Recently, I was at the grocery store (because hello, where else do I go with three kids in tow? Nowhere, duh), and I was in line to pay. While Carl and Leland “helped” me load the groceries onto the belt, AKA, threw everything on there as loudly and haphazardly as possible, in an effort to garner the attention of every shopper within a fifteen foot radius, the woman behind me looked at me and smiled. She had a baby sitting in the cart, and he didn’t look like he was mobile yet, so it was safe to assume she knew nothing of what was in store for her. She said, “you’ve got your hands full. How do you do it?”
This isn’t the first time someone’s asked me this, and I kind of inwardly chuckle anytime someone does ask me that, because my first thought is, what’s the alternative? Hide somewhere and totally neglect them? They’d find me. Sometimes I think they can smell me. I mean, I shower daily, but I think they can locate me via scent, like puppies. Or my other alternative would be to start smoking meth and have CPS take custody of them, which some days seems like a good idea, except for the whole crazy meth face. Have you ever seen Faces Of Meth? Google it. It’s scary shit.
Anyway, so the lady asks me that, and I tried to think of something witty to say, but I did my best impression of Forrest Gump instead and said, “I just… do.”
In an effort to not sound like Forrest Gump anymore, I’ve decided to detail a typical day for me, from beginning to end, to show exactly how I do it. So next time someone asks me that question, I can just direct them to this blog post. How clever of me.
5:30 AM: hear rustling on the monitor from the boys’ room. Someone’s up. Shortly after that, Mallory starts moving around. Good morning. I’m up before the fucking roosters. As usual. Roll myself out of bed and sound like a bowl of Rice Krispies as every bone in my godforsaken body cracks as I start hobbling to the toilet like I’m 85 years old.
5:45: make the beds and gather the clothes for the day. Argue with Carl about what color shirt he’s going to wear to school that day. Of course, he wants the color that’s dirty. When he discovers the shirt he chose is dirty, he decides he won’t be attending school that day. Think again, little friend.
6:00: we’re downstairs. First order of business is coffee, then breakfast for the minions. Nobody can decide on what they want for breakfast. This isn’t a five star restaurant with an extensive menu, and none of you people like anything I cook, so let’s keep it simple. Sandwiches or cereal.
6:30: everyone’s eating, and by eating, I mean, pushing around whatever’s in front of them like they’ve just been served hot turd stew. I repeat “eat your food” no less than 39 times, then end up throwing away 75% of everyone’s breakfast. Cool. Hope you’re all full.
6:45: the boys ask for chocolate milk in lieu of the breakfast I just threw in the trash. My eye twitches.
7:15: after chocolate milk, it’s time to get dressed and brush teeth, which to an outsider might look like a rodeo event. After I wrangle everyone into their clothes, I brush their teeth, which usually takes 3-5 headlocks depending on how cooperative they’re being that morning.
8:30: off to school. I load the entire troop into the car and we drop Carl off. They watch Toy Story in the car on the way, and if Joan Cusack ever croaks and they need someone to voice Jessie, I am the prime candidate, because I have that entire fucking movie memorized.
9:15: get home with the younger two. Do some cleaning and complete lunch and dinner preparations while Carl’s at school, then attempt to spend quality time with them if I don’t have errands to run. Usually, Mallory just claws at my face and yanks my hair while Leland asks for snacks every ten minutes. After eating everything in the kitchen, he dumps all his toy bins out, then claims he’s “too tired” to pick them up. My brain explodes.
11:30-12:30: loading back into the car, picking up Carl, coming home for lunch. Dragging Carl out of school kicking and screaming because he “wants to eat lunch with his friends,” but they’re eating chicken and vegetables and he doesn’t eat chicken or vegetables so get in the damn car before I flip out in front of all these people at the preschool pick-up and then the nice welfare people come take you away.
1:00: lunchtime. Usually consists of leftovers or macaroni and cheese. Usually, I have liquid lunch, my second cup of coffee. You guys thought I meant alcohol when I said liquid lunch. Wishful thinking.
2:00-4:30: I attempt to do fun activities or crafts or outings with the kids. This usually blows up in my face in the form of someone gluing their fingers to their face, someone pooping their pants on the way to the park, or the baby projectile vomiting like her name is Linda Blair. We also do Carl’s homework in this window of time, which usually turns into a shitshow, during which he claims he’s “exhausted.” Yes. I can’t imagine the level of exhaustion you’re enduring after all the sitting and breathing you’ve done all day.
5:30: dinnertime. Usually, it’s a repeat of lunch, where I offer a variety of delicious, homemade options, and they opt for the blue box of Kraft Macaroni & Cheese. After dinner, it’s time for me to list all of the dessert selections. I start to feel like a slave, until they decide on the creamy and delectable Jello chocolate pudding. Good choice, masta. While they are finishing that, I stand in the kitchen and secretly shove chocolates into my mouth as fast as I possibly can.
6:00: bathtime, or as I affectionately like to call it, time for me to get totally soaked, then wrestle slippery, wiggly bodies into pajamas. I let them watch some TV until…
6:30: BEDTIME! PRAISE THE LORD AND JESUS CHRIST! HALLELUJAH!
Wow. I almost caught the Holy Ghost there. You might just see me in church on Sunday.