Wednesday, October 12, 2011

My Whole Brand Spankin' New Life

My life, y'all. It is unrecognizable. It changed overnight. The day Rebecca started kindergarten.

She went into school with a giant backpack hanging down to her knees. And she looked so tiny. And she wasn't sure about it. And I wasn't sure about it.

And then she came home from school that first day acting like she was ON CRACK. Its as if the teachers are up there passing out speed tablets to everyone. I was expecting a droopy, teary, exhausted kid. But I guess all those years of self-inflicted hell sleep deprivation have paid off. She is USED to it.  She ran directly outside and played with the neighborhood kids until I dragged her back inside against her will to go to bed at 7 p.m. She seriously falls asleep at an early hour every night.

It is like a totally new world.

I am no longer the sole person in charge of entertaining her all day every day. And that, my friends, was a huge job. That kid has 36 million projects going at all times and her brain is whirring and spitting out questions and demands and requests and godknowswhat so damn fast. And the trail of trash and detritus and mess she generates is so vast and so wide that by 9 a.m. I feel I've run a marathon.

But now that is someone else's problem from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. NOT MY PROBLEM. Muah ha ha ha ha.

And even better? Andrew started two mornings a week at preschool. Praise the baby Jesus in his oxen stall.

I have FREE TIME. Y'all, seriously. FREE TIME. On the calendar. Four hours a week. I can schedule a haircut without lining up babysitters. Heaven on a biscuit.

Downer of a side note: One sad sad thing has happened, though. I think Andrew is kinda done napping. And I'm really in serious mourning about this. SERIOUS. Because this means I no longer nap. Ever. This is a problem I'll address later. Back to the good stuff!

Gone are the days of me, stuck inside with two kids and trying desperately to fill the hours until bedtime. Suddenly I am go-go-go-going ALL the time. Taking Rebecca to school, taking Andrew to school, going to the gym, picking Andrew up, taking Andrew to gymnastics, running errands, running home to put dinner in a crockpot, taking Becca to soccer. Taking Becca to ballet. Dashing around at all hours of the day. Meeting John for LUNCH. OUT. At 1 p.m. Going to Home Depot at TWO p.m.

This is Unheard Of.

I'm serious.

Do you know the last time I was out running and errand during Sacred Nap Time? NEVER. That's when.

It is like a whole new world has opened up to me. And I'm standing there, beaming, shading my eyes, blinking, and looking completely bewildered.  THIS is how I imagined life would be as a Stay at Home Mom. Or, as I like to call it Work At Home Slave  Mom. 

This is something I can handle. Those last five and a half years were hard for me. Just hard.  Dealing with willful toddlers. This is like a fresh breeze in comparison. I feel like this giant weight has been slowly lifting and then suddenly on the first day of kindergarten and preschool it just finally dropped off. I have BACK UP. I have SCHEDULED free time without any guilt. Really this should be a requirement for all parents the minute a baby enters the scene. Because this makes it do-able.

I guess I like go-go-going. And now instead of traveling, I am going bonkers in my own town. Now I have to go pack a ballet bag and snack and go pick up Rebecca and take her to ballet. So I'm outta here!


Swistle said...

This is how I'm feeling this year too. The twins are in first grade, and Henry is in preschool. There are HOURS for MAKING APPOINTMENTS. I sometimes go to ONE STORE AFTER ANOTHER, with ONLY MY PURSE AND NO STUFF FOR KIDS. It's...bizarre.

Kayris said...

Just wait until they are both in school. You won't know what to do with yourself. Or you probably will, but you might find yourself randomly screaming just because it's way too quiet and you need to check if maybe you went deaf.

Right. And summer will be different. I missed my big kid like crazy when he started K, so I was glad when summer vacay rolled around. But it meant I had to keep us super busy because the kids were not used to spending so much time together and would fight a lot if not kept occupied. For that, I recommend TV. And the pool.

One interesting thing: last winter I lost my job and got a new one with more hours. Plus I work two other jobs. Yeah, one is a writing gig and the other one is a treasury gig and I can do those from home, but sometimes I want to do them during daylight and not when I should be sleeping. Plus both kids have activities (right now it's the same activity, soccer, which is right around the corner. Different teams, but they have to be there at the same time.) and homework and stuff. SO my friends with babies and preschoolers don't get why I can't drop everything and meet them at the playground because the sun came out. If you want to hang out with me, I need a month's notice. That may be the only thing I miss about having kids not in school.

Angie said...

Sounds great. I always just appreciated when Christopher was sleeping when Ashlyn was in school. Do you have to entertain Andrew more while Becca is in school? When I just have Christopher, he always seems to be more work than the two.

Angela said...

I can admit that I am slightly jealous! I just got my hair cut last week. First time in EIGHT months!
Rebecca is such a smart girl! That's why she keeps you on your toes. Luke is like that, too. Must be those December babies!