Thursday, October 02, 2003

Bruised and Battered

I started this post this morning. I was feeling proud (mostly) of my ability to further my professional career during spare moments in the day. I wrote:

Kids have their own internal clocks which shift as they get older. Now that baby is 1-1/2, he's skipping the morning nap, which is a very sad thing. I counted on those two hours for getting work done, blogging, and cleaning the kitchen. It's not a whole lot of time, but I'm an expert at working during naps. As soon as baby's head hits the crib, I sit at the computer which is already turned on and ready for action. No warm ups of paper reading or solitaire allowed. I finished my dissertation that way.

Even with fully conscious toddlers, I still can multitask. My patented method of reading the New Yorker is to lie down in the middle of the kids' room and read. The kids like it. They think I'm paying attention to them. I'm also acting a wall keeping one kid on one side of the room with his trains and destructo-baby on the other side.

OK. So far I'm being rather cocky. Then I type in the following paragraph:

Sadly, the baby fell asleep on the trip back from picking up Jonah at nursery school. He woke up as I carried him up the stairs, and I couldn't get him back to sleep. I even let him cry in the crib for five or ten minutes. (Stressed, I ate half of an Entemann's Fudge Cake.) I think those five minutes of commuting sleep will be it for baby today. I'm screwed.

Then things just got worse.

Some days I think I can do everything. And other days, the city, the stairs and the kids all gang up and kick me in the ass. I have so many undone chores that I can't muster the courage to make a list. Haircuts. Fall clothes sorted. Dental appointments. Thank you notes. Broken watch band. For some reason, I fixated on the down comforter as my main task of the day.

Two weeks ago, the baby gagged on a half chewed goldfish and puked on our comforter. Since its down, it has to go to the dry cleaners. OK, easy enough, right? No, smartie. Not when you live in a four floor walk up.

So, I wasted precious time this afternoon trying to come up with a strategy for getting the comforter down the stairs while carrying the baby. I would put the comforter in a garbage bag and kick it down the stairs. Then put the baby in the stroller stored under the stairs. But how would I carry this big bag and push the stroller? Balance the bag on my head? Put the comforter in the stroller and point the baby in the general direction of the cleaners? Finally, I decided to put that chore off until Steve was home to watch the kids.

Next dilemma. We're out of diapers. Mom gave us two boxes diapers a week ago (diapers are much cheaper in NJ), but they were still in the trunk of the car. So, I call the garage giving them an hour notice. I get the car and pick up Jonah from school. We get back to the apartment at 11:50 where I plan to park the car on the street in front of the building. That way Steve can carry the boxes up the stairs on the way home from work. But it's alternative side of the street time. We can't legally park until 12:30. Ian falls asleep. I wait until 12:10, grab a handful of diapers, and leave the car. Luckily the man left us alone.

I admit defeat. I'm officially a mess.

We've going away this weekend for a quick vacation to Newport, Rhode Island. Packing for the trip might just kill me, but I need to clear my head. We have no agenda for the weekend. Long walks around gilded age mansions (I doubt the boys will put up with too much interior views) and sea food suppers.

Last post until after Monday's class. ta-ta

FYI. I've been posting a lot lately on work/kids stuff. (Hit the Sept. archive for the last couple days.) If you have opinions on the subject, head over to the Invisible Adjunct. She's got a comment section. (Thanks, IA.)

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