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There’s a reason these kids have their nicknames, part 2

We were at a birthday party the other day for some friends we made at Future Cult Leader’s school. School rocks like that. We met Monsieur Stoic there so the 4 of us could hang in the pool like a real live family before the group of cool people headed out to the park to enjoy pizza, cake, playground scuffles, and watching the birthday kids open their peace offerings gifts.

Now that Evil Genius is older I feel comfortable letting her play at the park without being within 20 feet as long as there is no street she can dart out in. Which is ridiculous, because out of the two, Future Cult Leader is most likely to do that. As this was in a quiet parking lot, I hung out with Stoic and the all the other parents at the party. Suddenly, blood curdling screams. I recognized them as Evil Genius’s and as I walked to figure out why World War Three was about to start I saw her surrounded by a bunch of kids, Cult Leader included. As Cult Leader has this thing about not respecting other people’s bodily autonomy I assumed she was forgetting that when her sister is screaming at her it means HOLY HELL STOP WHAT YOU’RE DOING OR SHE’S GOING TO BITE YOU.

“Cult Leader, when she’s screaming like that it means she–”

I stopped, as I was close enough to see a quarter sized bruise, red and blue mottled and raised about 1/8 to 1/4 inch next to Genius’s left eye. I grabbed her and speed walked back to the party so I could attempt to calm my hysterical daughter and maybe try to get her some pain relief. You know what 3 year olds hate? Ice packs. They also hate a bunch of not so familiar people crowding around them, which all the other moms were doing because BABY! HURT! MUST FIX IT!

No one but the kids around her at the time know what really happened. Last year at a birthday party Genius tripped on her skirt and fell backwards, head over heels, off a metal slide, smacking her head on the stairs on the way down. After 10 minutes she stopped crying and it was obvious she was fine. This time, the crying didn’t subside easily so Stoic and I decided he would take her to the walk in clinic in the next town over while I stayed with Cult Leader until after the party was over. Then I would take her to his parents’ house and join him.

Then I got a text that they were referring her out to the children’s hospital in Portland for a cat scan.

I decided it wasn’t important to stay so I went to grab my keys…and realized my keys were in the diaper bag. Super Friend, to the rescue! She drove Cult Leader and me to The In-Law’s then dropped me off 22 miles from our hometown so I could hang out with husband and kid in the ER.

Fortunately, they determined she didn’t need a cat scan. Just some ice and TLC. We came home and promptly went to bed, but not until we’d taken a picture of Genius’s face.

This is what it looked like when we got home (Band-aid for decorative/bribery purposes only):

This is what it looked like the next morning:

And this is what it looked like that afternoon:

Evil Genius, being who she is, asks to be taken to a mirror or see pictures of her face. Anytime we comply she cackles hideously. I’m beginning to think this kid could scare Dick Cheney.

Folks, I give you exhibit B.

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Things have been busy in the last 6 months.  Hell, thing have been busy in the last year.  In fact, the last year has been a difficult one, which is why I’ve been so scare on the posts.  It’s hard to write humorously when you’re mired in shit.  That doesn’t mean that I’m not finding humor in my life, or that I’m focusing only on the bad times…just that I’m finding it difficult to take some of our everyday situations and turn them into a funny commentary on parenting, relationships, mental illness, atypical neurology, and what raging assholes 3 year olds are.  Actually, that last one might not so so hard to write…

In the last year, I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, have had to readjust my expectations and my life based on my body and the medications I have to take to prevent irreversible joint damage, started weekly psychiatry appointments for Future Cult Leader to get a handle on her anxiety, ADHD, and daily meltdowns, I’ve struggled with my bipolar disorder, helped my mother after her surgeries (plural, with another one likely coming up) and the after effects of those surgeries (MRSA flare!), dealt with my aging grandmother’s progressing Alzheimer’s disease, hospitalization, moves to different homes and a rehab center for her severely broken shoulder and subsequent surgery, and other minor annoyances that are just part of life that have complicated some of the above events.

