I get home from work at five. We take the kids for a walk. Make dinner. Do baths. Pajamas. Teeth brushing. Searching for lost stuffed animals. A better night light. Bed time stories.
Then there is the after dinner clean-up. Bottle washing. Sippy cup sudsing. I put laundry away. Sort bills. Make my lunch for the next day. Pick my nose. Straighten up.
Sometimes I remember to wash my face and apply wrinkle cream. Sometimes I remember to brush my own teeth. Junior told me my teeth are yellow, so I've been swishing with a teeth whitener.
Sometimes I get lost in thought and forget what I'm swishing. I find myself staring in the mirror and I think, What the hell is in my mouth?
I get into bed at 10:30 p.m. Then I lie there. My body has grown so accustomed to children robbing it of REM, it won't let me fall asleep.
They'll call for you the minute you close your eyes, it says. Don't even bother. Just lie here and obsess about things you can't control.
Ok, I answer. What shall it be tonight?
How about world hunger?
Great, I say.
At 3 a.m. the nurse next door slams her car door after working the night shift. I realize I've again had the dream where I'm dating Jack Nicholson and he gives me $1,000 cash to spend at Sephora.
What does it mean? I wonder.
I don't fucking know, my brain answers. But now you're awake and Diddlydoo will be up at 5:30. Why don't you just get up and start your day?
At 5:45 a.m. my little creep of a nine-month-old awakes. Because I am working and because I want to spend time with him, I crawl out of bed and give him a bottle. I kiss him. A lot. He falls back asleep.
I get into the shower. Shampoo my ass and soap up my hair. Chuck hands me a cup of coffee. I drink it in between shaving and yawning.
Then comes the drive into work.
My commute consists of 20 minutes on a small highway. The ride faces the sun. If I'm especially tired, the ride gets hazy and I imagine that I and my fellow commuters are moths drawn to a flame. Mindlessly heading toward that which will kill us (or at least singe our brains): Corporate America.
(You come here for the deep thoughts, admit it.)
And then. Then I arrive at work and spend a good part of the morning wiping spit up off my shirt and wondering why the hell I'm having a reoccurring dream about Jack Nicholson.
Oh shit. I just realized I'm still swishing.
About me: I'm 42 and added another gherkin to our pickle party of a family. My husband Chuck, our 9-year-old Junior, our 6-year-old Everett, our toddler and I live in a town in Connecticut I affectionately call Mulletville Lite (aka my childhood hometown). My friends call me Nutjob, and they're right. In my husband's spare time he dresses up as a Viking and chases ghosts (and I'm the nutjob?). When I'm not busy working as a graphic designer, I lie in a ball in the corner.