Monday, May 24, 2010

No Appreciation

I woke up before 7 a.m. on Sunday to Violet saying, “Me went poo poo in yo bed.” In my groggy state, I didn’t really understand what that meant until . . . oh no! It was everywhere . . . the sheets, the mattress, my pajamas, her. Violet has a healthy appetite and a hyper sensitive stomach. Morning is not my best time already, and an emergency of that type and at that time feels like a punishment from God.

I stripped the bed and steered my daughter into her room. Holding my breath, I ripped off the detachable sides of her pull-up and splattered myself in filth. We were both miserable. We moved to the bathroom. It took awhile to get her to an acceptable state for a bath. Without warning, Violet tried to make me laugh by sticking her unwashed hands in my mouth. My instant reflex was to scream, which made Violet go into a loud cry. I did my best to soothe her while cleaning up her hands and trying not to gag.

Violet shrieked when her feet hit the bath water. It was good to find out that she wasn’t injured. Apparently the water temp wasn’t exactly right. I wondered what it was that I was being punished for. Where was coffee, and how was I going to make coffee happen when I was sprinkled in feces and my daughter was having a meltdown in our only place to bathe?

After several complicated steps, Violet and I emerged shiny and new. I hit the ground running and transitioned to housework. My house is a nest of chaos at the moment. My husband is in the process of demoing part of the living room and continuing other aspects of the remodel. The air is filled with drywall dust and there are stacks of things like broken pieces of wood and tools layered with toy debris and dirty laundry. Think indoor garbage dump.

I grabbed my camera out of my purse because it was so horrific, I was going to take a picture. I had several cups of coffee at this point, so taking a picture sounded like a REALLY good idea. On my way to the living room, I slipped on a small pile of beach sand that my husband had forgotten to clean up on the slick hallway tile. I hit the ground hard, simultaneously breaking my camera and giving myself a bloody knee and bruised shin. I just bought the camera a few months ago. There was already a fair amount of tension in my home Sunday morning and after my fall, I broke down. What the hell kind of Sunday was this?

I felt like I needed some space, so I decided to walk down to where my car was left the night before. The kids insisted they go with me and I relented because I knew they were worried I was upset. A little fresh air would do us all good. We got about three blocks into our walk – the kids were on their scooters - when Violet was suddenly done. She declared she was going home, turned around and took off. I got Daisy to follow me and as I ran, I saw people laughing and pointing at us from passing cars. You know how I feel about running in public. Violet giggled hysterically until I reached her.

Daisy and I escorted Violet home then returned on our walk to retrieve the car. The adrenaline from my fall had subsided and my leg was really starting to hurt. Once we got to the car, I figured we should head straight to Trader Joe’s because the fridge was looking empty. As I was parking at the store, I realized I didn’t have my purse. On our dash home, Daisy reminded me of my promise: I was to help her “remodel” her room. She’s suddenly a different kid. She wants to rearrange her room, reduce the pink and princess. She wants a secret fort. It was the last thing I wanted to do, but I had been putting her off and owed her some quality time. So after another lap to the grocery store, I ignored the rubble strewn across the house and headed to Daisy’s room.

We cleaned and moved furniture and rearranged furniture and argued and rearranged furniture for more than four hours. We made a substantial pile for our upcoming garage sale. I became obsessed with building the secret fort. I started with a kid’s tent that you set up like a standard tent. It really shouldn’t have been difficult but I accidentally broke it beyond repair. I remembered the Cranium fort-building set in Daisy’s closet. It seemed like a good idea when we bought it but we’ve never really figured it out. I was determined to make it work but it was flimsy and ridiculous. It went into the garage sale pile.

Finally, I had a brainstorm. We angled Daisy’s bed diagonally, so that it blocked off one of the corners of her room. I threw a small rolling clothes rack behind her bed and pinned a tapestry to the wall and draped it over the rolling rack, creating a sort of fairy-hippy tent in the corner of her room. We filled the space with pillows and decorated it with fabric flowers and stuffed animals. I would love to show you but my camera is broken.

After getting to a good-enough-for-now place in Daisy’s room, I cleaned the rest of the house for a few more hours, breaking to fold laundry. I gave up before I even got to the living room . . . bone tired, bruised and limping with that sore whiplash feeling.

I opened my eyes this morning to Daisy standing by my bed. “Mom, is it carpool day?” No, that’s tomorrow. “WHY???” I reminded her that it was Monday and I had to take her sister to speech. I asked her if she was ready because Donna [our daycare lady] would be arriving soon. Daisy flipped out, “YOU NEVER HELP ME!!!” and stomped out of the room. Obviously, I didn't help her get ready for school this morning but her dad did. The kid is not being neglected.

She found me getting dressed a few minutes later,“Mom, why don’t you help me?” What do you mean? I showed her my bruises from moving her furniture around. Who built your secret fort? “Well, you help me a little.” I got a little animated . . . WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT? EVERYTHING I DO IS FOR YOU AND YOUR SISTER! This, of course, isn’t technically the truth, but close enough. Daisy had a little smile on her face. We weren’t really fighting. She seemed to need some reassurance from me this morning. She challenged my claim, “That’s not true . . . remember when you gave that homeless guy your sunglasses. That wasn’t for me!” I was stunned by both her memory and audacity. I grabbed her and squeezed her then told her to run because I was going to spank her, and she ran away laughing.

Next time I smell one of those sweet little fuzzy baby heads and feel a pang of sadness that there are probably no more babies in my future, I will try to remember where that baby love can get you . . . bruised, splattered in feces, and straight up unappreciated.

1 comment:

  1. haha! If I ever needed another reason why Holden is not allowed to sleep in our bed this is it.

    I don't want anymore children, but I feel the same way when I see other people's tiny little babies. I don't know why, but those tiny shoes get me every time. lol