Also known as: How to Have a Crappy Evening After a Good Morning
Get up at 6:00 a.m. to shovel a few inches of wet snow while a cold rain falls.
Have a very busy day at work. Not stressful, exactly, but busy, and I'm still getting familiar with the job.
Do the evening commute in the pouring rain, never going appreciably over 45 mph even though your commute is 90% on major freeways. End up arriving 10 minutes late to daycare.
Discover Riley to be on the brink. He's smiling, but hanging on by a thread. Have Riley get pushed over the edge to the Dark Side when one of the less-familiar daycare employees carries him out to the car.
Listen to Riley sob most of the way home. Luckily, it's only a five-minute drive.
Try to cajole Riley into helping bring in the milk, a task he usually enjoys but today refuses to do.
Haul a screaming Ri-Man into the house. Get him over the hump (briefly) by promising a trip down to the basement (!)
Take trip to basement. Console Riley when he trips on the last stair and falls apart. Again.
Get everyone upstairs. Riley is still upset. Take Riley into living room for some glider time. Calm Riley down only to have him flip out again when Maddie tips over a ceramic vase/urn thingie in the living room that was among John's favorite objets d'art. Pick up Maddie to console her, too, because the sight and sound of the breaking vase freaked her out. Briefly worry about whether or not stoneware might contain lead paint.
Have a family cry in the glider.
Decide to make boxed mac'n'cheese for dinner. Get family into kitchen for prep. Enjoy brief respite in the insanity while kids entertain themselves while dinner is cooked.
Lose your sh*t when Riley starts to scream upon seeing his mac'n'cheese with peas. "No patsa! Yes pasta! No peas! Yes peas! No pasta! Yes pasta!" [sob, sob, sob]
Offer up some animal crackers. Find that this is too much for Riley, who falls apart. Again. To the point that he gets put in his crib for a few minutes to calm down.
Get Riley out of his crib. Get kids ready for bed, which involves a few pep talks for Riley, but is eventually successful and pretty much tear-free.
Close the door to the kids' room and feel like crying/screaming/punching someone, but lack the energy to follow through.
Remember you need to pay bills. Log on to online banking and find that you are $500 overdrawn in your checking account and have nearly $4000 (yes, that's $4K) in bills due. You know, mortgage, credit card, car payment, utilities, daycare, student loans, automatic debit to retirement account (which might need rethinking) . . . basically every monthly bill you ever get. Transfer some money, prep a deposit for the next day, and feel utterly depressed about your financial situation.
Remember that tomorrow is Valentine's Day, and that your valentine is, well, dead.
(And, just when you thought it was over, hit "Publish Post," lean over to set the laptop on the coffee table, and knock over the only remaining glass of wine in the house. I'm so ready for bed. Or a Scotch. Or a Scotch then bed. Or something.)