When I worked out in the speech therapy world, Annamary, a PT I knew, would sometimes use the term "drainer" to refer to some of our patients who would drain the energy right out of you, either because they were grumpy beyond belief, or because others would sometimes talk your ear off about no end of compaints and problems... no matter how personal those problems were. I guess sometimes people hear you have "therapist" in your title and assume you can help them with all manner of psychological issue, as well. Well now, Annamary, the old crusty drainers have met their match, with the new, improved, overly-energetic models living with me.
Motherhood is a wonderful journey, but there's a real reason why I'm so tired looking every night, and its not merely from physical exertion. Take today... picture in your mind a lovely scene, two sweet little girls building some apartment-building-like creation with tinkertoys in the livingroom, while I make sandwiches under the watchful eye of my shadow Caleb. The t.v. is tuned to my fave Christian Radio station where people are singing the praises of our Savior, and school is now finished and cleaned-up. Sounds idyllic, right? Now add audio....
"GAAAAAAAAAAH! Mommy, whatchamakin?whatchamakin?WHATCHAMAKIN MOMMY!?" screams Caleb, who is 6 inches from my face watching as I spread peanut butter on bread.
"I'm making PB and J, Buddy."
"Not this time, I just want to get it done"
"WITH PEANUT BUTTER?!"
"Yes, that's why we call it peanut butter and jelly... now can you just watch so I can hear this song... it's Mommy's favorite and I want to hear it"
(from the other room, a girl voice comes shrill-ly from the tinkertoy apartment complex)
"MOMMY! Why do you like this song? What's so great about it? Whyeeeee do we have to listen too-oooo?!"
"Because... I like it and I said so and I really wanna hear... pleeeeeease let me listen!"
(Caleb chimes in) "WHATCHA MAKIN NOW MOMMMY!?"
"Still peanut butter and Jelly, Buddy"
"CANIHAVESOME?! WITH A DRIIIIIIIINK?"
"Yes, Buddy, this one's for you, this is Caleb's lunch"
"WITHADRINK! I WANT WATER! NO MILK. WATER"
(Two more girl voices join in)
"I WANT MILK MOMMY! IN THE PINK CUP! DID YOU HEAR MOMMY? THE PINK CUP"
"I WANT BLUE I WANT BLUE I WANT BLUE I WANT BLUE.... MOMMY ARE YOU LISTENING? I SAIIIIID I WANT BLUE PLEEEEEASE!"
"Ok... just please.... two minutes of quiet please"
(Caleb) "CAN I EAT NOW MOMMY!"
" I no want JAM! NO JAM NO JAM NO JAM! MOMMY? NO JAM!"
"It has to have jam... that's what goes on a peanut butter AND JELLY sandwich... you'll like it, trust me... you eat it all the time for goodness sake"
(All three simultaneously)"I WANT MINE IN TRIANGLES!" "I WANT MINE IN SQUARES!" "I DON'T WANT MINE CUT PLEASE... DON'T FORGET! YOU WON'T FORGET LIKE LAST TIME, RIGHT?! REMEMBER?!"
My song is now long over, and I move all three to the table to serve. This is the pattern that repeats itself so many times over during the day. It's good to be the Mommy... they're cute and squishy and sweet and I love them to death, but it's also good I start the day with a full tank, because these little drainers are suckin the life out of me one loud demanding conversation at a time. And that's where naptime comes in... my tank is fillin up again... will I be ready for the afternoon go-round?