On the good side: Future Cult Leader is safely in a healthy weight range, has become a lot easier to handle, Evil Genius has made strides learning how to use the bathroom like a human being (no diapers, holla!), I’ve made some awesomesauce friends, gotten addicted to Words With Friends, had the privilege of officiating the marriage of 2 close friends, have managed a couple times to get my joint pain under control, have strengthened my relationship with Monsieur Stoic (today marks the 6th year anniversary of the day we became a couple), turned 30 (fuck yeah, 30!), have improved my photography skills (maybe eventually I can turn it into a career…who knows?), done a bit of traveling, and I’ve gotten to know my long lost brother who recently moved to Oregon from the Easy Coast to attend Oregon State University.  So it hasn’t been all bad.

Tell me, readers…how has your last year been?

So. You had a bad day.

Last night and the night before, Future Cult Leader had a hard time sleeping.  Sleep deprivation is a no-no in this one.  Then, today at school, Future Cult Leader got her hands on something with artificial food dyes and ate it.  Artificial food dyes make her bonkers.  In fact, under the right conditions they practically negate her medications.

You see that part about the tired?  HEY LOOK, IT’S THE RIGHT CONDITIONS.

It’s hard, when you’ve been doing all this extra stuff that moms with typical kids don’t do, to feel like all your effort has been for nothing.  And that’s exactly how I felt today.  It’s all for nuthin’.  Dammit.

I have 2 choices: I can curl into a corner and cry and eat lots of crappy food.  (Done.)

Or.

I can dance.

But, I’m exhausted.  So I’ll do the next best thing: watch a video of me dancing that I’m going to (kind of) show to you.  I apologize that it’s just the link.  It’s too late to upload it to YouTube and since I’m cheap and use free wordpress.com I don’t have some of the nifty features other blogs have.  Then again, those blogs don’t have this video.  Ha!

I can’t believe I’m posting this for all to see.

Out of the mouth of babes, part 1

While I was at our favorite national big box store picking up some new granny panties killing some time on the way to pick up Future Cult Leader from school, I found a mini spiral notebook in one of their dollar bins.  As one of Cult Leader’s favorite past times is writing the Great American Novel, I bought one so I can live off her royalties encourage her love of the written word.  After I presented it to her, this happened:

“Guess what I have for you?”

“What?  CANDY?!”

“Nope.  I have this notebook for you.”

“Is this for me?”

“Yup.  All yours!”

“So now I have my very own diarrhea?”

Yeah, baby.  Your very own diarrhea.

It’s like it causes him physical pain to speak in coherent sentences

Monsieur Stoic has this terrible habit of forgetting that I am not his brother. See, they’re identical twins. This means I have nearly embarrassed myself a couple of times by almost grabbing my brother in law’s ass because the two of them often dress alike, completely coincidentally, so unless you’re paying super close attention to the tiniest of details it’s easy to confuse them from behind. Or while being bounced between them on a trampoline. But that’s another story.

As it usually is with twins, they have their own form of communication. They may not have the full extent of the twin ESP you hear about, but they can get by using only a couple words at a time and understand each other perfectly. I guess that kind of shorthand comes naturally when you’ve been womb mates. The problems is this: I didn’t share a placenta with my husband. I need more than 2 words to know what it is he wants. We’ve been a couple for 5 years, but that isn’t long enough for me to decipher his cryptic ass messages.

The other day, in order to make the house presentable for the photographer to come get some photos of the house so we can con someone into buying it, we needed to remove an extension ladder that leaned on the balcony off our bedroom. It was a 2 person job to take it out to the shop, so like a good little wife I agreed to give him a hand. “Walk it backward,” he told me. “It’s heavy.” As that was all he said to me, I assumed he wanted me to walk backward with the ladder, facing him, like one would help carry a table or a couch.

Nope.

Stoic grabbed the ladder, straightened it, and started moving it. The feet started to come off the ground, so I grabbed the ladder at that end and tried to move backward with it. “No, don’t grab it. Walk it backward!”

“I’m trying!”

“No you’re not!”

