Days like this are the kind of days
that have me questioning everything, mostly myself. I have come so far, and
just about the time I think I’m gaining momentum, I hit a speed bump emblazoned
with the letters…. FAIL. I envision them painted in bright, neon green for some
It started at around 4 a.m. I was
having a dream that I needed to go to the bathroom. It was the kind of dream
where you are awake enough to somehow tell yourself , “Don’t wake up and go to
the bathroom because you’ll have a hard time falling back asleep and the alarm
is surely going to go off any minute now. You need sleep.” The dream won. Sure
enough, it was 4:12 a.m. I did my thing and realized instantly….the dreaded
UTI. Sorry guys, but it’s a girl’s worst enemy. Nothing can ruin a day’s plans
quite like this, short of getting hit by a bus. I rummaged through my stash of
expired medicine to see if there was anything left to take—nada. I tried to
fall back asleep—double nada. I downed water hoping to flush it all out…more
pain. I was literally counting the hours until the kids woke up so I could take
them to school and I could get myself to one of those doc in the box type
places for some drugs, stat.
This little illness follows the
Fifth Disease diagnosis my pre-schooler had last week and the little bladder
infection she had herself right on top of it. It’s been fun times around our
house for certain. Oh, and off topic – speaking of pee…the “sweet” kitty cat I
got for my daughter out of guilt for giving her dog away three years ago (which
she hasn’t forgotten and reminds me of almost weekly AND writes about in school
every chance she gets) is in perpetual heat. Since there are no male cats to be
found, she “releases” herself all over the house by marking her territory every
few inches along all of the baseboards. Pee sucks, especially around this
house. I hate pee.
OK, back on topic….I continued to
do my work, writing profiles and the like while trying to ignore my little
illness, praying the drugs I scored earlier would kick in. They never really
did. Finally, I gave up around 4 p.m. and called my personal doctor who said she could squeeze me in at 5. She had
a feeling this had gone to my kidneys or I just needed stronger medication. She
was right on both points and by 7 p.m., I was in a much better place. Still in
pain, but nothing compared to earlier in the day when it was so bad I was
nauseous with chills.
I managed to get some things done
around the house while tuning into Idol and called the kids in from outside to
get ready for bed. The oldest child came in on the first call, but I don’t know
who it was that tagged along behind her. It was a child that looked like
Olivia, but certainly didn’t act like her.
“I’m NOT going to bed and YOU CAN’T
MAKE ME!” (Said in an almost laughing/almost crying hysterical whine.)
(Insert howling wail/moan/mating
call from cat as she humps the laptop.)
Then, she pushed me. Not the cat –
I did the whole “you are on thin
ice, missy” routine. It didn’t affect her one bit.
So she pinched Kate.
“OWWW! Did you SEE that Mom?”
Kate takes off running with Liv
right behind her, kicking her whenever she gets the chance. Kate is yelling
while Liv is laughing, watching me with these daring eyes… “So, lady, what
are you going to do now?”
By this time the noise is at a
deafening level right when the phone rings. Kate recognizes it’s her dad’s
ringtone and immediately picks it up to tell on her little sister. The drama
escalates as Olivia takes a full glass of iced tea and proceeds to dump it out,
looking right at me, all over the coffee table as I watch it drip—wait, make
that pour—down onto the rug, creating a nice tea stain that will be impossible
to remove. Olivia laughs, delighted and proud of herself for making me scream
out in horror at what she had just done. Kate is giving her dad a play-by-play,
much to my disdain as I’m sure he’s reveling in the “I told her it would be
like this” glee.
Unfortunately, the pain pills haven’t
kicked in yet, and I’m feeling just about as bad as I felt earlier in the day,
but there’s no rest when there’s a spilled iced tea emergency and an ex-husband
laughing at your failure as a parent. I had to stop Liv from her rein of pre-K
terror. Kate keeps talking to her dad while I simultaneously clean up the mess
and deal with Olivia. Then I hear a WAIL, almost as bad as the cat’s, coming
from Kate’s room. Olivia had taken a large cup from the bathroom, filled it
with water, and dumped it right in the middle of Kate’s room, just to see what
This is what happened: It ruined
the art project she had been working on since December – colors bleeding
everywhere off of the poster.
“I HATE YOU OLIVIA! I HATE
EVERYONE! I HATE MY LIFE!”
SLAM. And then she cries to her dad
on the phone. I’m tempted to listen in, but I have bigger problems.
I continue to deal with Olivia –
grounding, stern voice and face, go to your room….all of it. She runs from me
and locks herself in the bathroom screaming at the top of her lungs, “I WANT A
NEW MOMMY! I HATE MY MOMMY! I WANT TO GO HOME TO ANOTHER HOUSE AND NOT THIS
HOUSE! YOU MAKE ME GO TO BED ALL THE TIME! I HATE EVERYONE IN THIS HOUSE! I
HATE EVERYONE IN THIS WORLD!”
By this time, I’m on the phone with
their dad talking about this new phase Olivia has entered into, which
apparently she showed off for him on Saturday night as well. He tells me to
ignore her. That’s what he did, and according to him, worked.
