If I gave you the blow by blow by blow by blow, you’d get tired. Just like I got tired when I was experiencing it firsthand. So, I won’t tell you about every single 1/4″ piece of toilet paper that I found around the house or exactly how many times I swept the floor of craft carnage and hurtled foodstuff. I won’t provide the sheet music for my daughter’s “singing.” (It’s basically one, long, continuous high E, and I know, because I found the exact note on our electric keyboard last night.) I won’t recount every groan and negotiation tactic that accompanied each meal. I won’t ask you to imagine what it’s like to have somebody asking you to explain yourself or do something for them every three to five minutes. Let me just say that six straight days of being home with her little kids does something to a woman. It mutates her DNA.
On the outside, I look like your average 30-something mom. I’m average height. I’m average weight. I blend in with the other moms at the school parking lot. My clothes are usually pretty run-of-the-mill: jeans, a sweater, whatever. Like any mom would, I smile and thank the postman when he admires my children and says, “Got yourself a couple of cuties there!” I look grateful when the waitress knowingly smiles at the beans and rice my toddler has just sent to the floor in one windshield-wiper move of his arm. “He’s a busy one,” I say. On the outside, I still look like my usual self today. On the inside, though? After six days with a 15-month-old and a 5-year-old who’s acting like a 3-year-old, who just had a snit because she didn’t want to get her four-day-old surface abrasion wet for a bath? I actually look more like this:
What’s worse, I actually feel just like this: