If I could have one wish since having kids, it would be to wake up peacefully and leisurely with my heartbeat at the resting rate of someone who has just woken up. Not someone who is about to base jump from the Burj Khalifa. A tall order?
I think it’s a humble request. After all, I could have wished for any manner of things. Winning the lottery. So I have enough money to employ a nanny for each child. Separate houses. So I don’t have to live with them. Or simply better behaved children. Which would actually solve most of my problems in one hit.
But I’m not greedy. Or unrealistic.
This morning’s crisis was about milk. I know this because approximately 15 seconds after I stepped out of bed I heard a blood curdling scream coming from the kitchen. The sort of scream reserved for something really, really life threatening.
Like having too much milk on your cereal.
I wanted to leave Daddy Pig to deal with it. I wanted to get in the shower oblivious to the noise penetrating my eardrums from two floors away. Before the egg-timer of opportunity ran out and my eardrums were further assaulted by the other one from above, gleefully announcing, ‘I’m awake!’ which roughly translated means, ‘no more time alone for another 12 hours!’
But I physically cannot tolerate that level of anguish so early in the morning. And there are only precious minutes before the crisis turns into a full three act Greek tragedy. The timing of the intervention is crucial.
Plus, it was Daddy Pig’s cycling to work day. He has much bigger concerns than too much milk on Beaver’s cereal. Like remembering to get dressed. And taking his trousers to work. I know, I live in a flipping circus.
So there I am, 45 seconds into my morning. Discussing acceptable levels of milk with Beaver and why she cannot have a hot cross bun instead (it’s not Easter, it’s a school day and we don’t actually have any). I explain, for perhaps the one millionth time, the school week routine, which Beaver knows by heart but enjoys making me repeat.
The lack of hot cross buns and the catastrophe of the Rice Krispies drowning in milk of course makes me a dreadful mother in her eyes. Even though I didn’t commit the crime of pouring the milk. I think how lucky the Rice Krispies are to be taking their last breaths and, for a moment, consider taking Daddy Pig’s trousers out of his rucksack. And I would, if he didn’t seem to be so damn comfortable sitting at work in his pants.
All of this has happened in the 90 seconds since I first opened my eyes. 90 seconds. How is that even possible? A mere 90 seconds before I am having to raise my voice. Against my will. Against my best intentions. Against the oath I retake every day not to shout.
And I wonder, why am I even entertaining this? Why am I talking a 4 year old down from the ledge? When all the while, I’m edging a little bit closer myself.
But I know why.
I’m just not a fan of Greek tragedies.
Is this how mornings run in your house? Have you managed to find a happier ending? Leave a comment below. Feel free to share. And if you like what you’ve read here, head on over to Surviving Life and Motherhood for more posts and anecdotes (by which I mean tragedies. Obviously).