“DUDE. YES, I AM.”

“No, walk it backward.”

“Like put it upright and make the ladder walk backward?”

“No. Like this.” He proceeded to demonstrate by holding the ladder at a diagonal angle and walking backward while keeping the ladder stationary, moving his hands as though he was on monkey bars. The ladder’s feet never lifted off, and the ladder wound up safely on the ground. Oddly enough, he did this just fine without my help.

“Wait. So you wanted me to guide the ladder down to the ground so we could put it on its side to carry it?”

“Yes.”

“So why didn’t you just say that? I’m not your womb mate. I need more than 2 words to know what to do.”

That same day, Future Cult Leader was Losing Her Shit last night in pretty epic form. A few days ago I swore that the next time she threw a fit I would take video to show her later and, okay, to get some validation by showing the video to people and going AND YOU THOUGHT I WAS EXAGGERATING. Since I needed to step back from her, I thrust her writhing body into Stoic’s arms so he could take her to tantrum in her bed where she wouldn’t get hurt or hurt someone else. Five minutes into their time upstairs, I get a text.

“Video?”

I stared at the words, trying to figure out what he meant. So I tapped out “what?” and hit send.

“The tantrum.”

Perhaps it was because I was so rattled by the force of Cult Leader’s fury over a dinner she refused to eat, even though she didn’t actually know what it was, but I couldn’t figure out what he was trying to say. Was she Losing Her Shit because I had mentioned we could rent a video soon and didn’t run straight to the nearest Red Box to pick one up? Of course, this would be more than adequate to send to Womb Mate, who probably wouldn’t have even needed the second text.

I responded. “Stop speaking in sentence fragments, please.”

He came back with “want to video the tantrum?”

SERIOUSLY. WHAT WAS SO HARD ABOUT THAT.

I’m going to be surprised if I’m not hog tied to a chair by Friday

The kids are kicking my ass.

Monsieur Stoic is out of town. He’s in Miami doing hookers and blow with his brother watching the Atlanta Braves play the Florida Marlins and trying not to get struck by lightening. So while he’s off partying like it’s 1999 hanging with his Wombmate in a sub tropical locale, I’m getting destroyed by the Terror Tag Team. But fair’s fair, because I took off with my best friend in June to bake and play tourist on the Oregon Coast.

(I should probably come up with a pseudonym for her soon. Hmmm.)

Normally, it wouldn’t be *that* big a deal to be outnumbered. I mean, yeah, these kids are a handful. Future Cult Leader by herself is relentless, especially after the Ritalin wears off. And Evil Genius is 2, okay? Two. Do you know what they say about the twos? They say that they’re terrible. And while Evil Genius’s 2s aren’t nearly as bad as some other 2s I’ve seen, she’s still 2. What do you get when you put a 2 year old and a post-Ritalin 6 year old together? Let me put it this way: if the child-adult ratio is 2:1 for longer than 12 hours, my house will start to resemble Vancouver after the Canucks lose the Stanley Cup. But while my kids have a difficulty level somewhere between hard and expert, I’m used to the chaos and don’t usually mind the mess. I could do without the violence, though. I’m also smug enough to say that parents with kids that are mellow would probably be full blown alcoholics when confronted with my kids; I only need a daily pot of coffee, weekly therapy appointments, and a handful of psychotropic drugs to get through the day. (Oh, wait…)

Now, let’s add a few ingredients to the mix. First off, Evil Genius has a yeast infection in her mouth. She can’t eat, isn’t sleeping well because she no longer has her pacifier to fall back on, is super clingy, and just randomly bursts into tears because “Mama, mouth owwwwwwww”. Second off, I can’t bliss out on my Ambien with Stoic gone. The night he left, my insomnia showed up at my front door with a couple of kegs, a bunch of E, some glow sticks, and 200 of its closest friends. Third, Stoic’s absence is a disruption in Cult Leader’s life. She doesn’t like disruptions. And that was what we call an understatement.

