2023 SOL: 8 Mornings are Hectic

I have three children. Each is as different as they could possibly be.

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McKenna is a 7 year old girl who is boy obsessed. She loves to do her makeup and agonizes over what the wear each day. Her bedroom regularly looks like a tornado flew threw it due to her need to save all the things. Sometimes she saves something because she thinks she will do a craft with it. Other times it is because it has a special meaning…given to her by a beloved aunt or a new [boy]friend. And sometimes she is just too busy to be bothered to get rid of something. Regardless, her room boarders on an episode of hoarders.

George is 5. He is full of BIG feelings. asking him to wash his hands and brush his teeth earlier this week resulted in a 7 minutes sobbing session because he couldn’t reach the toothpaste. He loves to cuddle and regularly will sneak into my bed long after everyone else has drifted off just to get extra mommy time. He will curl up next to me and bury his face in my neck asking me to rub his back. And although I am exhausted, how can I turn that down. He will leave as quickly as he entered to seek the warmth of his own abandoned bed as if it was all just a dream. He often doesn’t even remember doing this the next day.

Then there is Theo. He is a feral 2 year old Covid baby. He has exactly two gears: lazy lump on a log and crazed over caffeinated monkey. Like his brother, he loves to cuddle. But he will sit for hours. And hours. As long as he is comfortable and there is a screen in front of him…HELLO COUCH POTATO. He asks for cuddles each night before bed and again the in the morning. But really it is just a stalling tactic to delay whatever comes next. Like his gears, he has two reactions to everything: even keeled chill dude or removing your appendix without anesthesia. Fall on the floor and knock out a tooth? I would expect screaming and crying and inconsolable tears. I do not necessary expect it because I threw out his diaper when he wanted to do it. We’ve all become immune to the 11 on a 10 scale reactions of this kid. But newcomers are often quite surprised that the cuddle bug has lost him mind because he found a fuzz on his shirt.

So it should come as no surprise that each of my children respond to that morning wake up for school/daycare with extreme variances.

McKenna wakes with her own alarm. She gets herself dressed, takes care of her bathroom business, makes her own lunch and waits for the bus. She despises extraneous noise in the morning and has been known to stay in her room until I can drag the boys to daycare. She is a bit time blind so needs some reminders to pick up the pace. But for the most part, she is on her own. George regularly chooses to sleep in whatever he is going to wear to school the next day so he can savor those last few moments of sleep. The only thing that can get him out of bed without a fight is the thought he can beat his sister to the bathroom and leave her waiting in the hallway. His little devilish laughter as he slams the door in her face is both hysterical and completely annoying. But ones he’s up, he is usually an angel. Then there is Theo. He rolls over in his bed pulling the blanket up to cover his eyes. He repeats NO NO NO every time you reach for him. He kicks wildly as you wrestle him to the changing table screaming CUDDLE CUDDLE CUDDLE. And when you give in to sit in the rocker for a few minutes, the cycle repeats when you get back up. It is torture.

Mornings leave me with a headache before I can drop the boys off at daycare. I pray for an easy day every now and then. It’s a delicate balancing act to make sure everyone’s physical and emotional needs are met. And days like today are rare. Everyone complied easily. There was little negotiation as I buckled the baby into his carseat…at least compared to usual. And for that, I was grateful.

I am writing for the 16th annual Slice of Life challenge presented by Two Writing Teachers.

1 Comment

  1. I remember telling your mom my house was a little crazy in the morning how did she handle twice the kids. She said it was ok cause soon you’d all be at school and it’d be more quiet for the day.


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