Friday, December 14, 2012

A series of less than ideal events

Have you ever seen The Little Rascals (1994)? There's a line from that movie that has always struck me as gut-wrenchingly hilarious. Alfalfa has had a series of seriously unfortunate events. And Alfalfa thinks there's just no way it could possibly get worse. And then it does.

It's at this point that Alfalfa looks at the sky and says, "Then the clouds opened up and God said, 'I hate you, Alfalfa.'"

Not gonna lie. Totally said that about myself today.

First of all, it's been kind of a stressful week. Or series of weeks. Maybe month or so. We've had a lot going on. Like, we're expecting a baby soon (January 5. Or maybe 10. The doctors can't decide). And I'm as big as a house and can't fit into any clothes and my ankles have elephantitis and I have lost the will to shower. So that's one thing.

Another thing is the best midwife I have ever had decided to quit two months before I deliver. The nerve. So I had to switch to a doctor within the practice. I have nothing against doctors. In general. But I hate this one. And so now I get to drive three hours per week for the next four weeks to endure an annoying experience by someone I don't like. Yay.

Also, I am working in my ward's Primary. And that is challenging. And overwhelming. And most of the time I feel like I'm doing a bad job. It's kind of like Motherhood in that way. Except with a lot more kids. And a lot more opportunities for failure.

I should also probably mention that I work at home occasionally. I have this freelance technical writing job. The work isn't at all steady. So when I get an assignment, I want to make sure I complete it so they'll keep asking me and I can use the little bit of extra money for exciting things like credit card payments. Right now (and over the last couple of weeks) I have a pretty demanding assignment.

Oh, and we're building a house. Did I mention that? Well, consider it mentioned. It's Brad's job to physically build the house (and contract out the stuff he doesn't want to do like, say, drywall). My job is to get bids, keep track of the receipts, monitor the budget, and to have complete mental breakdowns once a week when I decide we're not going to stay within our budget and we'll have to go bankrupt and leave the country.

And then these past two weeks there's this bright spot: Brad's wonderful and amazing dad and uncle are in town building our house's foundation. They are doing an amazing job. They are dirt/rebar/concrete artists, I tell you. For real. (Not to mention the fact that they are really great social company and fun to talk to.)

So, here was today's planned schedule: I get up, get girls ready to go to school. Men go to construction site and pour concrete. I get home from taking girls to school, turn on PBS for Weston, and work for two hours (I know. Let me insert my own lecture here so you don't have to: I'm the worst mother. I don't know anyone else who lets their kid watch TV that long.). I clean the house, do dishes, fold laundry. I put Wes down for nap. Missionaries come over with investigator for discussion. I pick up girls. We do some activity. I make a very mediocre dinner and dessert. Boys come home. We eat, I get fatter, and then I go to bed.

I got all the way through the first two hours of work. And then a wind storm started. An apparently violent windstorm. My power flickered and the unsaved work I'd been doing all morning on my computer disappears (seriously? Like people still make the mistake of not saving things?!). And the power continued flickering. For three minutes or so. It was like the Poltergeist over here. So I flipped off the breaker to avoid potential damage to my computer documents or my dishwasher. (I'm really concerned about my dishwasher. Probably can't live without that thing.)

Couldn't work with the power off, so I started to clean in preparation for the missionaries who were scheduled to arrive in thirty minutes. Just then I got a text from the kids' school saying I need to come bring my daughter extra clothes. Immediately after that, Brad called from work and requested that I go to the store and get some plastic for our foundation (I guess rain is bad for concrete). But I was stuck with a sleeping baby, waiting for people to come to my house. I told Brad my predicament, and he told me to go to the store when I could. I texted the school to tell them that there were clothes in one of the girls' backpacks, and that I would bring more if needed. Then the missionaries texted, canceling the appointment, and... my phone died.

Since I didn't have to stay home anymore, I thought it would be best for me to go to the school and comfort my probably embarrassed daughter. As I gathered clothes from the girls' room, I looked out the window into the backyard to see flooding. And not from the rain. A geyser had formed in the dirt. It took me a few minutes to realize that our rowdy puppy had totally snapped a garden hose pipe. The resulting waterway had created a stream that went through our yard and well out into the alleyway. So, I did what I always do when I'm on the verge of hyperventilating, and I called Brad. He told me how to turn off the water (sensible man). Lucky for me, the shut-off valve happened to be located INSIDE the newly formed creek. I waded into the backyard in my flip-flops and groped in the water for the shut-off valve while the dog pounced on my back and covered me in mud. After successfully turning off the water, I sludged back into the house, dripping grossness onto my newly mopped floors. I woke up a cranky Weston, wrestled him into his carseat, and drove to the school (first checking on the men at the jobsite to see if they need the plastic--they didn't). I arrived at the school and hesitantly dragged my drenched, mud-crusted self to the front desk where I was greeted with, "When are you due? You're ready to pop! Oh, you have mud all over your coat, did you know that?"

It was about then that Alfalfa's line ran itself through my head.

I think I'll stay in bed tomorrow.


  1. Thanks for being real. Its nice to know that life is crazy and not so glamorous for other moms too. I hope tomorrow is a better day. You're so close to having that baby! Exciting! And that's awesome that you're building a house too.

  2. I let my boy watch that much TV. So you do know someone else who does that.

  3. Hey, it's PBS, not The Young and The Restless. I think you're great. Always. And I really hope this story is funny to you one day. I'm glad you have it recorded for just further proves that you're superwoman to those closest to you, your family.

    Love you and good luck with the new baby.

  4. I would just like to point out that amongst this horribly stressful day, you still managed to do dishes, clean your house, fold laundry, AND make dessert with dinner!!!! Seriouly, girl! I don't know what you are thinking about yourself, but that's kind of an amazing feat, with all that stress! I don't even get to folding laundry on good days!!!

    You keep pointing out what's wrong, but it looks like you are doing A LOT of things right!!!

  5. Did I make it sound like I finished the dishes and folded laundry and made dinner and dessert? Because I totally didn't. I crashed at the Miller's for the rest of the night while my kids played and I tried to stop hyperventilating.

  6. As Alexander would say, "it's a terrible, horrible,no-good, very bad day--even in Australia!"