So. To review: 6 year old who comes home from day camp just as her stimulant drug wears off. Super pissed all the time because we moved an object to the left a little and won’t let her change it back. Terrible twos with a mouth plague that’s taken her drug away from her without the help of methadone; becomes incapacitated when not clinging to her mother’s neck. I’m “it” but my own severe sleep deprivation tends to mean I Lose My Shit, but I can’t Lose My Shit because I’m being held captive and tortured by the Terror Tag Team and the moment I blink the terrorists win.

If I don’t make it out alive and intact: I’ve had a hell of a run. And can someone do me a favor and burn all those old journals from high school for me? Those don’t really need to be floating around once I’m gone.

Rolling out the Welcome Home! mat

Future Cult Leader comes home today after a week at her bio dad’s house. Here’s a list of things I didn’t miss when she was gone:

Cooking full fat meals
Since on a good day, Cult Leader weighs as much as a top of the scale 3 year old, we can’t cook the low fat meals I want so I don’t wind up looking like one of the hot air balloons that fly over our bedroom at 6 AM. Sure, I could make my meal or her meal separately, but I’m already playing goalie in the game of kids. Making a separate meal would be like trying to play pitcher at the same time.

Yelling
I know, I know, I deserve to be publicly flogged for admitting that I yell. I remember mentioning to my sister in law that we sometimes yelled upstairs for Cult Leader to get in bed and go to sleep (though, that was more laziness than anything; we didn’t want to get off our asses and go upstairs) and she gave me this horrified look, like WHO LET YOU HAVE CHILDREN as she asked me, dismayed, “Wait, you yell at your kids?” Yes. I yell. And honestly, I haven’t yelled since Cult Leader has been gone. Well, that’s not true. I’ve yelled upstairs to Monsieur Stoic, and once when Evil Genius grabbed a knife out of the dishwasher. No one is perfect, so suck it. It’s one of those parental flaws I try to work on daily.

Shit losing
I don’t know if you know this, but tantrums are common in kids with ADHD. Between all the stimuli they experience (if you Google “Misunderstood Minds” and click the link that says “attention”, you can get a taste of what it’s like to be my daughter. I’d include the link but I tried that and WordPress won’t let me and I’m not smart enough to figure it out) and their impulsive nature, their emotional volatility tends to be higher than that of their peers. Cult Leader has a tantrum a day, and there’s nothing that can be done to stop them. Not dealing with them has been a relief.

Nit picking
Evil Genius and Cult Leader fight and bicker and HOLY CRAP MAN. You’d think that a 4 year age difference would make a difference, but they fight just as much as kids 2 years apart. One of these days, the fighting is going to escalate into World War III, and I shudder to think about the results. Cult Leader could easily start an uprising against the Evil Genius, but Evil Genius could plot some sneaky counter attacks. It’s entirely possible she wouldn’t even need help. She’s way more likely to get her hands dirty than Cult Leader, because Cult Leader would just get someone else to work for her.

MOTORMOUTH
The great thing about conversations in the car with Cult Leader is that you never have to say a word. The bad thing about conversations in the car with Cult Leader is you never have the chance to say a word.

Exhaustion
Honestly, Cult Leader was more work than Evil Genius when Evil Genius was a baby. Oh sure, the reflux made the baby almost unbearable, but at least I could strap her to my chest as a solution. Well, and the 20 minute snippets of sleep at night sucked ass. But that was mindless. Cult Leader takes a lot of mental, emotional, and physical energy. She sucks it out of you, and I think even uses it herself.

It might sound like we were happy to get rid of her, and we were. Believe me, the need for a break was mutual. She was not at all heartbroken at leaving us for a week, although part of that might be because her older sisters were there for the week, too, and they are way more fun than we are. But we’re also really happy to get her back, and she’s ready to come home. The house was empty–and too quiet–without her.

Since we’ll be on a road trip having hotel sex and playing on the Oregon Coast for the next few days, I probably won’t post much, if anything. Enjoy the break!

Get it off me!

