Was that the sound of you just gasping because you had JUST told the lady on the bus (the one with the leopard-print neck brace) that you were DYING to know how Kendra spent her day?
I thought that was you!
Well, lucky for all our loyal readers here at kendraspondence, Kendra invited herself to the party going on over at Bowdenisms and will be sharing her real, that is, providing the true itinerary of a typical day in her shoes.
Most mornings I am up by 6:45 a.m. In the months when it is not dark out, I will wake earlier than this and go to the gym and hide behind my ipod, which is not an ipod but it sure beats calling it a walkman which is still, honestly, what I call it. I talk to no one at the gym because speaking before 10 a.m. when I am not being paid to speak and/or one of my children isn’t about to accidentally eat glue for breakfast is against my constitution.
But supposing I don’t go to the gym in the morning, I hit the shower while Loverpants readies the children. After my shower, I enjoy snuggling for a minute with the Little Man. I put on my clothes that I never ever ever plan the night before, and I apply make-up because if I don’t get to eat breakfast, the world will still make its lap around the sun but if Kendra doesn’t put on concealer, well, then, all bets are off. I should probably carve out time in the morning to pray, but I am more clearheaded with God at night. This is maybe what I tell myself?
If I do get breakfast, it is instant oatmeal in a bowl while standing and asking for the fourth time for at least one of our children to put on his/her shoes. I also absolutely need to eat a banana and drink a mug of coffee or I write with a palsied hand and drool uncontrollably for the rest of the day.
We all pile into the car together to go to my workplace and my daughter’s school and my husby and my son go the gym. Maybe this is your idea of hell, your whole family bumping down the road, sharing in the morning commute together, but this is a thin slice of Heaven for me. Even if someone is usually crying. We say a little prayer for our days and then I go to my office.
I go to my office and scan my e-mails and think about how I should have been better prepared for class.
Then I teach class. In other words, I jump around a room and embarrass my students with my enthusiasm and punny phrases. I laugh. After class, there is a good deal of requisite loitering in halls. Most of higher education actually happens in doorways and hallways I’m convinced.
I then proceed to not use good time management with my office hours. When I finally decide to get something real done, like grading or responding to work e-mails, 8-9 students or co-workers drop by my office. This is very good. Except when it isn’t. There are a number of people who don’t know how to end conversations. I am admittedly annoyed by this but cannot somehow disabuse myself of –anyway. So that’s my morning.
In the afternoon, I usually catch lunch on campus. I try to single out one student who might be struggling with life’s questions and we try to eat and pray together about stuff. Otherwise, Loverpants and Little Man will join me for lunch at the dining hall. Little Man usually behaves like a muppet on crack and embarrasses us like no parent deserves to be embarrassed. And yet we keep bringing him to lunch in the hopes that he’ll learn (?) Most afternoons I teach a class which I really love but still wish I were more adequately prepared. Right after that class, Loverpants picks me up from work. This car ride usually makes me sick and the kids are usually shouting over Loverpants and me.
Then Loverpants goes to work. He sees clients after school and in the evenings, so we kinda have a shift 1 and shift 2 going on in parenting land.
Just about every day I take a 20 minute disco nap after school. I need this. Sometimes it turns into a 1 hour nap. Usually one of the kids joins me on the bed and pulls my hair, which is undeservedly mean but whatevs. They watch TV and I nap, either on the couch next to them or on my bed.
Then we play outside in our big rambling yard and sometimes we accidentally trample the neighbors’ flowers. This is a really good time of day and affirms why we moved to Tennessee where it is moderately warm even in the winter.
After that we will wander inside and I will make my kids a dinner that will consist of whatever carb they are not sick of and lots of fruits. They eat in front of the TV. I am okay with this for now because I have chosen not to kill myself over a family dinner that hinges on me alone (see also: co-parent works evenings). I also eat a snack. A snack. Who has time to make themselves dinner? Not this girl. Showing my real here.
As much as it depends on me, my kids are bathed and pajamafied by 7:30 p.m. We read books and someone usually gets clocked in the nose. By reading books you ask? Yes. You’ll have to stop by sometime.
Then comes Candle Time where the kids fight over who gets to blow out the candle first. We sing a little song, say what we’re thankful for in our days. Then someone accidentally blows out the candle. Little Man always says he’s thankful for his Flynn fire truck. We sing a song about Jesus and then someone says a prayer that usually entails an intention for whomever was absent in Baby Girl’s school that day. Then they both re-blow out the candle and they get in their beds.
My children are not like your children who, the second their heads hit the pillow, they are out. My children are like I was when I was a child: overstimulated and of the belief that a reasonable bedtime is overrated. My children come out of their rooms 23894028343 times every night. I know I should read a book by Dr. Ferber about this, but I choose to sit in their room and rock them and tuck them in 2389408234 times.
I answer e-mails and work on my book project and by 10 p.m. I am too tired for all that malarkey so I read a book or do some yoga and then I do my devotions. I fall asleep feeling like the luckiest 32 year-old woman, in the body of a 78 year-old woman.
Yesterday the little man was sitting on the throne, telling me a story. As I leaned back against the wall while absorbing this riveting tale about Rosie and Railways, I continued to escalate in a descending manner, and my lean gave way to…OUCH. It turns out that the wall that I was so sure would support me leaning against it was not where I had anticipated. Have you ever done this? You think you are stepping onto a flat surface but the step is much lower than expected and your leg keeps going and there is only air? It was like that. Only I started to lean and then it felt like five minutes had passed and I was still in James Bond free fall and then–then my tochis was all wet. Because it turns out I had leaned not into a wall but into a shower stall. There was no wall. There was only an illusion of a wall. I think they call it a shower curtain.
So there Little Man was pooping and blabbing and there I was starting to lean and falling into a shower. My booty was now hurting and sitting in a puddle–insult to injury–and my elbow was throbbing.
“You scared me, Mommy!” said the Little Man, finishing up on the porcelain pedestal.
Oh, Son. Scary is not Mommy falling into a shower. Scary is how you share DNA with Mommy.
The saddest thing about all this was that we were at swim lessons for Baby Girl. And let us not even explore the ramifications of how a mother took her two children to swim lessons at the indoor pool, and how one child in appropriate bathing attire jumped into the pool and the other needed to be taken to the restroom and, upon returning from the restroom, only the mother had a wet spot on her behind.
Exit, stage left.