5:30 a.m. – at computer writing madly, trying to meet deadline
8 a.m. – cockatoo screams that it’s time to get up. Leave computer and go downstairs to uncover her.
8:02 – swearing ensues. Mine. Kids left shoes, glasses, napkins on coffee table, along with huge blog of brown blorch that I instantly set about cleaning.
8:05 – take glasses and napkins into kitchen. Toss shoes over the Great Divide (boxes that prevent cockatoo from escaping back half of the house to eat whatever antique wood crosses her path in the front half of the house) so cockatoo won’t eat them. Consider briefly allowing cockatoo to go ahead and eat the shoes, until motherly heartstrings wrap themselves around my neck and choke off my air supply.
8:15 – put glasses into dishwasher, convinced children don’t have a clue as to the purpose of this mysterious machine beside the sink. More swearing ensued. For the love of all that’s holy, these brats are 21,23, and 26…who broke their damn fingers? Clean hubby’s dirty dinner dish from last night. Only mildly pissed. After all, it was my idea to whip out a bottle of wine and sing old Three Dog Night songs in the backyard.
8:30 – Eating breakfast of toast and scrambled eggs…cooked to perfection. Ungrateful, piggish cockatoo eats half. Doesn’t clean up the kitchen, so I do the honors.
8:40 – stuff pill down dog’s throat. She hacks it up, and it goes skittering under the couch. Expensive medicine. I move damn couch to retrieve pill, which is now gooey and has hair sticking to it. Wash off pill and stick it and half my arm down dog’s throat.
8:42 – I give in. Give damn dog damn after-the-pill treat. I’m such a sap.
9:30 – got a good few pages written before son #1 needs me to follow him to drop off his car for an oil change. Consider telling him to take my bike – I’m hot on the trail of this chapter. I relent. I’m a mom. I do these things.
10:30 – back to writing after stopping off at store for emergency supply of tampons for daughter. How does this happen? I always had sixteen boxes of those puppies back in the days when such things occupied my frontal cortex.
11:30 – oh for crying out loud. Do I look like I know how to sew a hem? Just because my DNA marks me as a chick doesn’t mean I’m handy. I’m a writer and, therefore, given a pass from anything remotely passing as domestic. Do what all God’s children do, and take the jeans to the cleaner. They know how to hem. Cripes. Fine. I’ll iron the damn shirt because it’s my shirt you’re borrowing, and I don’t want iron burns on the front.
12:40 – finally on a big roll. The words are pouring out of my brain like Hemingway on crack. I’m brilliant, by golly. I'm smellin' the Pulitzer from here! I should…
“Uh, can I take you out to lunch?”
Ah geez. I suck. I’m navel lint. I’m an ungrateful hosebeast. I have the most beautiful kids and husband in the world, who adore me in spite of my tunnel vision during deadline time. They stop their own lives just long enough to remember the little things that will remind me of why I love them. Yeah, dirty dishes and shoes lying around pisses me off. But how can that possibly eclipse a warm, sweet smile, an infectious laugh, a tender hug that says I’m the center of their world, an out-of-the-blue invite to lunch? I swear, writing can make you crazy.
5:00 p.m. – “Yes, sir, I’d like to pick out that lovely straightjacket. Yes, the pink one with lace and pearls.”