I have started a blog entry about how frustrating all the different parts of pandemic life are – followed by the things I am thankful for. I may still publish that one, but I feel I’d be preaching to the choir. Instead, let me regale you with stories of this morning, and things that I feel only happen to me. Laughing at my misfortune (and possibly poor decisions) is how I cope. Come cope with me.
My usually sweet 10 year old Campbell is super sassy lately. Defiant. Not cooperating. She can be a jerk when she wants to, and it just makes it suckier for her and me and everyone living in our Quarantine quarters. This morning, instead of unleashing hell on her, I calmly asked her (for the third time) to pick up her room and make her bed, reminding her that this cleanup is to happen EVERY morning. Infuriated with the continued attitude and lack of positive response, I went to my room, shut the door and proceeded to scream at the top of my lungs. My personal trainers would have been proud! I used all the muscles in my body. Unfortunately the muscle that holds the pee in didn’t get the memo. (After two kids, that muscle has essentially given me the middle finger.) I was still mad, so I yelled again. I was amazed that there was more pee! Ug. My throat was sore from yelling, and I was hoping the neighbors weren’t going to call for help. So I changed my pants and moved on with the day, hoping that my little temper tantrum would clear my head and I could go be the loving, helpful mother my kids need.
The 10 year old sass continued – it may have even amplified! Now I am mad that she hadn’t changed her attitude and that somehow the husband is needed elsewhere, and I see work emails piling up that I cannot attend to until the school day is over and now the seven year old is bossing me around as if I am a terrible waitress, while he sits at MY desk, using MY computer, demanding an egg sandwich.
Again, I choose the high road. Make the snacks, deliver them lovingly and go to the basement for a quick walk on the treadmill while both kids are in their live meetings for school. The fast walking feels good. I wonder if I can get a full mile in before I am needed to redirect attention, help with technology, make a snack or break up a fight? Eric Church singing loud in my ears transports me to the time we saw his show at Red Rocks. “Let’s get this done!” I tell myself. Crank it up to 7 MPH, and start to run. FOR PETE’S SAKE!!! How after having zero breakfast and only one cup of coffee do I have all this urine? I would be a good dog. I could pee on everything all walk long! Change the pants again, and it’s not even 10 AM.
This isn’t the first time I’ve had to deal with this issue. It’s been getting worse ever since seven year old Cooper joined the Tippett crew. It became glaringly evident when I signed up to coach Campbell’s soccer team when she was 4 years old. Let’s clear something up first: I am sporty, but not “soccer sporty”. I don’t like the game. I don’t know the game. It bores me to watch it. I don’t get it. There is way too much running. But when the league called looking for coaches (because no one had volunteered), I said yes. Only because I didn’t want some jackass coaching my baby girl in her first soccer team. I quickly learned that no soccer knowledge or skill was necessary, although it would have been nice. I simply had to supervise a handful 4 and 5 year olds. They rarely did what we practiced anyway. Two of them would run around the field with the neck of their t shirts at the top of their heads, looking like “Cornholio” from Beavis and Butt-head. It was like wrangling rabid squirrels. ANYWAY, back to the matter at hand. This had been the first time I noticed a bit of leakage as I ran with the children around the field. I consulted with my doctor and was referred to a specialist. The specialist said I didn’t particularly need surgery to fix the issue, I could be fixed with what I’m going to call an “O-ring” that I insert into my lady parts, so it won’t leak anymore – kind of like a self-inflicted kink in a hose. HOORAY! I’m so excited to use this newfangled thing and run about the soccer field, coaching and cheering unabashedly. Fast forward to soccer practice, I’m in the middle of the field, surrounded by children. Their proud parents look on from the sidelines. I’m feeling confident, yet awkward, having placed the O-ring (my secret little helper) before leaving for practice. Jogging around the field, it comes time to yell directions, telling the kids where the ball is and which way to run. Oh GEEZ, NONONONONONONO. Something is slipping and moving as I clench my body to yell. The O-ring is trying to escape! There is no bathroom to escape to. My only way out is to limit movement, finish practice (perhaps a few minutes early) and escape to my car to retreat home and set the newfangled O-ring on a shelf in my medicine cabinet where it will forever stay. I can only hope the onlooking parents think I pulled a hamstring, because the truth is way too embarrassing.
Given my current predicament, maybe I should give the O-ring another shot for parenting during the pandemic?!