B-R-I-N-G! It sounds like an alarm clock, but for me it’s a stopwatch. I want my fuzzy slippers, but I reach for my running shoes. While tying my laces, I mumble, “Let the race....no make it, the day begin.” Trotting down the hall, I reach the staircase, lunging three stairs in a single bound. Needing a quick spurt of energy, I gulp a few swallows of strong, dark coffee as I set in motion making breakfast.
I pour cereal in bowls, and shove bread into the toaster. As the toast pops up, I glance at the clock, racing back up stairs. It’s up to me, the mother hen of five sleeping chicks, to get them out the door by 7:20 am for school. While my brood is stirring, I feel like I’m running a marathon as I butter toast and make sandwiches.
Just when I think I can almost see the finish line, my youngest daughter, Delaney, makes an announcement. “Mom, Anton isn’t getting ready for school.”
I find my son, Anton, doing something important - unraveling dental floss. As I open the bathroom door, a mound of woven floss lays on the tile.
“Anton, what are you doing? Clean this up, now! We’re going to be late for school.”
With the clock ticking away, it’s now 7:05. The lunches are packed, the cereals half-eaten, and toast crumbs are trailed from the table to the sink.
Suddenly, I hear a faint voice, “Mom, I can’t find my shoe.”
I dash to the coat closet and like a squirrel, I dig. Just as I think I’ve found my treasure, one black right shoe, I glance over my shoulder. My youngest son, Robert, has unpacked his pretzel sticks from his lunch, and is assembling a fort.
“Robert, put the pretzel sticks back in your lunch bag. We’re going to be late.”
“Sure, Mom, no problem.”
Back to the closet, I shout, “Bingo!” I raise the missing shoe over my head, like a trophy, calling out, “Here it is! Come on guys, let’s go!”
Bolting toward my SUV, I realize my boys aren’t with me. “Where’s Robert and Anton?”
Honking the horn, the front door flings open as my boys emerge.
Backing out of the driveway, I’m now in the final stretch. I put the pedal to the metal. With moments to spare, we pull into the school parking lot, and I screech to a halt. My kids fling the doors open, calling out “Bye, Mom.” They race each other to the door, waddling under the weight of their backpacks. Just before Delaney yanks the door open, she turns around, grins, and gives me a big wave.
I sigh. How come I’m so tired and it’s only 7:45 am? Only fourteen more hours to go!