Ever since the day two screaming babies were yanked out of my uterus, there have been times when I’ve seriously questioned why the human population has not died out. If people knew the truth in advance, then surely no sane person would choose to procreate. Such thoughts have occurred over the years, especially in the beginning when 3am found me holding a colicky newborn while he screamed in my ear after a breastfeeding session that left my boob in throbbing pain.
Yes, yes, of course I love being a mom. I love and cherish my kids. But Despair’s brilliant Tranquility poster says it all. For the first few years, and possibly forever, tranquility is as elusive as sitting down to a non-interrupted hot meal.
Yesterday was one of those times, when I’ve wondered why the hell anyone would choose to bear and raise a screaming poo-poo machine. Sure, I know how wonderful and beautiful the whole thing is. I just need to vent once in awhile. Like right now.
Yesterday I was already in a somewhat pissy mood. My daycare lady announced two weeks ago that she is quitting the business in a couple of months, which will leave me with a major inconvenience (i.e., my kids!). Then Sunday night she called to tell me she is ill and couldn’t watch the kids yesterday.
The whole thing was A Perfect Storm. It happened to be a day that I absolutely could not take the day off work. My backup, my mom, was going in for a medical procedure. This left me no choice, at that late hour, other than to call and obsequiously beg my Friendsie to take the day off work to babysit. It killed me to have to do this, but I was desperate. He was just promoted to Director at a large corporation, and had a full schedule that included bringing in trainees. But he made some phone calls and did that for me.
Which means, I owe him Big Time, a fact not lost on me by his repeating it several times. The only good thing, which is a big good thing, is that my kids were thrilled; they love spending time with him and were treated to an indoor amusement center and the park. After I got off work, they were treated to dinner out with their favorite foods—steak fries, chicken tenders and dipping sauce, the dipping sauce being the favorite of the three of course.
Then I endured the hour-long drive home. My SAHM Mom Friend says she is so tethered to her kids that even driving in the car alone is a major luxury. So fucking true! My little monsters were absolute terrors on the drive home.
Why? Why, when I and Friendsie went out of our way to show them a special day, when they got to be away from their hated daycare, when their happy day was due to major sacrifices that others made, when I had had a stressful day at work with deadlines and meetings—why the fuck could they not be just a TAD grateful and at least refrain from hitting and screaming on the ride home after a billion loud and threatening requests from me?
It’s the age old question: after all I do for you, why can’t you appreciate it?
Because there’s an age old answer: the more we (kids and adults) get, the more we want, and the less happy or grateful we are. Plus, any satisfaction we get from having our wants met is all but killed by the harping sermons of the giver.
So there’s our answer, folks.
And to prove it, the domino effect goes something like this: My daycare lady’s not grateful that I didn’t get pissy with her on the phone about her illness and my inconvenience, my kids weren’t grateful for my efforts, I’m not grateful to Friendsie for his, he’s not grateful to his boss for letting him off the hook, his boss is likely not grateful to the employees who helped cover for Friendsie yesterday.
Tranquility, my ass.