I know some moms do a load or 5 of laundry every day, but I’ve always been a person with a laundry day. I much prefer to get it done in one shot than to spend time every day folding clothes. Oh sure, I could have Monsieur Stoic do it, but his way of doing laundry is appalling and makes me twitchy. In fact, on the rare occasion he does do laundry, I write him out detailed instructions because I’m a control freak who can’t let go. Or something like that.

Part of having kids is buying clothes, so we went to a department store some time last week to return a couple items that sucked and pick up some things that don’t suck. Since Future Cult Leader has this thing where she grows taller and taller, she’s heading straight for the girls 7-14 section. This both excited and saddened me. It’s sad because, oh hey, last section before the juniors section! And what’s in the juniors section? Clothes that I don’t find appropriate for girls under the age of 18! The excitement? Came from my hatred of glitter.

Fucking glitter. It was an awful Mariah Carey movie (erms…from what I heard, anyway), everyone jokes about how it’s the dumb way for shit to go down when vampires from crappy series that have a cult following step into the light, and like Dimitri Martin said, it’s art herpes. It gets everywhere, and you can’t fucking get rid of it. Why is this relevant? BECAUSE CLOTHING COMPANIES PUT GLITTER ON LITTLE GIRL CLOTHING. My god, I think I’ve even found it on little girl underwear. WHO NEEDS GLITTER ON FREAKING UNDERWEAR WHEN YOU’RE 5? TELL ME. I REALLY WANT TO KNOW.

It’s like the people who manufacture clothing are soooooooooooo desperate for your money that they’re pimping out their shirts however they can. Or jeans. JEANS. It’s not enough to be cover the body and maybe be stylish. HEY, BUY OUR SHIT. WE NEED MORE CIGARETTES AND HOOKERS OVER HERE. Put glitter on a little girl shirt and you can guarantee that most little girls who walk by are going to pull this number:

“*GASP*! Authority-figure-who-has-taken-me-shopping-and-made-the-mistake-of-walking-by-the-girls-clothing-section, see that shirt? It’s glittery! It’s so pretty! Please please please please buy it for me! I really really want it! I’ll do anything for it! You want me to kiss your toes? I’ll lick the bottom of your foot if you just buy me that shirt! All the kids are wearing shirts with glitter on them, it’s so shiny and beautiful and please please please please?”

My girls are not girly girls. I don’t have a problem with this, because kids should get dirty and wrestle and play hard and jump and not worry about getting dirty or breaking a nail. Don’t get me wrong. Cult Leader loves herself a pretty dress, and Evil Genius loves to put on pretty shoes and every article of clothing she can hijack, but then they go outside to roll around in the mud, much like Scrooge McDuck would roll around in money. Danger? They laugh at it. Getting loud and rowdy? Yup. Non stop activity? Hell yes.

But if you show them a shirt with glitter on it, that’s the only shirt in the world they want and will stop at nothing to get it. Even the 2 year old is attracted to glitter, kind of like a magpie. Those clothing companies, they addict them young. So I figured, hey. Once we hit the big kids section, THERE WILL BE NO MORE GLITTER. What self-respecting 7 year old wants glitter on her clothes?

The shirts Stoic picked out for Cult Leader? COVERED IN MOTHERFUCKING GLITTER.

I can’t escape it. That shit is my lot in life. And the worst part about glitter covered clothes? They make more glitter covered clothes. I can shake the hell out of mine and Stoic’s clothes when they come out of the dryer but since glitter is like herpes, or worse than herpes, we’ll still find it when we put the clothes on, or 10 washes later.

If I was ambitious, I would start an anti-glitter campaign. Because no one’s lint trap should look like this:

All that glitters isn't gold. It's annoying.

She be trolling hard

You know how, on the internet, you get that one person who is a deliberate asshole? They post stupid responses to posts, they post the dumbest things to incite anger and frustration, or to annoy the other people in the community/message board. They usually get dog piled by the naive and unsuspecting until…

“You guys, it’s a troll. Stop feeding the troll.”

Future Cult Leader is a real life troll.
 

