As the mom of three young children, two cats, a dog, two birds and three houseplants*, it feels like there are never ending bids for my attention. Without stopping I run from one thing to the next all morning, from the minute I get up until all three kids are finally napping (if it happens at the same time.)
This morning after breakfast was over, the kids and I organized a new cupboard for the homeschool supplies. Taking the breakable crystal out of there, packing it in a box and filling the cupboard with posters, workbooks, markers, cards, dice, dominoes, letter tiles, flashcards, books, journals, pencils and crayons took us the better part of an hour.
When that was done, we had to get some of the stuff back out, namely the Bananagrams game which doubles as our letter-learning tiles. We spent quite a while spelling words and talking about letter sounds, which Little Mister rapidly is mastering.
Suddenly without warning the clock told me it was time to fix lunch. This was Baby Bear's cue to awaken and insist that he needed lunch too, immediately if not sooner. Little Mister, picking up the letters, dropped some on the floor and sent up a howl, asking for help in retrieving them. The dog and cat out on the back porch reminded me that they hadn't had their lunches yet either.
In a way being the sole provider for all these living things dependent on me for sustenance is exhilarating, primal. But having them all asking at once makes me feel like tearing my hair out. Trying to block out the shrieking, screaming, howling, meowing, yelling and the ongoing cries of "Mommy, Mommy, Mommy!" I worked doggedly away at fixing the right food for each one.
An hour later with the pets fed, the kids full of dinosaur-shaped chicken nuggets, carrots and peaches, the baby full of milk (to the anonymous commenter who apparently can't see my face in the picture: I am holding him, bottlenursing. I don't prop his bottles, although I did reach up briefly to take the picture), the plants watered, the birds' seed replenished and my coffee pot finally started, I sat with a sigh on the couch, pulled my laptop onto my lap and at last had a few minutes of blessed quiet. I'm glad the chaos comes in waves; I'm not sure I could handle an unending stream of it!
*I actually don't do much to take care of these; they sit there getting more dry by the day. I just needed something else to make my list of dependents more impressive.