Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Looking forward to January 7th

Some evenings when I'm tucking my children into bed (read: putting them back into bed as they scream "I want Maaaaamaaaaa" and run to block the door I'm attempting to close), I feel my chest tighten. My fight-or-flight response system sounds the Red Alert. It issues an immediate evacuation notice and my adrenalin kicks in to carry out the mandate. The children come at me, arms stretched out like zombies, seeking to poke their little straws into my flesh and suck up every last drop of my blood. "I have nothing left to give you,!" I scream in my head.

Last night, the kids went down without major effort. Still, a few minutes later Eleanor padded softly down the stairs and appeared in the kitchen. "I don't know why," she said, "but my brain keeps telling me, 'I want Mama. I want Mama. I want Mama.'"

Well, my brain is telling me I want a good stiff drink, a soak in the bathtub, and world peace, I thought. "Tell your brain to be quiet and go to sleep," I advised.

Eli recently discovered how to climb out of his crib. Today he refused to take a nap and opted for climbing practice instead, despite Tobin patiently and repeatedly putting him back in his crib. This means he was nothing more than a puddle of tears-- loud, whiney tears-- by the time we had dinner tonight. My good little sleeper! The Easy One! Where have you gone? The tight cold grip of panick fingered my neck as Eli fought against going to bed tonight.

It's not necessarily sleep that I'm lacking. Thankfully I have no newborn to disrupt my night-time. (Though the odds of being disrupted by any one of my three children due to winter illnesses that seem to strike in the middle-of-the-night are pretty high on any given night). What I am craving, what I need, is simply some TIME FOR MYSELF. In capital letters in case you're missing the point.

Thus I've declared Monday, January 7 as Mama Appreciation Day. I will take the day off. I will schedule a massage. I will see a movie. I will eat out for lunch and dinner. I will return home long after the children are tucked into bed.

I may or may not need a blood transfusion by then. You know, on account of the zombies.