My Fresh Hell
Life in Scribbletown.

Thank God It's Monday

2006-03-20

Thank Jeebus it's Monday! I am at my desk, surrounded by the susurrus of heat blowing through the air vents, the muted traffic outside, the clicking of the keyboard. I am at work and all is well.

Weekends have become an ungodly marathon. You know, I think extroverts do much better at this multiple-children-in-the-house thing than us introverts. I absolutely need a bit of time every day to get away from people in order to make it through the day. This weekend? I did not get a moment's rest and I'm exhausted. And, I had a cold. So did Red. So did Dusty.

There were a few moments of pleasure, though. There was much music and dancing. Here is a sampling of what Red and Dusty got down to with their funky selves:

CHARLES EARLAND: Black Talk
VILA SESAMO a Brazilian version of Sesame Street
Bo Diddley Red especially enjoyed dancing and shrieking to "Hush Your Mouth" though she entirely missed the irony.
Howling Wolf
10cc: Sheet Music
Mozart: George Szell's Completely Mozart, The Cleveland Orchestra (or something)

The rest of the weekend was spent wiping noses. Mine and Red's. Dusty's able to tend to her own these days. Small favors.

Red's reached a pinnacle of Toddler Frustration in Daily Living. The cold was only a minor inconvenience in terms her need to whine, fuss, scream, and cling every other second. There was barely a moment where I was allowed to sit down on something the sofa, a chair, the floor, the toilet. Somebody needed something and apparently I was the only one that could do it. Red just mainly wanted to be held. By me. And that girl is heavy. My poor carpel-tunneled wrists can't take it anymore. Carrying her made it impossible to do anything else. Like make lunch for others, mind you, never mind myself. Or laundry (which still got done amid the sounds of Woeful Child Utterances), or breathing or peeing or fuck you get my point, I'm sure.

I'm not sure what this child's deal is apart from just her need to be close to the mother kangaroo. I do understand that need. I'm just not always able to fulfill it 24/7. Things need doing. And, it's not as if my husband was sitting around on his ass doing nothing. He was busy with trash duty, sawing up logs duty (wow we're such homesteaders these days!), playing with and appeasing Dusty duty. Because Red wanted MOMMY. I don't know what this poor child is going to do when I go to California for a week. I don't know what my husband is going to do because he has much less patience with her annoying shenanigans than I do and mine is fraying at the ends.

She is increasingly frustrated by her lack of language skills. She sometimes knows what she wants but only has one word in which to express it: Meh-meh! Meh-meh! She'll point and say "meh-meh" until we say the right word and then, ah! She's so delighted we've finally figured it out because we are dolts. Sandwich? "Meh-meh!" Apple? "Meh-meh!" Grape? Cereal? Cereal? Eat the fucking cereal! "Nooooo!" Don't throw that on the floor! What the hell do you want? Waffle? "Noooo" Apple? Banana? Red laughs. Oh, banana's what you want! Then here have the whole thing and shut up already!

Two, maybe three slices eaten and then: meh-meh!

Oh and the word "No"? Often means "Yes."

Kill. Me. Now.

My patience was truly tested. Sunday is a very, very long day.

And, what made it worse? Red went down for a nap at 12:30pm. Went to sleep instantly because of the cold and she'd wore herself out jumping on the sofa with Dusty. Peace reigned but now I had a chance to get things done. Like install all the things I'd bought at IKEA last weekend when I journeyed up there with my sister (always a fun trip just for the company alone!). So, now I could install curtain rods and new curtains in the art room. Hang a princess/castle mirror in Dusty's room. Hang new butterfly curtains in Dusty's room. Replace crappy wooden hand towel rack and towel rack in kids' bathroom with new ones. Install mirror in kids's bathroom so that Dusty can now spend hours staring at herself rather than brushing her teeth, washing her hands, etc. Sigh. Erect new floor lamp for family room.

Then, at 2pm, it was Dusty's naptime. I was soooo in need of lying down and closing my eyes. Even for a mere half an hour.

At 2:04pm, Red woke up from her nap sobbing. Face covered in tears and snot.

Fuck. How many more hours until bedtime? Christ. Way too many.

So, after a diaper change, a fresh cup of milk, Red lay on me like a roo without a pouch to climb into, darn the luck. I drank a beer and read about Georgian England (i.e., the landscape that led to the founding of Australia by whites I'm such an intellectual, no?) with a heavy, sad, momentarily content child leaning against my chest.

Which, frankly, is a million times better than dealing with a screaming, flailing child who cannot be appeased by anything.

We ate banana chips and chilled. Red got happy again and we made tall towers with legos.

I won't discuss the usual dinner nightmare but let's just say that by 6pm we were done. Whether we'd actually eaten or not, dinner was over. And the floor was covered with half-chewed olives, bits of corn, shreds of cheese, crushed kidney beans.

Dusty went off to put her clean clothes away (under duress, I might add) and I surveyed the chaos: kitchen floor littered with collection of plastic storage containers and lids given to Red in the hopes that they would occupy her (not), and the aforementioned food bits; living room floor covered in sofa cushions and twenty pairs of shoes (of so many sizes and varieties it boggles the mind); and family room unnavigatible due to mounds of play dishes, play pots and pans, plastic food, stuffed animals, dolls and acoutrements, finger puppets, legos, wooden blocks, and about a half ton of crushed and crumbled crackers.

I'd had enough. I got out the vacuum cleaner. Yes, it had come to that.

And it was well worth the effort, let me tell you because even though Red made a mess behind me as I cleared a path for the vacuum, she loves noise. She loves the vacuum cleaner and will probably need hearing aids by the time she enters kindergarten because she likes to lie on top of the canister while I'm vacuuming. She is an odd child. But, at least a) she's happy momentarily and b) the sound of the vacuum covers up any annoying sound she might utter. Win-win.

So. It is finally Monday and life is quiet once more.

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10:06 a.m. ::
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