I'm rarely primped and coiffed by kindergarten drop off time. On a normal day I am woken by Jemma before the sun comes up. I moan. Nic goes and gets her and potato sacks her to me. I nurse her and try to sleep. Afton then wakes up at an unholy hour and comes and stares at me. I can hear her breathing through her nose. I can feel her breath on my face. I pretend to sleep. I'm getting pretty good at the subtle fake snore and at not squinting my eyes. Once Jemma starts whispering "ta- ta" and "dee- dee", I know my gig is up. Soon will come the face patting, nose pinching and head butting. Rise and shine.
My mom always tells me that there are keys to successful mommyhood. A couple of these keys include doing at least one load of laundry a day and getting up way before your kids do. I know it's possible because I see the other moms at school show up with a fresh blow-out or damp pony tails. They manage somehow.
I pour cereal and gather backpacks in my p.j.'s. I dress and comb and herd children from room to room. "Did you go pee pee?" "Did you eat all your food?" "Uh-oh, we only have ten more minutes" "You can't wear your snow-suit". "No, you don't need your snow boots." "Yes, I promise you Friday is and has always been a school day".
Two minutes before departure, I take the stairs two at a time and find my clothes that are rumpled accordian style on the floor next to my bed. Exactly where I left them the night before. I always have a fleeting thought of, will the moms notice this is what I wore yesterday? As an afterthought I pull Nic's hoodie we bought on our honeymoon off of a hanger and throw it over yesterday's shirt. Perfect disguise! I look in the mirror and use my knuckles to scrape yesterday's mascara crumbs out from under my eyes. I tell myself, "I gotta get up earlier!"
Drop off, kisses, waves, "See you in a couple hours!" "Run! Don't look back!"
When I got home this morning, Jemma was ready for her nap. I took her upstairs and rocked her. I know when she is asleep because she breaks into a sweat just like her dad. This morning's sleep sweat warmed up her face, turned her cheeks pink and made her smell of the maple syrup I hadn't cleaned off of her face yet. I layed her in her bed. One of her legs had escaped her jammies and was hanging bare outside of the yellow flowered terry cloth. That image was a metaphor for my mom-ness...Everything is fine, people are happy, but nothing will ever be put together perfectly! Amen.