When your husband comes through that door at the end of the day, how many of us are relieved? I’m guessing ALL of us are!!! We are not only pleased to see the man we love but also to have another adult on the premises, am I right? We begin by exchanging a kiss and pleasantries and he asks “What did you do today?”… do you find it hard to answer?
Some days I find it very difficult to answer this simple question. A question asked out of genuine interest or curiosity if the house is in shambles again. (It was clean at some point today I swear but you missed it). Sometimes I even feel when I tell him what I did some of the details sound ridiculous, even to my own ears. Can you relate to this at all ladies? What do you leave out? What do you highlight? How do you condense your answer into a quick couple of sentences that demonstrate that you were not only very busy but also productive? How do you describe it in a way that sounds interesting but not like you’re asking to be nominated for sainthood?
I type this note to you with hands covered in dried fabric glue. It’s Monday and not even noon and I still don’t understand what I’ve done today. Let me set the scene for you. Monday’s are tough..this particular one was no exception. Oh have I had a day..but how much of it do I share with my wonderful husband?
Last Friday my daughter came home with the much coveted class stuffed animal to care for over the weekend. Each child gets a chance to take a turn doing so but doesn’t find out that they’ll have it until that day, the Friday. She was absolutely thrilled to tell me when she got off the bus she had been chosen for this very important job that weekend, not that she had to tell me. The class stuffed dog, whose name is Freddie, was in her arms and so was his suitcase full of clothes and accessories that accompanies him. A large poster and binder were also with her and she was overloaded with joy…and stuff!!!
It was only at this moment that I discovered that not only would we be in charge of taking care of Freddie but we would be documenting the entire process in a class binder. Freddie would be coming along with us everywhere that we went (per the instructions) and we would need to take photographs of these adventures to include in the binder as well. We would also need to fill out a poster about my daughter that would also be due…pause for effect…on Monday morning!!! All of this would be due Monday morning!!! This started off my weekend on an interesting and somewhere more complicated note than anticipated before the bus door opened.
So let’s fast-forward past several outfit changes for the stuffed dog, several moments of stress worrying that we would lose Freddie and spoil the whole class’s future fun while out and about on the aforementioned adventures that we were to document, one report, one poster and a little bit of sanity lost later. Now it was Monday morning and time for the dog and all the items that went with him to be returned. We had made sure Freddie was entertained for three days and now dressed in his latest outfit-a wizard costume, he would be returning to school. Monday mornings are hard enough ladies just trying to organize your kids and all their usual things for school on time but now you add in a stuffed dog and his entourage of gear along with it. This can be pretty challenging for any mother. When I tell you that he came with a lot of items that is not an overstatement. (My daughter would want me to add that it was awesome to be chosen…it was a high honor for the record).
Do I start out telling my husband about my day by sharing that the kids bickered in the car all the way to school? How I had to practically bribe my son to help his sister carry in all of the dog’s various items? How she had sudden last-minute nerves because she was worried about sharing her presentation and I had to give her a quick peptalk in the school parking lot? Do I tell him I sat in my car and watched to make sure that her brother really did help her into the school? How I then waited with a travel mug full of now cold coffee in bumper to bumper traffic to pull away from the school and head home? Where exactly do I start sharing my day with him?
Maybe I should start by telling him that when I arrived home after school drop off I surveyed the chaos that remained in our house from getting everybody off to school. Maybe I should tell him that I spent a full 10 minutes worrying about how her presentation was going to go-because she had been worried I was now worrying for her too. Maybe I should tell him that I didn’t even know in which room I should start in to clean up the house.
Perhaps I should move along to the part where I straightened up the house, started dishes and laundry and made a slight dent in the kids rooms. I should remind him at this point that I had yet to shower and it was coming on 10 o’clock. That I had had several reheated cups of coffee and had still not eaten anything yet..too busy for food or I guess I just kept putting off stopping the work.
