Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Five Universal Laws of Mornings

What is it about the morning routine? Why can't we get through one measly cup of coffee and *possibly* the gossip section of the paper before the Giant Clusterf**k of Whacktacularness washes over MommyLand, turning our mornings from a Norman Rockwell stroll to school into a Norman Bates "what have you done??" stabbiness that sends us peeling rubber out of the school parking lot.

Rule #1: The Decibel Factor

Why is it no matter how much I plan ahead, pack lunches the night before, and have your clothes out and backpacks in the car, I still wind up screaming you guys stupid. Every furkin' morning. Please. It's a simple list of five things: eat, brush, dress, bed,and stuff. Just do those things and Mommy won't lose her schmidt. Problem is, the more I yell, the less this crap gets done. Why? Because now we're wiping noses and drying tears and making last-minute bowls of cereal because we burned the eggs because we were busy yelling.

Rule #2: The "I Forgot" Clause
It's now April. We have been going to school for EIGHT FREAKIN' MONTHS. Why are you still looking at me like Long Duck Dong when we ask you "where is your backpack?" It's not in a big lake. It's hanging on the peg in your bedroom. Right where I hung it last night when I found it on the driveway. And now we're at school and you're saying "AUTOMOBILE??" and my eye is starting to twitch.

Rule #3: The Entropy Effect
Why? Why is there always a mess? Either there's a bowl of cereal dripping down my dining room table, or a spilled carton of orange juice slowly seeping into that teensy space between the counter and the refrigerator where magnets apparently go to die, or you've changed clothes so many times that your bureau thought it was auditioning for The Exorcist and Linda Blair-ed all over your bedroom. The other day we all got out the door with the kitchen and bedrooms intact, and I came home to find the dog had made a lovely buffet of used kitty litter, a dead mouse (or was hard to tell), regurgitated toilet water and a box of Maxi pads. My house now smells like the inside of a shoe.

Rule #4: The Daddy Variable
You need to get out of my house. Immediately. And stop
looking at me like that or you're getting a lap full of tea.

Dear My Spouse, You need to be gone by the time the children wake up. We'd both like to think that you could be helpful in situations such as these. And you -- you dear, sweet, kind, clueless man -- actually do believe you are being helpful.You're helpful in the way that speed bumps are helpful, and that's in ruining my speedy transmission. You just slow everything down. Rather than being the guy who finds and places the missing shoes on the barefoot child, you're really just the fourth voice outside the bathroom door asking me where said shoes are when I'm trying to hurry up and poo. Do us both a favor. Leave. And leave a nice big pot of coffee for me when you go. Chances are, you do that, there's a good chance you can get a peek under the hood tonight.

Rule #5:  The Time/Appearance Dichotomy
I showed up at school once with a fork in my hair, a t-shirt that said "I love it In&Out" on it, and a pair of stilettos. It didn't matter that  that the fork was actually an improvement over my forkless hair. Or that the t-shirt was for a chain of hamburger restaurants. Or that the shoes were the closest ones to the front door. All that mattered was that, for the twenty-seven people who saw me that morning, I was a deranged hooker who had just gotten off work and was desperately trying to feed the disembodied Lord Voldemort in the back of my head.

All I need is eleven uninterrupted minutes. To do those five little things - eat, brush, dress, bed and stuff - and we're good for the day. And you get off to school happy and fed and with matching shoes. And I get three-to-seven blissful hours where I am Perfect Mommy. A trait that can only be achieved when you, my children, are not here.

Until then, I'll be contemplating how to get that fork out of my hair. A big pot of cold coffee outta help.

(c)Herding Turtles, Inc. 2009 - 2011

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