Its 5:00 am and one of my twins Izzy is patting my face with her blankie in hand, “mama baba”!! I stagger out of bed, scoop her up with a kiss and carry her to the kitchen to heat a bottle, unable to see through my sleepy eyes. I put her back to bed and hit my pillow.
I’ve barely made it back to a half-assed sleep when at 6:15am Mira does the same thing. By then it’s time to get up anyway. I stagger back to the kitchen to brew my coffee, which god knows I can’t see without. I hop in the shower coffee in hand, start 2 loads of laundry, pick up the house a little, pound a protein shake and get dressed, make-up can wait till I get to work.
At 7:00 AM all hell breaks loose as the kids wake up. They are either happy and loud, or fussy and really loud. The noise level instantly goes from “Namaste
” at yoga class, to “It’s a small world” at Disneyland
, in a matter of minutes. I set everyone down, scramble some eggs, heat some sausage, pour some “dip-dip” (ketch-up), and juice. All of which ends up in hair, clothes and the floor. I rush around cleaning and changing them one by one. I pack their lunches, gym bags, hand-bags and diaper bags. My arms are already loaded and aching as I hoist the girls up and carry them (35lbs each) one on each hip with the gear, down stairs out to the parking lot.
I’m a sight, nearly dropping it all as I reach the car. When I finally sit to start the car, my hair is a wreck, my black work clothes have ketch-up and yogurt hand prints, and I’m breaking a sweat! My son is desperately trying to get my attention, but everyone’s talking and fussing at once, fighting over “who’s song” I’m gonna play. Izzy usually wins with TI’s “Whatever You Like” (edited version, thank you!) and they all start bobbin their heads.
I drop the girls off at daycare first, packing their gear in, getting them adjusted to being left. Then I get a second of quiet with Kanen as we drive to daycare, stop for a cup of coffee so we can connect. Then I’m off to work running late.
I get to work and stress about all the work shit that is constant in a corporate sales job. I worry I won’t make my number and I’ll be fired. If I’m fired my kids won’t have food to eat, that quick. If god forbid one of the kids gets sick and needs to be picked up at daycare I have no choice but to cancel my day at work and go get them. I try every day to sneak out for an hour to go to the gym and get a work out in, if I don’t there is no other place I can fit it in my day.
Then I rush home after work, to scoop them up. Their hungry, fussy and tired. I unload the car, put them back on each hip, and head all the way back up the stairs to my apartment. I’m in my work clothes and stilettos, trying not to topple over.
I make dinner as quick as I can, everyone is loud and I have a splitting headache. I haven’t eaten all day, with the exception of my gulped protein shake at 6:30 this morning. I just wish the noise could come down a notch and my son would stop making the twins cry.
Dinner is a disaster! The girls have applied most of it to the ground or the walls, and any remaining morsel is covering their little bodies. I have no time to eat, I’m getting cranky as hell. I pound yet another protein shake, hoping it will stop the jitters, take the fatigue down a notch, and ideally make me not want to extract my teeth with a bottle opener.
I strip the girls down and take them in for a bath, put a movie on for Kanen, tell him I’ll spend some quality time with him when the girls go to sleep.
After bath, I take them both out to dry but only have two hands. As a result of this unfortunate lack of planning on God’s part, I can only get one diapered and dressed at a time. The other one has decided she can’t wait, and has crapped on the rug. I put the clean one in the crib so I can clean up the mess, but she gets out to investigate anyway. They both now have shit covering their legs and hands, realizing this they begin to panic, wiping it off on my shirt. I try to clean them and their handiwork up at the same time, biting my lip to hold back the tears that sting my eyes and the overwhelming sense of I CANT FUCKING DO THIS!
When that’s finally done, and Izzy is changed and ready for bed, I go to the living room where Mira has gotten into my makeup bag and is putting lipstick all over herself and the white carpet. Really? I snatch my make-up bag and the contents of my purse off the ground, scoop her up and back to the bathroom we go. I hurry scrubbing her little cheeks till they are more red from the washcloth then the destroyed tube of Mac’s latest matte red. But I’m too slow and Izzy has opened the dishwasher and is breaking the wine glassed with a butter knife…just happily slicing the stems off with the innocent glee and delight only a 2 year old could pull off. Dammit maybe that’s my problem…she’s just barely 2!
No! Nooo! Nooooooo!!!!
This is probably the only word my children think I know.
So I’m busy getting that cleaned up, making sure there is no remaining glass on the floor, that I miss the fact that they are already busy in Kanen’s toy room and have turned over a 5lb bucket of micro logos and are watching them fly across the room. When I come to scold them, they both cover their eyes with their chubby little hands as if they can’t see me, I can’t see them…
It’s impossible to be angry with them, because they are just curious and not malicious in their quest for trouble.
I can’t take it anymore.
Our 2 bedroom shoe-box apartment’s walls are closing in on my science fiction style. It’s time to head to the park, let them run around a bit, burn off some of this energy and redirect their boredom.
I change them back into street clothes (it’s 7:00 pm). I get them up to the park and all 3 go in separate directions, I try to stand in the middle where as needed I can sprint to grab one from launching off the big-kid slide or grabbing the other one from taking a header off the monkey bars. It’s visually interesting for all the other parents and they make comments watching me leap from spot to spot, still in my shit covered work clothes and heels.
When we leave I’m beyond exhausted.
I fantasize about a life long ago when I used to take bubble baths and drink red wine.
But I’ve promised ice-cream as a reward for their good behavior at the park, and I hand each of them a cone. When I pull in the drive I look at the twins who are covered. Their seats are covered, their blankets are covered, the windows and leather seats…covered. I try to mop them up with wipes, enough to at least carry them and the gear back up to the house.
Finally by the grace of god it’s bed time.
I’ve rewashed them.
Sung their song.
Rubbed tummies, and said prayers.
They are in bed.
I close the door and breathe for exactly one second. For the next hour the twins get out of their cribs, waddle into the living room, blankies in hand, wanting a “smoochie”, or to see what we are doing, or to say goodnight…I put them back, again and again. They finally start to crying in earnest even they are getting sick of this game and realize it’s time to raise the stakes, now they want a new song and tummy rub.
Poor Kanen my little 6 year old angle sits in the dining room waiting for me to join him in the promised game of UNO
. He kicks my butt, best 5 out of 7 games, my eyes are closing and my feet ache. I get him ready for bed, read a story, sing the song I’ve sung him every night of his life; Hush Little Baby. I rub his back, ask him how his day was and we both say prayers.
It’s almost 9:30 PM, and I way over shot the goal of everyone asleep by 8:00. I feel defeated and exhausted. But the house is finally quiet, though thoroughly destroyed.
I grab a glass of wine, and sit for just a second…But the place looks like it was hit by an ill-named tropical storm and will take at least an hour to clean. The laundry and dishes still need to be done, lunches and bags packed for tomorrow.
By now it’s 10:30 PM and I have time to check my work email, do some research, vet our new software site and plan for my day at the office tomorrow.
Thank god for wine!
At 11:30 I’m finally ready to try and sleep. Why is it that when you need sleep the most it evades you like OJ did the police…so annoying.