(This post contains true-but-slightly-gross elements involving body fluids. Don’t say I didn’t warn you. Also I do not usually call my children “it” but I would like to preserve gender neutrality throughout this tale. Thank you.)
Confession: I planned too much into my day, preparing for our travels the next afternoon. But things seemed to go fine for the first half. The big kids helped with the little kids while I made food and packed duffels.
My day went downhill when I woke abruptly from a stolen afternoon nap to the sound of thumping. I got up to rebuke the big kids for making noise while the little kids slept, and found it was a little kid making noise instead of sleeping. It was banging on its bed and pulling shreds of paint off the wall: anything works when you’re just trying to stay awake.
I made it go outside, if it wanted to make noise so badly, and there I kept it for a while. But it protested by throwing stones at my house window and peeing itself. Twice.
Another child had two poops in its pants that day. Two is not as bad as it could be – that is, as it is other days. I can potty train like a pro, but poop training is apparently way out of my element. Advice?
All three of the little kids kind of got into this stone throwing bit, since somebody started it, and began lobbing large ones at each other. And poking small ones through the front grill of the van.
One child got mysteriously quiet late afternoon and I thought I sent Big Brother to investigate, but Big Brother missed the memo, so when Mother Herself finally investigated, I found the child sucking on a soggy cloth in the upstairs hallway. The cloth turned out to be its own underwear, freshly dipped into the john and splashed about with joy for some time. I cleaned the floor (which was good, considering how long it had been since THAT happened) and the child.
I was in the downstairs restroom myself that evening when an older child came to me and said “Mommy, I found a tick on me.” Now, ticks are the one physical thing in this world that I truly fear. I took a deep breath and said “Okay, bring me a tweezers, honey, I’ll get it out.”
It said, through the bathroom door, “I already got it out myself.”
I said, “Oh DEAR, that is a grown-up’s job! What did you use?!”
“I used my fingers. I just pulled it out.”
“Oh NO! Did you smoosh it? Are you sure you got it all? Was it still moving?”
“Are you sure it was a tick?” I asked. “Maybe it was just a scab?”
“Well it had legs and it was black and crawling.”
“EEW. Okay, but it was still alive after you pulled it out?”
“Well, I can’t find it. I flicked it off my hand and it’s somewhere on the bathroom floor.”
Awesome. We never found it, but I cleaned the bathroom floor again. And that is how that went.
At bedtime, after all the children were at last settled to sleep, I came downstairs and found two neat piles of dog puke waiting for me on the linoleum floor, nicely in a row. Apparently the cat food I put out on the porch was entirely too temping, and she gorged herself. After I had forgiven her, and we were snuggling on the couch, she started pacing and retching and I got her as far as the door before we had another pile to clean up.
I was done.
I wanted my bed.
But when I went to sink into it, I found that one small child been allowed to fall asleep there, and when I went to move it tenderly to its own bed, I found that it had left me a large wet patch of pee as a present – the first time in weeks it had soiled sheets. And I mean it was through everything: comforter, sheets, mattress pad, mattress.
So I stripped my bed and scrubbed it, and got those sheets in the washing machine and lay down on the edge of the bare mattress, so furious I could not speak.
My husband said, “What do you want to do with the bed?” He was hoping for a blanket or sheet suggestion, but I was fresh out of all three: blankets, sheets, suggestions. I growled, “SLEEP IN IT.”
That is how some of my days go.
Sometimes what looks from the outside like being a superwoman is, from the inside, simply being too tired to cry, too stuck to quit, and too proud to ask for help.
(That was to make you laugh.)
I am grateful not all my days are like last Thursday. There are more of them than you’d believe. But not all. And that is how we survive.
I covet your sympathy, but more your commiseration. If you have a story to tell in return that would make our drama look normal, I’d surely appreciate it. [grin] ❤