hold on to your seats for this one.

by Janelle Hanchett

I recently made a profound discovery. You might want to sit down for this. It’s big. Take a deep breath, and let this one sink in…

…if I wake up earlier, I have more time to get ready.

Don’t ever say I’m not deep and intellectual.

This little insight didn’t just come to me overnight (the best shit never does). I had to work for this one. I had to suffer.

Let me explain. Every morning I wake up and the first thought that crosses my mind is “Oh shit. It’s morning and I’m awake. Whatever. I don’t care. I’m not getting up. I can’t do it today. Somebody else is going to have to do my life today.” And I think about all the crap ahead of me…facing me like a giant evil death monster…the MORNING ROUTINE…Arrrrgh! (scary growling sound).

Then I look at the clock. And no matter what time it is, I continue to lie there.

Then I think “maybe I should call in sick to work. Am I sick? Is there any part of me that is sick? Any part at all…? (mental body scan)… Damn it…not sick. Just overtired and cranky and out of energy..” I stare at the ceiling. I look at my cell phone. I wonder if I could possibly crash for 5 more minutes.

All ineffective.

So I roll over and give the baby boob to justify 10 more minutes of horizontal positioning. And I attempt to devise a plan to opt out of my life…and I come up with nothing…so I grunt, possibly cuss, and get myself out of bed. Where it begins.

I fucking hate mornings. Did I mention that?

They’re never good.

They always suck.

They bite.

(I believe that’s clear, Janelle. But why do they suck, pray tell?)

All right, I’ll tell ya. I never have lunches made. I often don’t even have lunch food, so I have to invent lunches out of whatever’s in the fridge, which makes my kids complain, which makes me discuss starving kids in Ethiopia, which makes them respond “so send it to Ethiopia.” (shitheads). My work clothes are rarely clean and never ironed. Occasionally I have no clean underwear in my drawer, which means I have to dig through the clean laundry pile in our laundry room, which, incidentally, is the size of a broom closet and thus angers me by its mere existence. Georgia has to get ready for the nanny –fed, dressed, clean diaper, bag packed. She pees at least 12 cups as soon as she wakes up. She also poops. She wants my attention. I want to give her my attention. But I can’t. So I set her on the floor, soak up all her smiles, talk to her and wish I could be with her all day.

And depending on how I spent my Sunday, the kids’ uniforms may or may not be clean and in their drawers. I have to remind them to do EVERYTHING – especially teeth and hair brushing. Rocket won’t get dressed without extreme coaxing/bribing/threatening/begging. He also rolls on the floor a lot, in complete desperation that today isn’t a “stay at home day.” Ava is perfect. But there’s only one of her.

There are binders and bags and lunches and breast pumps and show-and-tell items and science projects and permission slips and report cards and emotional break-downs and assemblies requiring “high uniform” and morning nourishment and then there are the actual small humans who need to get to school. And there’s me – who is supposed to shower, get dressed in clean, wrinkle-free work clothes, put on make-up, blow dry hair and get out the damn door…all by 8am. And I’m supposed to do it cheerfully. Because my kids deserve a happy start to their day. Because that’s what mother do. Mothers are cheerful and positive and…I don’t know. Something.

But by the time I’ve done all this – always in a rush because there’s NEVER time – by the time I’m finally getting those kids in the car and we’re leaving the house… I’m so miserable and stressed and overwhelmed and questioning the purpose of life that I morph into a crazy impatient old-bitter-lady psycho. And I suck.

Now some of you fancy problem-solvers out there may be wondering why I don’t just do things differently – for example…make lunches the night before. Go to bed and wake up an hour earlier. Get all the bags packed and ready to go in advance…do laundry. Organize.

It’s a funny thing, that. That logic. That simple, straightforward, adult-like approach.

I’ve never been very good at it.

I prefer to wallow in ineffective routines and profound discomfort until things get so miserable that I absolutely cannot stand it for ONE MORE SECOND.

Then I change.

I mean it’s not that I can’t SEE the more logical, adult way of doing things. Despite appearances, I’m not a complete idiot. It’s the execution of those ideas that kills me. It’s the follow through. The making it happen. (I know, it’s all very un-American of me.)

But recently, I changed the morning thing.

But not by choice.

The other day Georgia woke up at 5:15am. I wanted to cry. Georgia did not want to cry. Georgia wanted to party. So I got up, sadly. I made coffee. I drank coffee. I ate food. My mood changed a bit. I dressed Georgia slowly and played with her and cruised around the house at a near snail’s pace. I washed the breast pump, made lunches, packed bags, took a shower and got dressed before the kids even woke up. I took care of myself. Then I took care of them. I didn’t forget anything. And we got out the door with 10 minutes to spare.

