March 10th, 2011
Life with two small children is a funny thing. (I’m using “funny” loosely.) Things move and change so quickly, yet so slowly at the same time. Just yesterday I felt on top of the world. Like a super mom. I carefully planned my day and, though I had to move at breakneck speed, I got everything done. Everything included some work, some time with my kids, a contribution to my kids’ school and going out with a girlfriend. I managed to touch on all parts of my life in a way that was soul satisfying. Then, in what feels like an instant, things changed.
I decided to work out my husband’s office today instead my own home office, where it can be near impossible to focus deeply. I was going to tackle something big. Something for you guys. Something for One Hungry Mama. Something for me. A something that’s been on the back burner and moving way too slowly. This was the way today was supposed to go: say goodbye to the little one, drop the big one off, have a meeting at school, get to the Hungry Papa’s office, meet with him about something, then his team, then finally start my project, which I’d be able to work on as long as I’d want because tonight was also date night.
Booya! I got serious, right? I was really making time for myself.
Everything was going smoothly. Well, smoothly enough. And then — I KID YOU NOT — within minutes of beginning work on my project the Hungry Boy’s teacher called.
Strep throat has been going around our school and the Boy complained of not feeling well. I knew I had to pick him up. I cried as I packed my stuff. Then I called my BMF who has been having a doozy of time, too. I just asked, “How do we make it through?”
I picked up the Hungry Boy. As soon as he saw me, he got teary. He hugged me and whispered, “Mama.” I could tell he was feeling terrible. The minute I saw him, I knew I was where I wanted to be, doing what I wanted to do. Still, I was feeling pretty terrible, too.
From school, we headed to the doctor’s office where we waited a long time to find that the Hungry Boy does, in fact, have strep throat. He so badly wanted to head home, but I was determined to start his medicine immediately. (There’s a whole other layer to this story: the Hungry Boy is supposed to take off on a 2 pm flight to Florida with grandma tomorrow. He’s looking forward to it and, honestly, though we’ll miss him, the Hungry Papa and I have been beyond excited about having only one child for the weekend. We’re so deep in that caring for just one child sounds like pure luxury.)
Instead of going home, we walked straight to the pharmacy and agreed to wait the 40 minutes for the Hungry Boy’s prescription. We stepped outside the pharmacy doors, into the wind and rain, and looked around for a way to kill time. I spied a Dunkin’ Donuts and greasy spoon diner and asked the Hungry Boy if he wanted french fries or donuts. He cracked his first smile of the afternoon. Both sounded good to me, too. Despite my attempt to jedi mind trick him, the Hungry Boy chose french fries. We nestled next to each other in a diner booth and shared a big plate of greasy steak fries, with separate mounds of ketchup to keep from sharing germs. It was still a pretty terrible day for us both, but we were feeling better. At least while we shared fries.
Back at the pharmacy, the Hungry Boy asked for “just a little bit of sugar, like maybe one of these bars with just a littttttttllllle chocolatey sugar. ” (That is an exact quote.) I picked up a bag of Reeses Pieces, you know, to help the medicine go down. And sure enough, those chocolately, candy coated bites of sweet peanut butter did the trick. I have no idea how I would have gotten him to take the medicine without it.
Food (I’m using “food” loosely) saved the day.
I’m home now, in from the rain, boys asleep. I’ve got homemade chicken soup defrosting for the Hungry Boy. I’m not on date night, but instead waiting for take out and writing this. (Please forgive my unusually messy writing, because I do not plan on editing this.) When that doorbell rings, I’m going to dig into my favorite lentil soup which comes with freshly baked pita, and I cannot wait. I’ll probably follow up with some ice cream. I’m looking forward to something — something that will actually happen — for the first time today.
Yesterday, I was on top of the world. Today not so much. How quickly we fall.
And my project… sigh… I’ve yet to start it. It’s moving more slowly than I can stand.
This is life with two small kids, huh? How do I make it through? Lots of love, faith that I’m doing my best (even when I feel terrible and am convinced that I’m not) and food. Mostly good food. Sometimes french fries and ice cream.
How about you? What foods heal you on your worst days?
PS: That picture? My Cannoli Ice Cream. Yum.