Does it ever feel like you spend the entire day in the kitchen?
Breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks and desserts in between. Oh, and drinks. Then there’s the cleanup from all this work. There are days when the kitchen is your companion more than your full-time working husband.
Today, I didn’t want the kitchen to be my friend. I didn’t want to adult, let alone mother. I was grouchy and sleepy.
I was human.
And being human, plus trying to mother definitely made getting any writing done quite hard.
Do you have those days, too?
The morning started in the kitchen, breakfast. Cereal for the boy and oatmeal for the girls. My toddler watched TV while I fed her, making me wonder about my parenting skills. But she ate a healthy breakfast without fuss. Lose and win.
Did I Write?
Then it was time to make lunch, which means the kitchen. Again. I unloaded the dishwasher just to reload it with breakfast bowls, then started slicing bacon and chopping carrots for split pea soup while the kids played (fought) in the living room next to me. I sent up a silent prayer that they would eat, or at least taste the green, healthy liquid. They did.
But we watched Moana with lunch. 2 steps forward, one step back.
Then came rocking the toddler for her nap. I turned on her favorite music to fall asleep to: a Ukrainian rock band. She definitely has my husband’s taste in music; I love it. And sleep came.
It was finally time to write.
The computer was open, my hands ready when my little boy came to me.
“Mom, my neck hurts,” he said. My heart cracked. I gave him hot tea of his choosing, some medicine, and plenty of kisses. He wanted to play with me and my heart tore a little more, but I really did need to get some work done.
Sometimes we must stick to our goals and keep consistency consistent.
“Want to draw beside me and drink your tea while I write?”
He smiled, but the deal was I had to tell him what to draw. I gladly did. A car and a rocket were made as I edited a story for Medium, found the perfect picture and hit submit. My husband walked in the door for a lunch break. How is it they always see you when you’re sitting for the first time?
Technically none, just edited.
In need of spending more time with my sweet little kiddo, but seriously not wanting to play a game or have him watch more cartoons (yet), we made lemon ricotta muffins. In the kitchen. Again. My daughter woke up just as I closed the oven door.
After I cleaned up the dishes and wiped a poopy butt, it was time to start dinner. By this point, I was ready to cry. I didn’t want to be in the kitchen anymore. But healthy, homemade meals for my kids is a priority. So, I cooked. Again.
Then we watched TV. Again. But this time the husband was home. Which meant I fell asleep on the couch with one kid sitting on my hip and the other poking my face.
I woke up and realized it was past bath time. We raced around only to find the bathtub occupied by the now-clean dog. Frustration boiled, and grumpy words ensued as the dog trotted out of the bathroom and I undressed the kids. They were so cute splashing in the tub but I kept thinking about the plates in the sink.
After a day of cleaning the kitchen, the dishes were still not done.
Oh, and the laundry from yesterday still hadn’t been put away. At least I folded it.
On to bedtime yogurt and one last home showing of Moana as I washed the dishes. I heard the vacuum hum downstairs and tears formed in my eyes. I love my husband.
Medicine for the kiddo’s sore throat, bedtime kisses, and lullabies in the dark. The tiny humans fell asleep.
Well, you know.
Finally, I laid on the bed and gave my husband a bear hug, squeezing him tight. Much needed after a long day. Then I began the battle within myself: to write or not to write.
Did I want to?
Heck no, and heck yes.
I forced myself to grab the computer, not turn on Netflix and now pound away at these keys, hoping that sharing my day with you may help you realize you are so not alone.
Motherhood is hard. So is writing.
But you know what?
Every moment spent not writing today was worth it.
The giggles as I tickled my kids. The smiles as they ate their muffins (even though my daughter insisted Grandma made them. Goofy girl.) And the amazing hug between a husband and a wife. These powerful times are needed to inspire words. To make us better people and mothers.
And better writers.
I’m not saying I have the most difficult life. I don’t. Comparisons only hurt. But things can get to you no matter what kind of life you lead. We’re imperfect people, even us mothers.
So, please don’t forget to take a break. Get yourself out of the kitchen for a while.
Yes, keep consistency, but take care of yourself.
Let your family help you if you have them. Don’t feel bad about the unwritten words throughout the day. Do it later if you must. First, take care of yourself so you can take care of your kids and writing will happen if you make it, even on the days you just don’t want to.
Now it’s time for bed, the TV on again, this time for the husband.
And guess what?
Words written? YES.
And it’s possible for you, too.
Oops. Even if your folded laundry has to wait one more night in the hamper.