You may be familiar with Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day? Well, "Alexander" (a walking zombie with a cast) just accompanied me from school all the way to the doctor's office and he was a real downer. Following the blissful hours of my first day of freedom, this was quite a shock to the system. Suffice to say the experience was light years away from the hot yoga studio and my coffee earlier with Barbara, Whoopie, Elizabeth and Joy. Admittedly, I did feel a pang in my heart as he recounted his long, tiring day as I, like you, am sad when my child is sad. How does the saying go? You are only as happy as your most unhappy child. I had a very unhappy child this afternoon. (And I was soon to discover, he was not alone…)
"Worst day. This day is just the worst. And I don't foresee it getting better any time soon. This strike is so unfair. It's not me you're mad at and I think it's such a bad idea," proclaimed "Alexander".
You may recall that last night son "Alexander" was the child who was beaming as he cooked up a white plate special (as in everything on the plate is white and processed; bleached white flour, white sugar and dehydrated white potatoes.) Later he topped it off the night with a bowl of Rice Crispies and then went to bed just shy of midnight. His younger brother was enjoying the dinner special as well and kept him company during the late hours of Grammy replays. This morning they both woke up groggy with less than 7 hours sleep under their belts, and they headed off for a full day of school where lunch was, as if by divine intervention, a baked potato bar. Well, between the string of meals over the weekend and today's eating and lack of sleep, certainly "Alexander" and his appearance as he loaded himself into my car, makes sense. Alexander continued on complaining and informed me that he was sent to the office today because he spaced out for 3 minutes in math class as he tried to keep himself awake. He also shared, in an effort to fully disclose the trip to the office (as on occasion, like 3 days a week, I am actually in the Middle School office and talking with the administrators), that he fell asleep more than once today. (Come to think of it, just moments ago his younger brother put his head down as he ate the dinner he prepared with his daddy and I think, though not I'm not completely certain, that he was asleep there for a few moments.) Tears welled up in "Alexander's" eyes. I felt the pang in my heart grow stronger. My poor sweet, one arm-one casted arm, walking zombie, baby. He truly had a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. Strike over?
And then just like a rain shower in the Rainforest, my sympathy ceased. That rush of empathy dried right up. Alexander spoke the words that would have me waving that picket sign from here to kingdom come and all the way to tomorrow's hot yoga class. "Mom, your strike is ridiculous. You made a decision to have kids and to stay home and take care of us. It's a little late to change your mind now, don't you think?" Oh no he didn't. Ooooh yes he did!
I'm heading up to bed. It's 8:30 pm and my novel is calling… More tomorrow unless I trip on one of those garbage bags that have yet to be picked up off the middle kitchen floor.