I made scrambled eggs for breakfast this morning. Which is NOT the sort of thing that happens around here on a weekday very often. Or, like, ever.
But, looking back, I see that’s where it all went wrong. Or, possibly, right.
My two older boys had a half-day at school, meaning they’d finish their day even before their little brother, at his morning preschool and, more to the point, before our part-time nanny starts her work day. I figured I’d pick them up — one of those great perks of self-employment being that you can have that kind of flexibility when you need it. Then I figured that if I was picking them up anyway, I ought to do something useful with the time, so I finally booked appointments for the vision and hearing tests they were supposed to have. In September.
Naturally, the scheduling of these appointments meant I’d be picking them up even earlier than the noon dismissal time.
So I planned to get them at 11 and be at the eye doctor’s office at 11:30.
With no lunches to pack, I devoted part of the morning to scrambling eggs and cooking veggie sausage and buttering toast and cutting fresh mango.
And I still got them to school on time.
Then I had breakfast with a couple of colleagues to plan a project, went to one quick meeting, got some seriously nasty bird poop washed off the car, checked email from my iphone and then raced to school to get my dudes.
At the eye doctor’s office, things ground to a halt. What I had assumed to be a 5-minute read the letters on the chart kind of affair turned out to be a 2 and a half hour extravaganza of testing, waiting, re-testing, getting horrible eye drops, more waiting and then, ultimately, finding out that my five year old needs glasses.
Leaving aside for a moment the fact that I really should have been more on top of this, I’d like to say that this is the portion of the day where I really shined. (Also, where I had packed the snacks.)
I did not pause. I did not blink. I did not hesitate. I smiled my biggest, proudest smile and told him how exciting it is that he is going to have glasses. Because, you know, it will help distinguish his super hero identity from his regular, everyday one. And because Daddy wears glasses and Daddy is awesome.
He seemed a little unsure about the whole thing at first. But when he got to pick out the ones he liked — and his older brother was FORBIDDEN to even so much as register an opinion — and check out some fabulous kid-glasses features, like the little behind-the-ears things that will keep them on his head even when he is hanging upside down (an incredibly useful feature), he actually started to smile. He was disappointed, even, that he couldn’t wear the sample frames home.
We immediately started planning the “Glasses Day” celebration we’ll be having. You know, with a “Pin the Glasses on the Donkey” game and licorice eyeglasses and candy eyeballs.
And, then, because everyone’s patience at the eye doctor had to be rewarded, I let the boys choose the place for lunch.
At McDonald’s, they got Happy Meals with “Spy Gear” prizes. There was high-fiving and fist-bumping.
Finally, just before 3 in the afternoon, I dropped them off for their appointed rendezvous with their younger brother and our nanny, playing in the park. My little one, age 3, was thrilled to see us. And then he was immediately epically, tragically sad when he realized I wasn’t staying.
I left the park, still listening to his cries of “I Want Mommy.”
In the plan I’d had for the afternoon, I was going to run 3 miles, then shower and then head to a 4 o’clock networking event. In actual life, I was in my running clothes for no apparent reason and drove to the gym with just enough time to change into my dress and get to the event (no shower).
The event, from 4 – 6, was great. I was a featured speaker, so I spoke. And was featured. The dress looked good.
At 6, I faced a dilemma: race home and catch the tail end of my kids’ day; or catch up on some client work that I’d barely paid attention to; or run those three miles.
I went back to the gym, changed back into the running clothes I’d already shed once and did it. Then I showered and came home to three sleeping boys and one nanny who was WAY ready to go home.
At about 8:30, I settled down in front of my computer with a bowl of popcorn to actually start my work day.
Around midnight, my oldest son woke up from a nightmare and came to cuddle with me for a little while, so I took a(nother) break from work.
At 12:30, I picked it back up again. It’s now a little after 2 and I’m just about done or, at least, I’ve quit doing anything of any real value. And the kids are unlikely to be having scrambled eggs tomorrow morning.
The question I’d like to settle, before I grab a few hours’ sleep is this: Was today a good day or a bad one? Did I succeed today or fail?
I have no idea. But I do know that, somehow, tomorrow, the adventure will continue.