It has been a long morning. I kind of went into it with a handicap, as I had to take my Vistaril last night and thus slept the heavy, crazy-dreaming kind of sleep that leaves me sluggish and bleary-eyed and cranky the next day. I heard Addy on the monitor around eight, chattering to her toys and flopping around on the bed, and listened, half-awake, for any signs of restlessness or discontent which would more urgently summon my presence. But before that happened, I heard through my haze the ominous turn of the doorknob and the pitter patter of feet down the hallway.
Yes, Addy has learned how to open doors. She's only done it a few times yet, but this morning was the true, inaugural achievement - she got it open on her first try, all casual and nonchalant, then padded around the house like, "Oh, I think I'll go out to the kitchen and start the coffee now, Mom, you want some?" My days of closing the door and knowing her to be safe are over. There is a gate across her doorway as well, but I'm thinking that isn't going to make for pleasant mornings if she manages to open the door only to find herself imprisoned yet again. We'll see.
So anyways, she comes in and jumps on me, and the smell of urine wakes me up in the way that only urine can. I got up and followed her down the hall, and from there it seemed to be just one power struggle after another.
I wanted to change her diaper before it soaked the living room carpet where she sat, but Addy wanted to run in circles around the house looking for Daddy. (Let me tell you, it's not easy to carry a furious, writhing toddler to her room and accomplish a diaper change while protecting your protruding abdomen from getting kicked. Quite the morning workout.) I wanted five minutes of peace in which to pee and brush my teeth, but she wanted to horrify me by uncapping my deodorant and rubbing it all over her face while I was on the toilet, and then celebrate by chewing on my toothbrush. I wanted to let the dog outside, Addy wanted to block my path to the door and cry hysterically- she seems unshakably convinced, despite no evidence to support her theory, that one of these mornings I am going to walk outside with the dog and never come back.
Then I wanted us to eat breakfast- bowl of Life and cup of juice for Addy, her favorite, and a couple of frozen waffles for me. Addy wanted to not her cereal and eat bites of my waffle while rubbing syrup into her hair. Then, while I'm standing at the sink trying to scrub last night's meatloaf out of the pan, I realize the dog sounds a little too happy and turn around to see Addy tossing soggy handfuls of cereal at him- and ON him. His hairy back was splattered with milk and partially dissolved Life, while he happily bathed the already none-too-clean floor with his gummy tongue. What followed was almost an hour of cleaning up Addy, the dog, the dirty spot on the floor, and then, because I realized there was no point in having one shiny clean spot when the rest of the floor was filthy, a full-on mop job.
Some days I just want to be one of those people who gets up- even if to a blaring alarm- and only takes care of their own needs for the first hour or so of their day. What must that be like? No child needing changed and fed and cleaned up and dressed, no dog whining piteously to go outside and then needing fresh food and water, no dishes or messes awaiting my attention. Just the bathroom, to be used when and for however long I like, and coffee, to be drunk while reading the paper or checking my email. Breakfast, to be eaten as soon as I get hungry rather than as soon as I get a chance. Showers to be taken and outfits to be deliberated over, makeup and hair products to be used without having them snatched from the counter and applied to the floor instead.
So I know, I know, we all love being mothers and wouldn't trade places with our single selves for a million dollars and all that- but what do you miss? What part of single life or childless life do you think of wistfully every now and then?