Dear Friends

Dear friends,

I haven’t seen you in a while.

We are now at that stage in our friendship where if I run into you in the grocery store, or the doctor’s office, or the cough and cold aisle of Walgreens we have this conversation:

“Hey! How are you? Oh my gosh it’s been too long. We’ve just been busy. Should we get together soon?” And then we never do.

I want you to know it’s not you.

And it’s not me.

It’s them.

Look, if it was just you and me, I’d love to hang out. And one day, we will again. My youngest kid’s first day of kindergarten in five years so let’s schedule a date then, okay?

(Not the first day of school. I’m taking a spa day that entire day. We will hang out the second day.)

When my babies were little and portable and could still each be tucked under an arm and marched out of a playdate-gone-poorly if need be, it was fairly easy to still hang out. I could tuck one in a stroller and one in a carrier and we. could walk. Or I could leave a trough of graham crackers on the kitchen table and watch our kids fight over the one damn truck in a room full of toys while we drank coffee.

But now that they’ve multiplied into three, with three very different schedules, I’m practically under house arrest. My day is basically running around from morning to night (and from night to morning on the days the baby doesn’t sleep through the night which is roughly 395 out of the last 400).

In the morning I wake up, beg my middle kid to go back to sleep because it’s not even six yet. Then after an hour of telling my kids, “just five more minutes!” (Kinda thought I’d outgrow that one now that I’m the mom, but no), I go to enter into the morning battle: empty the dishwasher, pack lunches, find hats and gloves and library books, hopefully remember to brush a few teeth and send them out the door.

(Yes, I could pack their lunches the night before but do you really think that’d make that much of a difference here?)

Then I frantically run around the house trying to clean up. I have no idea how a house gets so messy in a single hour, but there you have it. Do laundry, empty trash cans, wipe whatever the heck that is on the bathroom counter up, and sweep up 75% of the Cheerios that were served for breakfast and are now on the flood.

About halfway through this my baby starts crying she’s ready for a nap, and I attempt to finish my cleanup while dodging her attempts to grab my legs. Finally, I acquiesce and put her down for her nap.

Then it’s time to shower. By the time I get out, 90% of the time she’s already awake. And this is not because I’m taking luxuriously long showers. It’s because she has a sixth sense for when I almost done and bolts awake.

By the time I console the crying baby while still dripping wet, it’s almost time to pick up my son. So I get dressed, look in the mirror (somehow I look exactly the same pre-shower) and head to preschool pickup.

Here, I’ve got about a one hour window to do something is I really want to risk a bad afternoon nap. So if we are out of milk, I might venture in to the store. But with a baby and tired preschooler, there’s no way we are going to be able to hang out.

By the time we get home, it’s lunch. Which means everyone is yelling. Or 2/3 are yelling. The third is still at school. And his pickup is in two hours so if I don’t get the baby down now she won’t have a chance at a decent nap.

Course she never sleeps for the whole two hours. She sleeps 30m (after I rock her for an hour) and then wants to be rocked until it’s five minutes past the time I should’ve left to pick my son up from kindergarten.

So I run to kindergarten pickup. And then, we would be free for a play date except now I have three kids with me and they are all in varying stages of starvation and exhaustion.

Then we enter into the witching hour, named so because your kids expect you to conjure up snacks while cooking dinner. After dinner it’s bath and bed. Everyone’s asleep by 8, so theoretically we could go out for a girls night.

But, after we put the kids to bed, my husband and I like to indulge in our favorite hobby – putting the kids back to bed.

So I promise I’m not avoiding you. I’d love to get together and talk about diapers and the Mueller investigation and spread whatever cold had been plaguing my house for the last three weeks to you and yours.

But it’s not going to happen. At least not while we are on the two-naps, two-school pickups schedule. Please know I miss you.

And let me know if you want in on that spa day. September 2023. Mark your calendar.