My state of mind will make no sense to you unless you understand one thing: Settlers of Catan. I thought I was in heaven playing Yahtzee whenever I felt like it, but downloading Catan to my cell phone was the most addicting 8 bucks I've ever spent.
And there's something else you should know. I've been waking up at 5:30 a.m. to go walking with my friend Carmen at 6. To get a good night's rest I need to be asleep before LOST is even over, and you know that's not happening. But when I do get to bed I worry that I'm not falling asleep fast enough, that I'm going to be tired the next day, and that I'll forget everything Sawyer said about blowing up the submarine (and is he still a candidate?).
So the combination of insomnia and an addicting game equals too little sleep and a lack of emotional control.
Now about Mother's Day.
We have early-morning church and I was pleased that Mary got herself into the shower in plenty of time for me to do her hair, as we agreed the night before. She changed her mind about me blowing it dry and just wanted two ponytails.
I started to part her hair in a zig-zag. She got grumpy and whined, "Mom! You're taking too long! It doesn't have to be perfect!"
But I was almost done by then I had just poured some leave-in conditioner on my palm. When she saw it she freaked, "I don't want that on my hair! Ugh! Mom! Seriously, I'm just going to do my hair myself."
So I did the mature thing and blopped it on her hair anyway. "Come on, Mare, I'm going to make it really nice and smooth. Just sit still for two more minutes."
But I had crossed the line. She stormed out of the bathroom, a brush and a ponytail holder in hand.
I had lost the battle. And at that moment, I lost control.
"Fine! If you don't want your hair to look nice, that's your choice! You have completely ruined Mother's Day for me!" I cried, as I stomped off to my closet.
I sat there feeling angry.
And then I started to cry.
I knew I was being unreasonable. And it wasn't really about the hair. It was about not being in control. Of anything. Ever.
I grabbed my Real Men Marry Athletes t-shirt to wipe my eyes and to bury my face in. The reasonable part of me said, "Okay. Enough. Take a deep breath and put your makeup on. Stop being dramatic. Bryce is downstairs taking care of everything, so all you have to do is pull yourself together and enjoy your day."
So I took some deep breaths. I even fake-smiled to chase the negativity away. I said, "I'm ready."
But then I thought of sitting with the kids at church. And I began to bawl all over again.
Downstairs I heard everyone getting shoes, scriptures, and crayons. I heard my wonderful husband gather the kids into the car. I heard them drive away.
And instead of grabbing my stuff and making a late entrance, I went back to bed. In my church dress, with no makeup on.
I knew I was missing the best program of the year. I knew my kids would stand there singing Mother's Day songs to every woman in the ward but me. I would miss the Mother's Day gift and the special lesson in Relief Society, where we might even get a treat.
But I was too tired to care.
And so I skipped church on Mother's Day.
Bryce came home during Sunday School, just like I knew he would.
"The kids are evil," he said, plopping himself down in the bed.
I laughed. He always knows the right thing to say.
"Were they difficult today?" I asked.
"No, they were pretty good," he replied, filling me in on the details.
He ran his fingers through my hair.
"I'm sorry I didn't go," I said, tearing up.
He told me not to worry about it. He gave me a kiss.
And then he left.
And I finally drifted off to sleep.
When the kids returned I was feeling better. Bryce made me a fruit pizza for lunch. He explained that the kids would go around the table adding one fruit at a time, and say something they love about me. Well, I wasn't recovered enough for that! I was pretty teary. The most unexpected compliment I received was from Cameron, who said: "You inspire me." Inspire? Did he even know what that means? Bryce asked, "Inspires you to do what?" and he said, "To learn stuff." How nice is that?
Afterward I read with Cameron and Harrison, played Quelf with Mary, and played Skip-Bo with Tyce.
It was great to spend time with each of my kids.
I love them so much--even though I'm not in control of everything. Well, anything. Ever.
I am grateful to be a mother--even if I do hide in my closet on Mother's Day.
Thank you for loving me, kids. You are beautiful, talented, and generous--all of you. Thank you for the privilege of being your mom.
Tomorrow I will write a tribute to my own mother, who is amazing and wonderful.