I should be in bed.  Hours ago.  Today was a long day.  I had gooey visions of my last day of maternity leave. I would bake.  Or at least I would get a lot of good cuddle time, good play time, and sunny smiles with my little peanuts.  Instead, I was feverish and sick.  And exhausted.  Not a good day for my patience-reserves to be low.  Mr. Pickle Pumpkin was up with a cold, cough and fever last night.  So I was up too.  He was exhausted all day, but was so far beyond tired that he couldn’t nap after a short snooze on the couch this morning.  My sweet, though stubborn, little boy was a disaster.  A willful, biting, flailing, hyper, flinging food disaster.  All day.

And Miss Plum? She was better than her brother.  And is really a pretty good little doodle.  Except she didn’t feel like napping today either.  Even though I was feeling rough, I decided a walk would brighten everyone’s day.  Plum wailed the whole time.  I decided a brief trip to see Grandpa would make the day better. Plum wailed the whole time.

What is that “Thud! Thud! Thud!” you hear?  That is me. Banging my head against the wall.  I searched my bathroom cabinet for some Calgon to take me away.  Alas, none to be had.

So I’m back to work tomorrow.  Nerves frayed.  Sick.  Tired.  And I have no idea where my non-maternity work clothes are.  Or even if they’ll fit.  Blargh.  And I’m returning to an office that has undergone major changes in the last twelve weeks. And people there are sad and scared.  I don’t know how this new schedule is going to work – how we’re going to make it all work.  But we will.  And after all this whining, I will choose gratitude over annoyance. And sleep over blogging.

Good night.


Just One Day…

I may get a day – or at least a big chunk of hours – to myself on Monday.  I will guiltily drop Mr. Pickle Pumpkin at daycare and do a few things for me.  Maybe.  Probably. Hopefully.  In reality, I will probably go into work to get some things accomplished before my impending maternity leave – that will reduce my stress level the most. But the dream of a few hours of leave got me thinking… what would I do, if I had the day to myself?

Day To Myself – The Fantasy

1. Wake up peacefully after a long uninterrupted sleep.  No alarm, no toddler screeching “Mama” in his best death metal voice (seriously, how did he learn to do that?).

2. Have a full cup of tea. While it is still hot.  Check my e-mail.  And anything else I’d like to check online.  Slowly.  While watching “Good Morning America”.

3. Take a very hot shower.  Slowly.  Use face wash, body wash, shampoo, and conditioner. Exfoliate AND shave. Slather on my expensive, lovely, perfect body cream when done.  Put on a robe. Lounge for a few minutes.  Do my hair. Put on makeup.  Get dressed.

4. Drop off my shoes (needing new stitching) at the cobbler, and my coats (covered in toddler yick) at the dry cleaner. Then go to the local bakery, and enjoy a scone and the newspaper.

5. Take a stroll around the downtown.  Peek in some shops.  Perhaps pick up some fun new item at the gourmet shop, and definitely get some stinky delicious cheese to enjoy later.

6. Mani/pedi and facial.  Throw in a massage for good measure.

7. Stop in for a late lunch/appetizer – maybe something with beets, or calamari – and a fruity mocktail somewhere hip, posh and perfect.  Sit at the bar, nosh, and read a trashy magazine about the Teen Moms.

8. Quick trip to the department store to pick up a new purse, since I really really need a new one.  One that isn’t also a diaper bag.

9. Stop by the cell phone store and upgrade.  It’s time for my phone to go from dumb to smart.

10. Trip to the stationery store to browse cotton-y soft letterpress, and clever cards.  Order some new, personalized stationery while I’m there.

11. Pick up dry cleaning and shoes.  Go home and marvel at my sparkling house – thank heavens for house cleaners!

12. Nap.  On clean, crisp sheets.  In the sun. For as long as I need/want.

13. Go see a critically acclaimed movie at our fabulous local theater.

14. Return home, refreshed to my husband (who has picked up Mexican take-out!) and my dear little boy.

Day to Myself – The Reality

1. Thanks to my cranking pregnancy kidneys, wake up to pee at midnight, 2am, 3am, 4:30am and then toss and turn until just finally getting out of bed at 5:30.

2. Realize I have no tea left.  Settle for a K-cup I’ve avoided drinking.  Check my e-mail, and decide to pay bills and revisit our finances.  At 6am.  Panic.  Waddle downstairs to put some laundry in.

3. Take a shower.  Attempt to shave my legs. Give up.  Belly is too big.  Settle for armpits, and call it a win.  Forget to exfoliate.  Cut shower short, since washing machine is sucking up all the hot water. Decide to save luxurious moisturizer for another day, since I can’t reach all my dry parts anyway.  Brush my hair, consider that good enough – who am I going to see anyway?

