I wake up. My first thought is about how horribly real the dream I had of one of my kids or my husband dying was. Nearly every morning.
Every one is fine. It was just a dream.
I lay there with my eyes closed for a few minutes waiting for the dream to fade and listening carefully for the voice of the person I dreamt about.
See, he’s fine. It’s ok. Up you get.
I finally face the day usually being attacked by my three little boys (3, 2, and 10 months) as I walk out. They start fighting over who gets me first and I consider going back to bed and trying again tomorrow.
Then I remember we have to leave the house. This is where it really goes downhill.
Ok, it’s a morning out. I can do this. Maybe I should just leave four hours early so hubby can help me get them into the car. Surely we can just drive around for four hours, right? No. Can’t do that. Maybe I should just cancel.
I think about the fact that I need to find them all clothes by digging through mount Foldmore (created because I simply don’t have the patience to refold every item of clothing ten times a day after the children throw it all out of the drawers).
Can’t they just go in their pj’s? Is it going to be warm or cold maybe I should pack both options, then I’ve got spares just in case. Oh gosh I can’t find any pants for bub. He can get away with these 0000’s right? No, they’d look like Kylie Minogue’s hotpants. Can’t do that. Maybe I should just cancel.
Then I need to make sure I’ve got all the bottles sterilised and packed, as well as formula. I need to get myself ready while they try to climb over me or ‘help’ me brush my teeth. I need to make sure I’m timing everything right for the little man’s bottles and the bigger boys morning tea/lunch/afternoon tea.
Will they need it all? Will we be home? What can I pack? We have no food. Can I buy them something? Not with $3 I can’t. What will I do? This is too hard. Maybe I should just cancel.
I finally get their food organised and start to register that I’m going to have to get their shoes on in a minute. I’m also very aware that I’m getting them ready way too early, which always leads to them whinging because they want to leave immediately. I manage to find them all mismatched socks and put their shoes on the wrong feet, put them back on the right feet, then realise the middle one is wearing his big brothers shoes. Oops. Fix that.
This is all just too much. Of course I put the wrong shoes on. God, so typically me. Why can’t I just be more organised. Every other mother seems to have her life together, why can’t I? Do we even still have the pair to this shoe? I don’t remember seeing it. This is ridiculous. I can’t do this. Maybe I should just cancel.
Then the big one has an accident.
Breathe. Breathe. He’s still little. You should have reminded him, it’s your fault not his. Stop yelling, you’re being ridiculous. Just deal with it. Reassure him that it’s ok, that you aren’t cross. Why are you still yelling? You can hear yourself. You can hear how horrible you sound. Please, please stop.
I give the little man a hug and tell him I’m sorry for yelling, and that everything is ok, accidents happen. He smiles and goes back to playing.
You’re a mess. You’ve lost it. These poor kids deserve better.
Just walk away.
Don’t leave them alone.
Just go outside for a minute, collect yourself.
No don’t do that you can’t leave them.
You have to go out for a minute.
What do I do? I am failing. I’m not cut out for this. It’s too much. I should just cancel. But then I’m letting them down, they’re going to hate me. Maybe they’ll understand. What do I say? I can’t just say ‘sorry can’t make it, anxiety won today’.
I send a message. ‘Hey, I’m so sorry to cancel, but we’re having a rough day. Can we reschedule?’
Note to self: Actually follow through with the reschedule. It’ll be another day, a fresh start. For goodness sakes, stop lying to yourself. Don’t commit to anything. They haven’t replied yet. Please be understanding. Please, I can’t handle any more today. It’s fine, they’ll totally get it. They’ll be totally fine. OK, it’s all good.
My phone notifies me of a message. It reads ‘That’s pretty disappointing. I was counting on you. Don’t worry about rescheduling.’
Down I go again.