If I had to pick one thing I could change about my parenting skills it would be to have more patience. And to be better organized. Okay, two things.
Take this morning for example. At first my intention was to blame this morning on the cat, who adds about 8 more minutes to my finely-timed morning routine which I have down to THE MINUTE like an architect of some well-orchestrated military operation (complete with guttural yelling and copious use of the pejorative "maggot"). Upon further reflection I realize that every morning is pretty much like this and it all seems to hinge on when Tristan wakes up in the morning.
Sure, I could get an alarm clock and establish some actual ROUTINE to our routine, but why do that when I can just complain about it instead?
When Tristan wakes up in the morning he comes in and wakes me up. In the beginning this worked out really well because it was generally around 5AM which gave me time to get up, bump into the doorway a couple times, recover from stepping on Legos with my bare feet, write a little and eat cookies without anyone noticing. This also allowed me to get a shower and get ready before Julius gets up at 7AM.
Now Tristan is sleeping later so I sometimes don't get started on this whole process until closer to 6:30 (or later!) and sometimes that means Julius is up and has to motivate himself to get dressed while I'm in the shower. That rarely works out well as he's not a morning guy AT ALL. And also he refuses to wear his new shoes because they have regular laces and he doesn't like to tie his shoes. So, today for example, he wore an old pair of shoes with the toes worn out looking like someone shot through them with a pistol from the inside.
So, the poor child's day generally starts with me telling him to get dressed 343 times in 30 minutes with Tristan mimicking me which makes for a sum total of 686 times he hears that before he can escape my presence. The time I've allotted to getting my own shoes on, packing up my bag, finding my phone and keys, etc got hijacked by
That necessitates me barking orders out like a drill sergeant, "Move move move boys! Julius, get the lights. One of you grab my phone. Tristan, where's your shoes buddy? Get on the couch. Hurry hurry hurry. Julius, look for the keys." At which point Tristan starts crying for his blanket because his nice, soft mommy has gone away and been replaced by something that seems way more like the Tazmanian devil complete with flinging saliva and, today at least, coughing up persistent phlegm that might be caused by bronchitis or perhaps pneumonia.
As I whirl past, dust storms trailing me, I glance sideways at my husband who's lying in bed rolled up in a comforter like a hot and tasty man-burrito. For a moment I rethink our unspoken arrangement about him getting to sleep late in exchange for doing the majority of the housework. Then for half a second I fantasize about shooting him with a big super soaker until I realize that would also get my side of the bed wet. Then I sigh and whirl on by yelling, "GO COMMANDOS GO!" as I race back down the hallway, slip on my ugly crocs, grab my bag in one hand and the strap of Tristan's overalls in the other and exit the building with superhuman speed and strength, slamming the door behind me (which has the satisfying added bonus of waking up Rob).
The children, shell-shocked, are quiet in the backseat for once. I'm sure they are back there dreaming of a mom who lovingly strokes their faces as they wake gently from their slumber, who makes hot breakfasts, who has their color-coordinating clothes from Baby Gap and J.Crew laid out in their fabulously decorated room. As I pull up to the school I wonder how many years of therapy this will be good for.
Julius scrambles out of the car and starts to run for the door so he'll get there in time for crappy school breakfast and I yell, "Hey, Jules... try not to be too handsome!" He turns and smiles, the heart-melting dimple appears in his left cheek. He looks slightly embarrassed, but highly pleased and I hope for a small second that I've redeemed myself.
Until tomorrow when we start all over again.