How do the single parents do it? I feel like I keep being asked to be in multiple places at once. I know I’m amazing and all, but I’m not magic. I have not yet figured out how to clone myself to spread around to all the people who need me.
I should feel so flattered that I am in such high demand. Actually it’s exhausting. Yesterday I put out fire after fire it felt like. I’m so tired of emails that I have to respond to and responsibilities I have to be an adult for. Today I sat down for a minute and found my eyes growing heavy. My phone was as far away from me as possible in another part of the house. I was confident the alarm would still wake me up. Giving in to the strange dreams found between consciousness was worth it. My eyes flew open 15 minutes early when I swore I heard the alarm.
Rejoining the land of the living showed I had missed four text messages in my groggy state of mind. One of them was from Emily. She said her kids were sick and missed the last two days of school so Dylan probably shouldn’t go to Scouts. Is it okay if I pick up Parker? Technically yes but it’s tricky when Gavin gets out of Track at the same time in another city!
Normally I would just keep Parker home but he is the Denner right now. He also finished up some more requirements that allowed him to earn his Bear. Next week is Pack Meeting. I needed the leaders to know he was ready for the award. I put in desperate call for help #2 to Heath. He left work early. Just not as early as I would have liked. Getting on BART at 4:20 when both boys get out at 5:00 doesn’t really work. I’m still not magic.
Both boys were incredibly late. They are inconsistently late so it’s extra annoying. One time I sent Parker to Scouts solo so I had to pick him up. I left the house with enough time to get there without traffic. With traffic I was about 10 minutes late. He was the last kid at the church waiting for me with his leaders. I felt bad.
Today his leaders were a good five minutes late even pulling into the parking lot. This happens all the time and I hate it. The timing of Scouts coupled with the inconvenient location means we get there at 3:30. Meetings are supposed to start at 3:45 but the leaders roll in five to ten minutes late … consistently. I really hate it on days like today when I’m not carpooling. It means I get home and pretty much have to turn back around to do it all over again in a matter of minutes.
Gwen and I were at the church ready to pick up Parker at 5:00. I figured Gavin would just have to wait for his dad to get off BART. The Wolves let out at 5:00. The Bears on the other hand, finally emerged 10 minutes later. Why! The good news was that Gavin hadn’t texted that Track was over.
Track is another story. It’s also supposed to end at 5:00. Some days it ends on time and other days it ends 15-20 minutes late. I am not even kidding. Today they were doing team photos. Everyone was supposed to wear their Track uniforms for the pictures and Gavin said practice would end early. Apparently they practiced after the pictures. I think that makes the most sense considering they have another meet tomorrow. It worked out perfectly. Heath was getting off the train about the same time I was heading home with Parker. I don’t think Gavin had to wait long if at all.
Dinner was supposed to be lasagna. I debated over starting it before I left to get Parker. Frozen lasagna bakes with the plastic on for 50 minutes. Not an hour. Then you take the plastic off and bake it until it hits temperature in our case. I think our lasagnas freeze too much or something. Anyway, it’s a process that requires some babysitting. I didn’t start it before I left. We all got home so late that I didn’t even want to bother. I figured the Diet Coke at a restaurant would make me feel better than lasagna served at 8:00 pm.
We went to Chili’s. The service was adequate. I did get my three drinks. Heath only got two. We had to ask for Gavin’s drink to be refilled after the waitress walked by us three times and never noticed. When someone else delivered our food we asked him for the refill. Gavin almost finished his steak dinner before the waitress came by and we asked her for the refill. He finally got his drink. Heath said his fajitas were the best he has ever had there. My Cajun pasta was not that great. I’ve had better. Really all I was looking for tonight was the Diet Coke!
Thursday I get to wake up in the middle of the night to get ready before I wake the kids up at 7:00 am. Gavin and I have to meet with a counselor or secretary. I don’t know who she is. I went in to get an independent study contract and I was given the name and number of a lady who is only there from 7:30 to 11:30 each morning. She requires the parent and student meet with her so she can explain the contract.
I called her this morning to set up the appointment. She wasn’t even there and I had to leave a message! My mornings are timed to the minute. I do not have time to waste calling people who can’t even answer their phone in the few hours they are at work! She called me back a couple minutes before we left to take Parker to school. Since we left late I dropped Gavin off at the bus stop.
We got the appointment set for Thursday. The only day this week Heath can get away with working from home. The appointment should take about 10-15 minutes and we should show up at a time when Gavin won’t be late for school. I’m trying to be nice and just jump through the hoops. Obviously the school wants to discourage parents from taking their kids out of class. But I’m the mom and it is my prerogative to say life is short – play hard. You can’t put a price on memories. I’m taking my kids out no matter the cost. Heath is turning 40 and we decided months ago that if you have to turn 40 you may as well do it in the happiest place on earth.
I don’t know how the single parents do it. Sometimes life gets so busy and parents get stretched as thin as possible. I’m so grateful I have a husband with a flexible work environment that allows him to help me out. I couldn’t do it without him.
Somehow I thought that once all my kids were in school I could relax. So far that is not true. I am busier than ever and I don’t get to do much for me. All my time is sacrificed for others. It’s cool because I have been the recipient of this type of service from mothers like me. Now I’m there paying it forward I guess. I just never thought it would happen to me. I never expected to spend most of my day driving around town. I never expected to have to decide between cleaning my house and breathing in a chair. I never in a million years expected to choose the chair over the house! Somehow the house doesn’t seem to matter anymore. I’m tired.
To all the dual income families and single parent households, my hat is off to you! You rock! I admire your selflessness in sacrifice.