Double Dose Days

By Sherri Caldwell

Meaning: Whatever it is you have to take to get through a normal day...well, double it. And even then, on a really bad day, making it to bedtime without a breakdown is iffy at best. When you are barely functional by 6:00 p.m., with two hours to go, it has been a Bad Day. When you've managed to make it through several Bad Days back-to-back, you're entitled to a Double Dose Day. Hopefully you can get it in before total meltdown.

Double Dose Days come on the heels of a succession of events, any one of which would be a challenge on a normal day; in combination, even very small things become overwhelming.

Here's an example:

Tuesday. I took all three kids for haircuts for school picture day on Thursday. The shop was busy, but everything was fine until the end. As we walked across the street to the parking area, Haleigh (age 5) and Tiger (age 2) started fighting over a lollipop. Tiger accidentally pokes Haleigh in the eye--with a finger, not the lollipop. Understand, Haleigh is an Oscar-quality Drama Queen. She pitches a HUGE scene, "My EYE!", in the middle of the street, in traffic. She LOVES public performance. I quickly verify: no blood, no bone, no eyeball hanging out, while dragging them both to the sidewalk and getting them all in the car. The rest of the night, she plays up her injury, requiring much babying and pampering, including dinner on a tray and sleeping in our room.

Wednesday. Haleigh forgets about her wound long enough to get up and get to school, but apparently remembers about lunchtime, when I get the call from the school nurse, worrying that Haleigh has pink eye because her eyes are all red (from rubbing them) and she's so upset (Drama Queen). I go get her, and even though half-hour later she's well enough to "swim" in the hot tub with Tiger, I take her to see the doctor, with Tiger (another Event, in and of itself). She's got a little scratch on her eye, no big deal, although it's written as a "corneal abrasion", with a prescription for anti-bacterial ointment (how am I going to get that in her eye?!) and a patch over her eye, like a pirate (which lasts about an hour before she complains so much I finally let her take it off)

She gets Tiger back on the way out of the doctor's office by pinching his fingers in the door--another very public, very noisy scene: "My pingers!"...two days in a row!

Zach (age 8) has a baseball game Wednesday night, so I rush home to order pizza delivery for dinner and get him ready to go. His uniform is still dirty from his Saturday game because I haven't had a chance to catch up on laundry. Or dishes. I pull his uniform out of the bottom of his hamper, and off he goes with Dad to his ballgame.

Thursday. I take Haleigh in to the doctor for a re-check before school--and although she is fine, it's all downhill after that. Remember, it's supposed to be Picture Day! (Fortunately, that has been postponed.) We are both late to school: Thursday is my volunteer morning in the school library, which is chaos with a big inventory project and a special event that afternoon. I stay longer to help out, call Grammy to pick Tiger up at pre-school.

That afternoon, since I am still at school, I catch Zach before he gets on the bus to go home. We have an hour together before we have to pick Haleigh up from after-school Art Club. We decide to go look at bikes at Target. Unbeknownst to me, Art Club is cancelled. Apparently, they've been announcing it all week, but does my five-year-old bring the message home? Of course not--couldn't they send a note home in her book bag?! Haleigh rides the bus home. We are gone, Vicki isn't home, another neighbor takes her back to the school. I get the call on my cell phone to come to school and get her--two days in a row!

Dinner is Taco Bell drive-thru (too bad they don't have margaritas!). Zach has another baseball game in his dirty uniform, because of course I haven't done the laundry. Or dishes. I haven't been home all day! He has a great night, though, and while I'm home with Haleigh and Tiger driving me NUTS (although I did manage to clean the kitchen and start the laundry), Zach brings home the game ball for an exceptional double-play and great hitting all night. Which I missed.

By the end Thursday night, I'm ready for a Double Dose. Aren't you, too, after reading this?!

That's my life, with three kids, just a series of Double Dose Days. We have next week off from school for Spring Break. We are going to a cabin on the beach in Florida, west coast, down in the middle of nowhere. We are taking kids' bikes and the dogs, and we are SO excited to barbeque every night (four nights) and do NOTHING. Well, except hang out with the kids, break up fights, etc. Hope we can survive all that Quality Time!

© 2003 Sherri Caldwell and The Rebel Housewife, LLC.
All Rights Reserved.

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