My alarm went off at 6:15 this morning, but I was already awake. Lowell woke up at 5:15 when Scott got up for work, and never went back to sleep. I started today with a major sleep deficit, and that never makes for an easy time. I know this.
The night before, I swear, I tried to go to bed early, but I needed a long, hot bath. My muscles are aching constantly these days from the sheer physical act of taking care of a baby. I think all 6 week postpartum checkups should end with prescriptions for a full-body massage.
And then Lowell woke up more than he usually does, thus needing his diaper changed in the middle of the night, and all those minutes up with him added up to a night of no good sleep.
We got Kendall to school before the first bell rang at the disgustingly early time of 7:20 am. Meaning I managed to get Kendall dressed and his bag packed, then Leyna and Lowell tucked into the stroller for the brisk walk. Score one for the exhausted mother.
But then the rest of the day looked like this.
We were all tired and cranky. We spent much of the morning in our bed, Lowell nursing and dozing, but only happy if he was physically touching me WHILE in the laying down position. Leyna watched Lalaloopsy on repeat. I gave no fucks.
I gave up any hope I had of getting anything done today by the time 8:30 rolled around. I didn’t even bother cracking open my new planner -the one I spent so much money on it either better change my life or fold laundry for me. I spent a good 3 hours filling it in last week.
From ErinCondren.com, in case you’re wondering.
By the time we were to leave and pick up Kendall in time for his 2:30 dismissal, Leyna was finally napping in her room, and I had sopping wet hair from the shower I managed to squeeze in while Lowell screamed at me from the bouncy seat.
Sorry, dude. The amount of oil oozing from my hair is unacceptable at this point. Have a good cry. It will be good for your lungs… or something.
I had no choice but to push that double stroller while I ran to school. I got there at 2:33. Kids were already trickling out of the building. I carefully watched the ones that passed me to be sure Kendall wasn’t among them.
I stood in the place I always do when I pick him up, and looked around me. My eyes were squinting in the sunlight, my head spinning, my ears listening for his familiar tone and inflection. It was probably 5 minutes. It seemed like an hour.
He wasn’t there. All the kids dissipated, and he wasn’t there.
I walked to where the other kids wait for the car line. They probably put him in the wrong group.
Except they didn’t.
My heart started pounding. Had he walked past me and I didn’t see him? He didn’t see me? Did he go home with a friend? He wouldn’t have. Surely. He would have waited. I was just a few minutes late. Dammit, I shouldn’t have been late. I should have never taken that fucking shower.
I grabbed a teacher and asked her to help. She quickly disappeared inside the school. I kept scanning the sidewalk that lead back to our street. Maybe I should run that way and see if he’s walking home by himself. I had to have missed him. I think he knows his way home.
God, please let him find his way home.
Just as I was about to take off, the teacher came back through the doors. No sense of urgency. I was a little annoyed at how casually she walked back to me. Had she found him? Was he in the nurse’s office? Did he have to go to the principal’s office?
“Your son’s teacher said you sent a note saying he was to go to the after school football program today. He’s out back. He gets out at 3:40,” she said with a gentle smile. The kind of smile that, if it had arms, would reach out and pat me on the head and say, “There, there, you obviously delirious poor thing.”
“OH! Right! That is a thing he is doing now. You are right,” I nodded, while the visions of the carefully filled in week in my fancy new planner flashed before me. Had I bothered to open the damn thing at any point before picking him up, I would have known that.
Before you all start commenting about how this and that app and digital calendar work for you, let me just stop and say that NONE OF IT WORKS FOR ME. I have tried it all. I can push ignore on an iPhone alert so fast, I never even realize it came through. Or I can see it, and then forget it a second later. I do have hopes of the paper planner eventually working (again, because this is the only system that has ever worked for me in my life). I just have to get in the habit of using it. And taking it everywhere with me and treating it like a small toddler, never taking my eyes off of it.
It has to work. THIS has to work because this whole having a kid in for-real-school 5 days a week is kicking my ass so hard, you guys. But that is an entirely different blog post that I can’t even begin to get into if I ever want to get sleep tonight.
At 10:45 pm tonight, I managed to escape. Lowell finally fell asleep at 10:30, and Scott wrapped up a home-repair that was apparently so urgent it couldn’t wait until tomorrow so I could have some time to work tonight. Something about a broken water line and do I want to be able to flush the toilets for the next 24 hours?
I hoped into the car, cranked the radio, blasted Eminem’s Berzerk, and treated myself to Sonic.
And it was good.
Tomorrow is a new day. I’m going to bed with my planner by my side, and a mighty dose of self-forgiveness. And lower expectations. Much, much lower expectations.