Kinda hard to do, but I try. I
continue to clean up and do things around the house while she continues her
rant. She tries to go into her sister’s room but realizes it’s locked. So she
starts kicking it and ripping the papers down that had been carefully taped up.
She finds me on the floor, sopping up spilled tea, and proceeds to kick me
square in the back and grab my shirt telling me she wishes I would go away
I sternly and rather forcefully
take her and sit her down right on my lap telling her that I know she’s tired
and doesn’t always like the rules but that she has lost all privileges for a
week, including coloring, play time, outside time….. I go on and on and talk to
her about apologizing to me and her sister. She runs to Kate’s room and screams
“I’M NOT SORRY!” She sees one glass of water left and throws it on me. And
laughs. I cry. I just start to cry.
Fine, go ahead. Tell me how I lost
all control at that moment and let a five year old defeat me. I was tired.
Sick. Nauseous. Earlier in the day, I went through all of my bills, paid them,
and realized yet once again that I work like crazy for pennies and every penny
goes to the house that I can’t sell. The same house, apparently, that both kids
hate and look at as the reason they aren’t in their “real house” anymore. I
hate this house. I really do. (Gee, I wonder where they get it?)
Off topic again. This house is too
much work. It’s too big for us. The rooms we don’t use are too big, and the
rooms we do use are too small. It’s a crappy floor plan. And speaking of
floors, they have cat pee on them in most every corner. EW. The yard is way
bigger than we’ll ever need. And guess what that yard does? Yep, grow. Guess
who sucks at using the lawnmower? Yep, me. It dies every few feet and I kill
myself starting it back up. Up until last week, the weeds were taller than Liv.
The HOA has killed countless trees sending me certified letters warning me to
fertilize and weed-eat my lawn. A lawn is a single working mom’s nightmare.
OK, sorry….back on topic. So I
continued with the bedtime routine. Helped her into her nightgown as she
struggled to fight me. Consoled my oldest daughter while she got into bed,
crying herself to sleep that it was “the worst day ever.” Turned off the light
while the youngest kicked and tossed and turned in her bed reminding me in her
loudest, yet broken with sobbing tears voice, “I hate you. You are the worstest
mommy ever, and I am not going to give you what I am making you in school for “modder’s
I calmly told her that it’s too bad
we had such a hard night and that tomorrow morning she needs to apologize to
her sister. That she has lost story privileges for the night and mommy’s going
to bed now. “I HATE EVERYBODY. EVERYBODY IS ANNOYING. EVERYBODY DOESN’T LOVE
ME!” I, of course, remind her that while I’m very disappointed her behavior tonight,
I love her very much. I pray it sinks in, but it doesn’t seem like it.
As mad as I am at her, my heart
breaks for her. She’s five and she’s beyond tired. Beyond upset. She realizes
what she’s done and doesn’t know what to do next. I tell her than when she
calms down I’ll come lay beside her. “You won’t. You always say you do and you
don’t. You lie!”
I remind her that I lay with her
every night until she falls asleep. She argues that point, but I let it go.
The tears dry and the
cry-breathe-thing slows down. She’s, at last, asleep.
I check on the oldest and she’s on
the floor, still in tears. Her bed is wet. Apparently, we missed it when Olivia
poured water on the bed as well. She looks at me with the “please let me sleep in
your room tonight” eyes. So I just say, “Come with me and go straight to sleep.”
We don’t really discuss anything.
She asks if I think there’s any way to save her poster. I tell her I don’t
know, but that we’ll try. And I remind her that it’s hard to be the youngest
when it seems like everyone else gets to do everything and you’re always “too
little.” She’s going on 9 ½, so she understands, even if she doesn’t like it.
I don’t like it, either.
When I finally sit down to finish
up some work, I realize I’m exhausted to the point of not even being able to
sleep…yet. And the tears just start to fall. First, a little here and there,
and then a floodgate. I thought maybe writing about it would help. It usually
does. And it already has. Not sure why, but it works. And whatever works,
I hate it that he got to literally
hear my FAIL tonight. He even got a play-by-play as it happened. Nothing I can
do about it now, but it admittedly bothers me. I thought abut calling my mom,
but I know she would just worry. There’s only so much your parents can do for
you when you’re a month shy of turning 38. This is my bed, and I’m all the way
I took some more medicine and
noticed that the pain has noticeably faded. I don’t know if it was because of
the medicine or because I was so incredibly distracted. As I wrap this up, I’m
happy to finally be tired enough to sleep and just annoyed enough to realize
the cat (MEEEOOOOWWWWWW) is going to keep me from it until she realizes that
there is no late-night bootie-call delivery service for male cats.
To my left is a pile of work which
is just going to have to wait until tomorrow. I think I need today to
officially be over. But before it is, I’m going to go check on the little one
and pull her covers up…make sure she has her ducky. I’ll keep telling myself
that this would be happening at this stage no matter where we lived or what our
life circumstance, but I have my doubts.
Today sucked – for me, for my
bladder, for Kate, for Liv, and yes even for my revved up, over-sexed cat.
Guess that’s why God gives us
tomorrows. To try again. I failed today. I’ll be feeling pretty good if I can
just get a C tomorrow. Extra credit for a smooth bedtime, too. A girl can