Getting, and feeling, lost

For a “softer” look, she should loosen the hair from her ponytail. Makes ALL the difference.

This past Sunday was kind of a rough one for me.

We just hung around at home, mostly, but I’d had a long, demanding week at work; taking care of Neve and Lily was draining enough that I never got the chance to shower or brush my hair or teeth; the short yoga pants I wore were also worn during the previous night as pajamas, and they were stained with Neve’s milk spit-up; and I had a headache, so although Joe managed to give me time for a nap, I still grumped around and snapped at everyone intermittently.

I was feeling sorry for myself, and empty, and subhuman. It seemed that over the course of just a few years, I’d become a woman whose entire life, outside of work, consisted of nothing but repeatedly pulling Neve down from the coffee table (where she perpetually longs to “surf”), negotiating meals with Lily (“How many bites ’til I’ve eaten a good dinner?”), and countless Sisyphean domestic details.

I stared longingly at the untouched Sunday New York Times on our kitchen table, remembering when I had the time and freedom to read it through, and go for a long run, and talk with my husband about the articles I’d read. I used to be interesting, I thought. I used to read have Sundays filled with rest and joy. And more generally, I used to travel and read entire books (that didn’t have talking bunnies or ducks) and see my girlfriends and take occasional, two hour bike rides.

So although Joe had planned to make a stir fry for dinner on Sunday night, he looked at me that afternoon and said, “You don’t look like you’re up for doing dishes tonight. Why don’t we just order something?”

I didn’t argue.

And when it came time to pick up the pizza and salad, I leaped at the chance to make even a cameo appearance in the real world. But then I realized, Oh, wait, I look like hell.

Stepping in front of the bathroom mirror, I loosened the hair from my ponytail a bit to get a little volume on top of my head, so as to not look quite as harsh and rigid.

And then I nearly cracked up, looking down at my spit-up-on black yoga shorts. “Yes,” my last remaining shred of vanity intoned, “that little hair-pull makes ALL the difference. Instant MILF.” Continue reading

Most hated cleaning tasks, in order of my annoyance

1. Breast pump equipment: Hands down. The little bottles and lids aren’t that bad, but I can’t tell you how often I stand at the sink in the middle of the night, gouging around little hard plastic curves and impossible-to-reach areas in the connectors and valves with a freakin’ toothpick to clear out the built-up gunk that inevitably forms with regular use. And as soon as you clean everything, you need to pump again, and thus clean again. It’s just the most depressing, obnoxious cycle. Happily, however, I’m weaning Neve, so this is just now a thing of the past. Thank. God.

Lily, opening one of her favorite Princess dresses on her 4th birthday

2. Princess dresses: Lily loves them and wants to wear them all the time – which means, when she was having accidents often, they all got urine and fecal matter on them. And what do the directions on ALL of these dresses say? Well, they appear to be made of some kind of fragile onionskin or something, because the tags all say, essentially, no hand washing, no machine washing, no dry cleaning, just apply a wet cloth. On something that’s been shat upon? I don’t think so. No, what ultimately happens is that a pile of soiled dresses mounts on top of the dryer, and after weeks pass, I work up the gumption to go downstairs, fill the washer with Woolite suds, and dip the dresses in briefly, rinse them, and lay them out somewhere to dry. Hate. This. Continue reading