Somewhere during my meandering journey to adulthood (I swear, I just thought I was driving to the store to buy a candy bar and somehow I ended up here), I seem to have lost my ability to relax. I don’t know if I left it in one of my drawers at work, or accidentally mailed it off with one of my student loan payments, or if Addie stole it and has been wearing it around school like a hat, like she did with one of my bras once. But it has been missing for ages, and I’ve spent much of my dwindling free time trying to bring it back.
One way I’ve tried to lure my sense of relaxation back is by sending my children to day care when I have the day off work– I generally don’t tell people this very often, because apparently this is the sort of thing Hitler would do with his kids, if he had had any. Any spare moment is supposed to be spent cultivating magical moments with your children, even if you haven’t had time to cut your toenails in six weeks and the scum in the bathtub is starting to become sentient.
But sometimes, you just need that break from the kids in order to appreciate them more. And also, so that they can appreciate you more, because I get the impression that their babysitter doesn’t allow them to perform kamikaze jumps onto her belly while watching Odd Squad on repeat.
Even so, I tend to squander these days off doing the following things:
- Going back to sleep
- Accidentally sleeping until 11 AM
- Feeling extraordinarily guilty about sleeping so late
- Promising to allow myself to relax after completing “a few chores”
- Suddenly become enamored with the idea of DECLUTTERING, REORGANIZING, REPAINTING, COLOR CODING AND ALPHABETICALLY FILING EVERY TOY MY CHILDREN HAVE EVER OWNED
- Look at the clock to realize that it is time to pick up the girls, and instead of relaxing, I have just created a giant mess and solved nothing
- Wistfully remembering the hours upon hours I used to spend doing nothing at all while the song “I Will Remember You” plays in the background (I like my flashbacks set to music)
Today is Presidents Day, though, my husband had the day off, too, so he was there to temper my irrational need to perform necessary work around the house. And so, under his tutelage, I managed to sleep in, eat breakfast for lunch, and marathon obscene amounts of TV. The chores, he reminded me, will be there another day. This day is all about honoring our founding fathers with sloth, pancakes, and five episodes of The Americans.
I don’t know if this means my ability to relax has returned entirely, but it definitely made an appearance today. I hope the same can’t be said for Addie’s bra hat…