4. Figure out I need cash for the cobbler, dry cleaner and bakery.  Go to the most convenient ATM, which is not my bank, and pay $4.50 in fees.  Revisit finances panic from earlier in morning.  Promise myself not to be so dumb in the future. Decide not to spend the money on coat cleaning after all – hey, I can’t see the toddler yick, it is on my back and shoulders.

5. Stroll the downtown at a waddling snail’s pace.  Exhausted, decide to turn around before I reach the gourmet shop – it’s just too dang far.  And I’m not supposed to eat stinky cheese anyway.

6. Cancel the manicure, massage and facial (finances, you know! Must be responsible!)  Get the pedicure anyway, convincing myself that it is a medical expense.

7. Run into an old boss and an old boyfriend.  Wish I had done my hair, put on some mascara and didn’t have toddler yick all over my coat.

8. Stop back at home for a second to switch loads of laundry.  Decide I’m starving, forgo posh lunch, and eat leftover Annie’s Mac & Cheese out of the container while standing by the fridge.

9. Do just a few of the dishes, which leads me to notice that something has been dripping off of the counter and onto my white cabinets, which leads me to cleaning them, and then the floor, and then the stove.

10. Congratulate myself on all the money I’ve saved – no  housekeeper, no dry cleaning, no new phone, no stationery, no new purse!

11. Lament my dirty house (except the kitchen cabinets!), dirty coat, and lack of phone, stationery and purse.

12. Nap.  With a cat on my head. On an unmade bed.  Since my sheets are in the dryer.  Drool all over my un-pillowcased pillow.

13. Sleep through the movie start time.  Flip channels instead.  Get annoyed at Nate Berkus.  Check bank account hoping for some magical windfall.  Find none.

14. Get a call from daycare – Mr. Pickle Pumpkin has pink eye?  Sweet.  Pick him up early.  Call doctors.  Call work and tell them I won’t be in tomorrow.  Call husband, give him status update.  Attempt to feed Mr. Pickle mac & cheese for dinner, realize I ate it. Settle for toaster pizzas, which give me heartburn.  Welcome a late-arriving husband home from work.  Go to bed, knowing that I will be up again to pee in 90 minutes.  The end.

I Just Want a Dang Haircut

You know that stomach bug from a while back?  Yeah, it is still rearing its ugly head.  Thankfully, my household is well, however it has taken a firm hold of my mother who has since developed diverticulitis, which has developed into an abscess on her colon.  She needs surgery.  Probably this week.

I’ll admit, I feel bad.  I feel bad, not just because she’s sick, and needs surgery and that is scary, but because I’m a little too tough and suggested she “suck it up” or “walk it off” a few times too many.  Although I didn’t use those terms exactly.  But I am not nice enough when it comes to that kind of thing.

I also feel bad, literally, because I ate a McDonald’s hash brown this morning.  What a terrible idea.  I’m blaming pregnancy cravings, and need no convincing to never eat one of those things again.  They aren’t good.  They are barely edible.  And one big lump of greasy potatoes is now lingering in my stomach and making me nauseous.  Lovely.

Warning: major whiner alert.

I also feel bad because I feel selfish.  While I want my mom to be healthy and well, it is hard for me stop thinking about the wrenches this has thrown into my life and schedule.  Work is crazy; I’m revving up for maternity leave, and the rest of my workload hasn’t stopped (did I get a 21 item to-do list today from a boss?  I did.)  Tax season is hard when you’re married to a CPA.  Tax season is harder when you’re married to a CPA, have a toddler to wrangle and work full time.  Tax season is even harder when you’re married to a CPA, have a toddler to wrangle, work full time and are 9 months pregnant.  So yeah.  The wrench of a parental surgery is hard too.  Especially since Mom is scheduled to provide some childcare in the next few weeks and when baby arrives.  Thankfully, we have other family around – and they are helpful and awesome.  Thankfully, the surgery will be pretty minor.  Thankfully, I am not due to pop for 4 weeks (though Mr. Pickle Pumpkin was born at 37+ weeks, so…).  Thankfully, daycare is flexible, and he can drop in if we need him to.  I’ll admit, in the grand scheme of things, the wrench is small, and the thankfulness is large.

But today is Monday, perspective comes a little harder, and I just had to cancel the 2 things I was really looking forward to before baby arrives and I become a sleep-deprived human milk machine for the next few months – a haircut and a pedicure.  And – adding insult to injury – I have gift certificates for both.  Somehow I felt like labor and delivery would be a little better if I could look down into those stirrups and see pretty pink toes peeking back.  And fitting in mama haircuts has become a near impossibility.  I’m not looking like a featured photo on “People of Walmart” yet, but it is getting close.

So… today’s goals?

– Allow myself a bit of frustration and stress

– Buy some clips or ponytail holders or something to tame the madness

– Go eat some Tums and drink a cup of peppermint tea.  Urg.

– Cross at least 7 items off of my to-do list

– Keep some perspective

Moses supposes his toes's are roses...