How about I move along to beginning to create my daughter’s 100th day of school T-shirt? Yes, the project is assigned to the kids but really moms we know that this project was assigned to us. The shirt is due next week and must contain 100 things. One of the Freddie’s adventures was to come with us to buy the supplies needed to create the T-shirt so I have the supplies to bring my little girl’s vision to life, why not get started?
This is where the fabric glue covered fingers come into the story. (I hope it will come off eventually). I spent an hour and a half individually glueing pom-poms and puffy painting a shirt to create my daughters vision of a popcorn container with popcorn popping out of it. 100 pieces of popcorn represented by 100 yellow and white pom-poms. Leaving the shirt to dry and fighting my fear that the cat might decide to walk across my final product, I finally headed the shower nervously. I hoped when I returned there wouldn’t be an angry and no longer curious cat stuck the garment.
An extremely speedy shower, two packed lunches for tomorrow, a refilled coffee pot and a very brief lunch later it was time for the kids to come home from school. Of course I’d also emptied the dishwasher, folded the clothes and put them away and various other household tasks in between. Not limited to trying to find the mate to one lonely sock that I found lying on the couch. Is it clean, is it dirty? I had just fold the clothes on the side of the couch so it could’ve been either option..this had to be investigated. (Turns out it was clean, I’ll end your suspense).
The school bus dropped off the kids (this time stuffed animal free) and it was on to afternoon snacks, homework, tutoring, music practice, dinner prep, and getting them ready and driving them to karate. I sat at karate school and watched them spar (karate talk for fight/battle) venting some of the frustrations they were feeling that still lingered from this morning I’m guessing. As I watched I was mentally writing an article and physically writing a grocery list.
Now hubby is seeing me and asking me the question at nearly 7 at night. It’s been over 12 hours since we last saw each other and to fully fill him in I would have had to tell him all these details. The stuffed dog argument, the glue, the sock mystery, all of it. What is this really my day? Yes! This was my Monday in a nut shell!
Mothers know that our days are never the same. We have commonality amongst other mothers in this. Each day is different. Our days defy description sometimes. There are things that we’re going to leave out of sharing with our spouses. What I hope is that you get the general point across. That you were busy all day! You are not eating bon-bons in a bubble bath with a soap opera on in the background daily. If you were..well..teach me how you did that please!!
Most likely your creative skills were tested and so was your patience. You were in charge of more than your kids today, you were in charge of the running of this family and everything that that entails. In this blog we talk about so many details in this life of ours- big and small. Some details we share amongst friends and some details we will absolutely share with our spouses if they are important or noteworthy. Some details we will never share and that’s ok!!!
Husbands if you are reading this and your wife answers your question in one word..BUSY…my day was busy. Leave it at that. Believe that it was. Believe that she was taking care of all she could that day. Believe that some things she planned to take care of will have to wait until tomorrow. Know that she gave extra homework help to the kid that needed it. Know that she knew which kid needed extra praise. Know that she gave the hugs, found the lost things, drove to the places, had the snacks and forgot something she was supposed to remember to do (she tried but there was a lot in that brain of hers).
Know too that she’s happy to see you, she missed you. She thought of you as she took care of some of your stuff too-your errands, your ironing, buying your favorite chips at the grocery..etc. She thought of you as she remembered a laugh that you recently shared while tidying up or standing in line at the post office. Your wife thinks of you often during her day as you think of her..in glowing goddess like terms of course.
My advice to you would be to compliment that warm dinner she made that was waiting for your arrival, compliment her hair that she managed to brush..heck, she will accept you noticing she got a shower in today. Tell her you appreciate and love her. Let her tell you what’s on her mind…but don’t ask her to elaborate on her day, a play by play isn’t always necessary or easy to give. Just pour the wine and give her a hug, she will have a new unimaginable day tomorrow full of highs and lows and so will you. You are both working for this family in your own ways, some of them indescribable. Janet