mean, finally – the “Worst Mom Ever” manages to get both kids, with lunches, water bottles and backpacks, out the door and into the car – except my daughter has her toast with her, too. It’s 7:43 a.m. School starts at 8:05.
My son cannot stand to hear his sister eat. While I agreed with him when she was younger, now it’s more of a fighting point. We’re driving out of the driveway and he’s already complaining, loudly. My daughter isn’t holding her toast plate and everything keeps shifting as I make the turns (possibly a bit faster than normal…). He’s covering his ears, she’s alternating eating and screaming at him to stop it. He starts kicking her backpack. She starts hitting him – so, he hits her back.
And then…because there’s always an “And then”…there’s a wreck at the ONE intersection that can take us to school by the way I drove. My alternative now is to drive halfway back to our house and cut up the back road, all the while my kids have escalated to WWIII in the back and I’m screaming “Just eat your [argle bargle, grr, gargh, aaaaahhh] toast!”
Finally, we make it to the school area. The car dropoff line is ridiculously long, so the kids hop out and walk the rest of the way – like 500 feet. It’s all I can do to keep my speed at 20 mph. I get to the Y, kill myself with Body Pump and hop into the car to drive to the grocery store when I realize – the list is at home.
So, here I sit, regaling you of the story of my morning. I’ll go to the grocery store this afternoon after I do my conference call and maybe grab a shower.
So – when you see a crazy-eyed maniacal mother in the grocery store one morning, just know – her daughter may not have eaten her toast.