 

Exhibit 1:

“Hey, it’s time to empty the dishwasher.”

“Okay.”

She works for a little bit and then…

“Mooooooooom” she stretches this out into a 5 syllable word “I don’t know where this gooooooooooeeeeeees.” Another 5 syllable word.

“Cult Leader, what is it?” Maybe she thinks it’s something else.

“A glass bowl.”

“Okay, where do the glass bowls go?” Trying to help her solve her own problem.

“I don’t knooooooooooooooooooow.”

“But you’ve put them away lots of times before.” Logic to jog her memory.

“I don’t remeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeember.”

I give her The Mom Look. No nonsense attitude, GO.

“I really don’t knoooooooooooooooooooow.”

“Look, knock it off. Put it away.” My frustration is increasing. I’m thinking, good grief, kid. This isn’t your first rodeo.

She walks over to the part of the kitchen where the glass bowls go. “Mommmmmmmmmmmmmmeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee I don’t know where it goes and if I don’t know where it goes and I can’t put it away and then I can’t empty the dishwasher and then I guess I’ll have to go outside to play without doing my choooooooooorrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrruh.”

Holy hell. “Stop. Now. Go put it away. You’re not leaving this kitchen until you put it away.” I can feel my blood pressure rising.

“BUT I DON’T KNOW WHERE IT GOES.”

My chest gets all tight as my fuse ignites. I had been feeling productive and was excited about getting stuff done, and my 6 year old is cock blocking me.

“PUT IT AWAY NOW, OR I WILL PAY THE GYPSIES TO TAKE YOU.” Not a creative threat, as far as threats go, but it’s my go to and it usually gets the job done. I think she’s afraid I can actually do something like that.

“I *CAN’T* PUT IT AWAY BECAUSE I DON’T KNOW WHERE IT GOES!”

That’s when I notice the look on her face. Oh, she knows what she’s doing. I’m on to her.

“If you don’t put it away, I will ruin your day.”

She harrumps and puts the bowl away. Fucking troll.

“Hey. Lock the cabinet so Evil Genius can’t get in there.”

“I don’t feel like it.”

“DO. IT.” I’m trying so hard to be firm without sounding like I’m ready to HULK SMASH.

“She can open the lock anyway.”

“No, she can’t.”

“Yes, she can.”

“Stop arguing with me and lock the cabinet.”

“NO.”

“GET IT DONE.”

“BUT IT’S POINTLESS.”

Cue my head exploding.
 

 

Exhibit B.

I am in the bathroom, enjoying my morning poo. See, I like pooing. For the longest time I didn’t do it regularly. Then I got regular and there’s nothing quite like a great bowel movement. Plus, it affords me 5 child free minutes.

Future Cult Leader bursts in, because stupidly, I have not locked the door. I’d had a 2 month period where I locked the door to prevent getting interrupted and figured my days of getting walked in on were over. Inevitably, the first time I don’t lock the door is when a child decides their needs come before my morning poo. I caught the door and shut it before she could step in.

“NO. I’m using the bathroom.”

“But I have to go potty real bad!”

“Then go upstairs. I’m busy.”

“I don’t wanna go upstairs!”

“Child, there are 5 other toilets in this house. Go use one of them.”

“NoooOOOOOOoooooo.”

“Cult Leader, you are not coming in here. Go somewhere else.”

No. She waited. I could almost see the internet troll face on her when I opened the door.

 

 

Example III

It’s time to get Cult Leader out of the shower. I knock on the shower door while speaking pleasantly to her.

“Time to get out!”

Nothing.

“Baby, time to get out, or I’m opening the door” which is something she hates, because all of a sudden she likes her privacy. Fine, I support that. But not when she’s not listening.

I pull open the door, and she stands there, staring at me. I’m having a stare down with a 41 pound child. I reach over to turn off the water, while continuing this futile staring contest, when she throws her hand out and pounds the knob. Lightening quick, this kid is.

“Great! Wring out your hair please.”

The stare continues.

“WRING out your HAIR.”

