December 28, 2010

Ten Minutes

That's all I need.  Really.  Just ten minutes of quiet.  Ten minutes free from Haven's new train set, the remote control cars, the remote control Big Foot that actually throws tantrums and bangs it's plastic fists onto the floor, the clashing of light sabers.  It's the ugly underbelly of the holiday season that causes normally sane mommies to suddenly think the Grinch wasn't such a bad guy after all.  I sound just like him now..."All that noise, noise, noise, noise!" 

When Joe came home, we tried to discuss tax returns, IRA's and the like, but the boys were yelling politely at each other across the vast expanse of, oh, I don't know.  One foot.  I think that having to raise their voices to be heard over various plastic planes, trains, and automobiles has permanently set their vocal chords to the loudest setting.

So I asked Joe to play sitter so I could take an early shower and just get away from it all.  But of course that seemed like a good moment for them to brush teeth, meaning an invasion of little people yelling (still politely yelling) to each other about where their toothbrushes might be hiding.  Which, in case you are wondering, is in the top drawer, like every other night.  Always the same thing.  "Mom!  I can't find my tooth brush!"  "Me neither!"  "I found mine but not the toothpaste!"  What's a mom to do?  They are always in the same place, yet somehow they elude the searching eyes of everyone in the family under the age of 30.  So my shower time was spent yelling back through the curtain, my same old lines.  "Top drawer, as always.  Yup.  Toothpaste too.  No, really.  Top drawer.  I know!  I'm not tricking you by always sending you to the top drawer!"

So after my shower, I slipped into the bedroom to just be alone for a moment.  And a moment is about all I had before everyone realized that Haven misplaced the very last blanket in the house that he hasn't peed on yet.  The 20 others are in various stages of laundering.  Meaning the washer, dryer, and hamper are filled with blankets and we finally invested in some Good Nights diapers for 7 year olds.  The problem?  Oh, yeah.  It's that 3 year old Haven has the bladder capacity of a small elephant, and the largest size diaper still leaks when my little big man wets the bed.  Not just his bed.  Nope.  His brother's bed and my bed are all fair game.  Hence the serious lack of blankets.  So I had to crawl out of my fortress of solitude and go on a blanket hunt.  Hunter advised me that he was pretty sure Haven had pulled that last dry blanket into the playroom at some point in the day, so off I went.  Hunter is my hero, by the way.  The play room is the last place I'd have looked. 

But now, at 8:13 pm, the noisy toys have powered down and the kids are all tucked away.  Not silently, though.  Hunter and Haven are still singing "You'll give your love to me, for love is blind!!!!"  (Phantom, anyone?) from their beds, but it's a room away and a nice change from the engine noises of the day.  Soon enough we'll all be fast asleep.  They will no doubt dream that they are riding in the train with a dinosaur friend, but me?  I'll be someplace very, very quiet.  A convent, perhaps.  Someplace where toys are not allowed and vows of silence have been taken.  In my sleep I will recharge my mommy batteries for tomorrow when once again, I will wrestle the train controls from their tiny fingers in an effort to finish a math lesson, and then get down on my knees and play conductor in exchange for some sticky kisses.  Now that I think about it, the noise is a small price to pay for those sticky kisses.

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