Almost reads like a diary entry in 1999 -except with kids.
Matt’s out of town, but I’ve got a pretty decent routine down. You wouldn’t think so based on the fact that yesterday I texted a friend saying that I have a building anxiety attack and I haven’t had one of those in years and OMG WHY IS THIS HAPPENING WHEN MATT’S OUT OF TOWN?
It happened about 10 minutes before the kids got off the bus, and Audrey was still sleeping, I had to walk around the house and try to eat something because I knew it was mostly because I hadn’t eaten enough for how much I had worked out that day. (Trust me, I know I need to eat more, I just forget to, or don’t feel hungry, and I’ve been lectured so many times before that it’s all white noise at this point. But I promise you, I ate all of my peanut butter toast with bananas.)
I was always told to write it out, so here I go. My routine and why it’s not as crazy as I think it is in my head.
At night, on days when I use a pre-workout during the day, I take my delicious strawberry flavored melatonin about 20 minutes before I want to sleep. I answer last minute emails, watch some cat videos, set Pandora on my sleepy station for 60 minutes, and then drift off to sleep at a solid 9 pm. I have my alarm set for 6:15, in a sad attempt to wake up before the kids, but who knew I birthed morning people? Maelie, whom I’ve dubbed Pop Tart, wakes up all happy and chatty, and I can’t even at that point, but I get out of bed, and wash my face, brush my teeth, put on a bra and shlep downstairs where 3/4 of my kids are already out of bed and getting their breakfast ready. Cereal, cottage cheese, yogurt, a gallon of milk, all splayed out on the counter, I take their lunchboxes out from the freezer and start assembling their lunches. (I got them these really neat ones that have ice packs built into the lining of the lunchbox.) Kiwi, cheese sticks, peanuts, hummus, pretzels, hard boiled eggs, all go into their own compartment in the bento box. The kids unload the dishwasher while I load up their backpacks. Luca gets Alfred ready to run while I braid the girls’ hair.
By this time it’s 7:15, and they ask to play outside, which yay, go! And I clean up the kitchen and make my breakfast – a green smoothie, because the thought of eating solid food in the morning is a no go for me. We walk up the street to the bus stop where all the kids are full of this insane amount of energy, and play a game of tag while I drink my smoothie and BS with the other parents. The bus comes, the kids get on, and all of a sudden I’m left with this odd sense of relief, yet the quiet is unsettling. Audrey stands there, sucking her thumb and doesn’t say much.
We walk back to the house and Audrey gets in the jogging stroller as I get the dogs on their leashes so we can go out for a walk.
It’s amazing to me how fast people think is okay to drive in a housing plan. I stare the drivers down, making sure to make eye contact, so they know that I see what they’re doing, while silently judging them for nearly running over my dog – again.
If it’s a Thursday, we have the mornings to ourselves. If it’s any other morning, we pack up and head off to a gym so I can teach. On Tuesdays we stop at the library to pick up whatever book is on hold for me, and to grab the latest graphic novels they got in for Luca and the girls. Lately it’s been Adventure Time and LoudBoy.
After lunch, and nap time comes, I think about all the things I could be doing in that time, but my brain is done, so instead I either take a bath or watch a movie on Netflix, or take a bath while watching Netflix and then rush around before the kids get off the bus to make sure I won’t freak out when the house suddenly becomes incredibly chaotic.
Tonight for example, I need to make sure that the kids eat dinner before we go to the gym. Usually on Thursdays, Matt picks the kids up from the gym daycare, but he’s out of town, so they will have to stay until 7:30, when I’m done teaching. Typically they’re in bed at 7:30, so unless I plan ahead, it turns into a terrible time. Eat dinner, pack a snack, go to the gym, get home, push them off to bed so I can do it all over again in the morning.
There are times, like yesterday, when I feel so overwhelmed. No matter how much I can plan and prepare, it all catches up, and I realize that I’m basically in the middle of the ocean without a life jacket. Then there are times where I have a minute to myself and I think, yah man, you’ve got a really good thing going on. I guess it’s all about taking the highs with the lows.
I mean, four kids create a ridiculous amount of stress, but they unload the dishwasher for me and get their own breakfasts. Two dogs chasing me around the house wondering why they’re not priority one is super annoying, especially when they’re constantly underfoot, but after the walk, they’re happy and immediately into lazy mode and crash on the couch. Well, that’s after they get their morning supplements – fish oil and turmeric with peanut butter or cheese – and sometimes Lucy likes to stare at me and whimper because I didn’t pet her long enough, but she usually takes the hint and lays down. On my feet. And yes, I could probably not teach a class that runs so late, or only teach one and not two, but I absolutely love what I do, love where I teach, and love the people who take the classes. I deserve to be happy, too. So the kids will have to deal for a day.
We all have to learn to adapt.
I also need to relax.
Which I will, after Matt gets home.