I was chatting with a friend yesterday about what our evenings are like, and described it like this. Good lord.
4:45: leave work, Pick up kids
5:05: Pull into driveway, carry carseat, pump, gym bag, dirty lunch dishes and toddler in — he can walk but you have to guide him or he gets distracted
5:10 Almost get run over by the dog at the door
5:30 Finally get dinner on the table after … Taking Jack’s shoes and coat off, taking my shoes off, getting the baby in a bouncy (or I leave her in the carseat), giving her her pill, making dinner (eggs and toast tonight).
6 p.m. Finish begging Jack to eat, nursing Viv, then trying to feed her solids. Watch clock and hope we get done soon enough to get her bathed and in bed before she is overtired and all hell breaks loose.
6:10: Help Jack walk upstairs carrying a book, his water, a blankie or 12, a truck, whatever he wants, while I hold the baby and try to hurry him without yelling at him.
6:15: Give the baby the world’s fastest bath while Jack looks out the bathroom window and/or wreaks havoc in the bathooom (I lock him in there with me).
6:20: Swaddle baby and nurse her to sleep in Jack’s room, while he destroys the room or brings me books to read. Favorite activities incude taking all his diapers out of the basket and throwing them around the room or else taking his pants off and peeing/pooping on the floor. And I can’t do much because I am desperately trying to get her to sleep. GOOD TIMES.
6:30: Get baby in her swing, crank it up, pray.
6:35: Get Jack into the tub.
6:45: Get him dressed and ready for stories.
6:48: Baby cries, go give her her paci
6:50: She is asleep, Jack is running down the hall to see her. Pick him up by the back of his pajamas like a mama cat and hiss at him to NOT BOTHER HER. Jesus.
6:55: Stories with Jack.
Then it goes a few ways … I get 20 minutes to read nicely with him. OR I get 2 minutes, and she starts crying and I let her go until she reaches fever pitch and then put him to bed early. Then I rock her for another 20 minutes while he plays in his bed. And poops. And then I get her to sleep, go back in and change his diaper and get him back to bed, and then change into my pajamas, and then she starts crying again, and I rock her some more, and then he drops his paci just as I get her to sleep and starts screaming and I go replace it, crank her swing, and fall into bed, until 11, when she wakes up again. And then again at 2. And 4. And then they are both up for the day at 6.
And Philip heads to work and I stare down the barrel of a gun, and by that, I mean a long Saturday solo parenting.