She slowly brings her hands to her hair and runs them over her head. About a gallon of water falls out of her thick, dirty blonde locks.

“Awesome! Step out so we can dry you off!” I am remaining cheerful because, dammit, showers shouldn’t be this hard.
She slowly picks her foot up, as though she’s in a vat of Jello, and gingerly steps on the carpet. She stands with one foot in, one foot out.

“GET OUT.”

She steps out, I get her dried off, and she gets into her underwear. I help her into her dress and then prepare her tights for application.

“Hokeeeeee, love. Sit down, please.”

She starts pushing on the walls. Sitting does not happen.

“HEY. What did I ask you to do?”

“Sit down.”

“What are you doing?”

“Standing and trying to shove the walls down.”

“Why are you standing and trying to shove the walls down?”

“Because it’s the opposite of sit.”

“Opposite?” I’m baffled. She picked out her outfit; I stupidly assumed she would be excited about getting it on.

“Yes.”

“Why would you do the opposite of what I tell you?”

“Because it’s fun to make you mad!”

SEE, YOU GUYS? SHE’S A TROLL.

Addiction?

If you haven’t been living under a rock, then you’ve heard of the bestseller Go the Fuck to Sleep by Adam Mansbach. If you have been living under a rock, you can listen to Samuel L. Jackson make love to the words until it’s taken down for copyright violation:

Story of my damn life.

Everyone knows that you don’t sleep with a newborn in the house. Honestly, they should have a warning that pops up after that second pink line on the pee stick comes up.

(Why is it pink?!)

WARNING: YOU WILL NEVER SLEEP AGAIN. YEAH, THE INFANT PHASE SUCKS AND YOU WILL PROBABLY BE A WALKING ZOMBIE FOR THE FIRST 3 TO 6 MONTHS. BUT THE TRUTH IS, THE NEXT TIME YOU WILL HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO SLEEP THROUGH THE NIGHT YOUR BODY WILL BE TOO OLD TO ENJOY IT BECAUSE YOU WILL BE WAKING UP EVERY 2 HOURS WITH ACHY JOINTS, A FULL BLADDER, AND SCIATICA FROM HELL.

If you’re like the other uptight pricks out there, you’re thinking gee, if you hate your kids so much, why did you have them? Who said anything about hating my kids? I freaking love my kids! I just want them to sleep, for the love of brown rice, sleep! Here’s the thing. If I don’t get enough sleep, I Lose My Shit. My kids? They don’t like to sleep. The Future Cult Leader was a great sleeper as an infant, but as she’s grown into her disorder she’s come up with insomnia. The other night? Fourteen visits upstairs. And before you go saying I must be letting my child walk all over me, let me say this: military style torture would not have broken this kid. Evil Genius didn’t sleep for her first 6 months (thanks, reflux!), and even after that we were lucky to catch a 4 hour stretch. Even now, after almost 2 years of life, there are nights she wakes up 10 times. And early. Oh god. Those two are a terror tag team of pre-dawn waking. Both of them need 11-12 hours, and when they don’t get that, they tend to Lose Their Shit. If I haven’t slept and they haven’t slept, then all three of us are Losing Our Shit.

The last few days, Monsieur Stoic’s family has been Without Their Shit. Cult Leader defiantly refuses to sleep, Evil Genius has a hacking cough that wakes her up every 2 hours, and I’m in the middle of a psychiatric med switch so YAY! my sleep aid is no match for the adjustment period. Lucky for us, Monsieur Stoic can clean the house, do his work, play with the kids, run the errands, cook a meal, seduce me, and mow the yard on 5 hours of sleep, all without smudging his lipstick. It sucks, though, because then his family is hanging out and they’re all shitless.

Honestly, the man deserves an award for not Losing His Own Shit.

I like coffee. I drink it a lot. I drink about a pot a day, which some people, like my therapist, say is too much. But you know what? It’s entirely possible that coffee is what’s holding my marriage together during these shitless days. You can take my coffee…but you’ll have to pry it out of my cold, dead, shitless hands.