I didn’t yell. I didn’t even contemplate suicide. The morning was SO MUCH BETTER.

Because check it out:  if I have more time to get ready, I am less rushed and therefore, less pissed off.

I believe the word you’re looking for here is genius.

(or WOW. As in “WOW Janelle you are a jackass.”) Either one is fine. Cause I’m a kinda proud of myself.

THESE are my problems in the morning. Well no, they're not. These are the two people I BLAME for my problems in the morning.

15 Comments | Posted in Sometimes, I'm all deep and shit..... | April 21, 2011
  • eringirl

    Omg why is it that the breast pump is the thing that puts me over the edge? Washing all the damn pieces makes me want to stab myself with a dull pencil. And I definitely use nursing as an excuse to stay in bed longer…

    • renegademama

      This made me laugh out loud. EACH TINY PIECE – the fucker just goes on forever. And it’s so unwavering in its need to be cleaned (the asshole) — it just looks at me, quietly whispering “if you don’t clean me, your baby may get sick with evil bacterial infections and it will be YOUR FAULT you lazy ass.” And then of course I clean it.

  • Rebekah C

    I have declared Mornings to be my arch-nemesis. Evil, bitchy things, mornings.

    • renegademama

      Glad to see I’m not alone. They have a personal vendetta against me. They want me to die. Obviously, they’re after you too.

  • Erika

    I don’t care what you say, there is still a time warp between the time you get up, and the time you have to be out the door. I get up at 5am, and have to be out the door some days by 7am. That leaves me with two hours to feed the dogs, the cat, the fish, and maybe myself. I get to also think about making a lunch, and eventually make some sort of food-like substance that I can eat during a lunch-like period of time, which I will probably not eat because I won’t be able to take my 15 minute break. By that time, I’m usually running behind schedule, and have to find where my clothes are, actually put them on, and remember to let the dogs out so that they don’t have accidents in the house.
    I may get out of the house on time (or nearly on time), but it still seems to take longer to get things done in the morning than they should.
    My conclusion: not only is my house a cellular reception black hole, but also contains a time dimensional flux that causes time to speed up.

    • renegademama

      YAY! You’re back! I missed you commenting around here… 🙂

  • Lisa

    Oh good, even though those days are over, it is a relief to know that I’m not the only maniac mother in the world. Oh wait, we’re related….maybe it’s a Hanchett thing?

    • renegademama

      yay Lisa! (glad to “see” you here.). And yes…I pretty much think we can blame any problem on our shared parental heritage. I mean they’re some crazies. We love ’em (of course), but shit. That Hanchett line is NO JOKE. Love you.

  • Shan

    I’m glad to know I’m not alone. From the boob excuse to the cursing to hearing my pump whispering to me (mine, however, says “wacko”… whatevs). The difference between us is the willingness to change. *sigh*

    PS How’s this for time management. I should be doing something else right now, but got tangled in your blog again. Then the call of nature… so here I sit, laptop appropriately placed, not working, but still taking care of business.

  • 1 Funky Woman

    Oh I hate them too! I’m sitting here at my daughter’s gymnastics laughing and practically peeing you are too funny!

    Strange how just getting up earlier will do that to a person.

    Our mornings suck! My kids are 11 and 6 and I swear sometimes they don’t know their head from their ass.

    I hope it gets better for all of us!


  • Kimberly

    OH, yes.

    Here’s the thing. I get up at 5am because if I do not ingest at large cup of coffee before my children make a peep, the day is ALL BAD.

    You would think that would leave PLENTY of time to get out the door by 8:45. NO. You are wrong. Apparently 3 hours and 45 minutes is ALWAYS just 10 minutes shy of the time I actually need. And if I wake up at 4:50am to account for that missing time, I am still 10 minutes behind. WTF.

    I will do all of your grocery shopping and pack the fucking lunches if you homeschool my children. THAT’S what sister wives do, yo.

  • Christina

    You are so refreshing. Why is it that no one ever wants to admit that this is how the morning goes. I hate the moms that get up early and cruise into school all relaxed and unstressed. I hate them because I am jealous and because why oh why cant I get my ass out of bed on time. I know I am suppose to get up earlier but like you I am so tired. And like you I have such an easier time when I have more time. I just wish I could KEEP getting up earlier and not slip back into my old self. But here I am rushing around every morning.

    Oh well maybe when I grow up a bit I will be able to do it. (I dont really want to grow up either)

  • tracey

    Good for you! I wish that I could force myself up an hour before my kids, but the habit is hard to hold onto…

  • Amber

    This was hilarious I laughed-reread it and laughed again-then read parts to my husband and laughed some more…I have a newborn and a two year old and mornings are definitely the hardest part of the day…

  • Denise Finneran

    You fucking rock, Janelle. It just makes me feel so much better that I am not alone