So my plans for today were crushed like a sad little cream cracker that got stomped on a thousand times with clodhoppers and smashed into tiny crumbs. You see, J was supposed to be off today, in lieu of taking Canada Day off. When he announced he wouldn't be able to take the day off after all, I swear my heart stopped for a few seconds, while my brain scrambled to make sense of the monstrousness of it.
I felt like a pre-teen girl who'd been told she couldn't go to the party - the one where they give out My Little Pony and Lego and Princess Barbie something-or-other, after all. Sorry love. No can do. That's life.
I seriously threw a mini-tantrum for about four hours.
Because, you see, it's been one of those weeks where I have dragged myself through each... hour... of... each... looooonnnngg.... daaayy... waiting, hoping, wanting, lusting after Friday. Friday, the shiny extra day that was to be gloriously added to the weekend. All week I had been cheering myself on. Come on girl, you can do it, just make it to Thursday night, and then there'll be two of us to face the drama. And two is so much better than one.
Did I mention that parenting is hard? Oh yeah. A few times heh.
I've held a number of jobs. About fourteen in total, including summer jobs, internships and "proper" jobs since graduating university. Some have been physically demanding. Some, mentally taxing: in one job interview I was told the company "only hires very intelligent people" (insert voice of pompous idiot) and that sometimes it was a "competition of intelligence", and they weren't kidding, it was exhausting. Another company joked with me that I'd probably be burnt out "by the time I was forty", because they worked so hard, but that I would never be bored along the way. I didn't stick around long enough to find out. But also, bloody exhausting.
But never, in my life, have I had a job like this. One that requires every muscle, every follicle of hair, every breath, every inch of stamina, patience and reason. One that means still going to that person with love and warmth at three a.m., when you've already been up with them twice since midnight. One that depends on every measure of my hearing, eyesight and sense of smell to anticipate whatever is about to happen. One that calls for creativity, cleverness and balance, all at the same time.
I know you know what I mean.
I don't mean to bang on about how awful I have it. Because I don't at all. In fact, most of the time I count myself extremely lucky. I get to watch our boys learn new things, do new things, see their personalities change and their bodies grow taller and stronger.
BUT. Today, as I listened to them both yelling simultaneously from their cribs during the no-nap time, I thought about how much I had looked forward to today. How I had clung to it. And how although most of the time I put on the brave "everything's fine" face, actually often I struggle with this job.
And then I thought about how nice it would be to be at work. In an office. To be wearing a suit with my hair straightened and glossy and my make-up perfectly applied. To listen to the quiet, controlled voices in a meeting, rather than the screeches and whines that occasionally make me edgy. To sit with a cup of coffee at a desk with neatly stacked papers and files and to actually drink that coffee before it becomes lukewarm. And to have a lunch break. And to drive home alone in a car for thirty or so minutes listening to the radio.
And then I thought, nah, I'd rather be here. Because there's nothing like this.