Have you ever asked yourself that question? You start the day fresh, with so many ideas and plans of what you will accomplish at work and at home. That brief will be completed and handed in to the boss, dinner will be cooked and on the table at 6:30 pm and all the laundry will be washed and folded. Oh, and you will go through that growing stack of paper on the table in the hall. At the office, you put out fires all day and the brief is left half-written. You pick up dinner on your way home and throw it on the table at 7:00. One load of laundry is left in the washer and the stack of paper has grown again. It’s 11:00 pm, you are exhausted and ask yourself, where did the evening go?
Are the days getting shorter or is my life just getting busier? With three young children and a new career and professional life developing I know I have big dreams. I know I can’t have it all, but at least I can try to accomplish many of the tasks on my list. It seems so easy every morning when I have energy and a cup of coffee in me to dream about everything I want to get done that day, that week and that month. By the end of the day, most days, I ask myself, where did the evening go?
Children really have a great talent of destroying an evening. That’s right I said it. My children are the loves of my life, but wow, I can’t get anything done when they are around. The baby, as cute as she is, monopolizes me and my time when I am home with her. By 5:00 pm, like a typical 14-month-old, Nessa is whiny and crabby and claws at my ankles like a pesky dog. Her seven-year-old sister, Julia, refuses to go to bed lately, claiming there is no bedtime during summer vacation. My husband has been getting home from work late often, so dinner is only cleaned up after 8:00 pm.
By 9:00 pm dinner is usually cleaned up, the baby is usually asleep in her crib and there are only a few toys left on the family room floor. Julia is still running around the house screaming she is not tired and I may have remembered to put a load in the laundry.
When we hit 10:00 pm sometimes Julia has fallen over unconscious on a chair or the couch and I tidy up around her. Now it’s time to get lunches ready for the next day, send the daily email or letter to camp so that Matthew doesn’t think I don’t love him and switch over the laundry (if I remember that I put a load in in the first place).
At 11:00 pm my brain has fallen asleep but I think my body is still in motion. Maybe I will have a snack or take a shower. Maybe I will tidy Julia’s supremely messy room as she is still asleep on the living room chair. Then the baby wakes up and she is screaming and telling me I am a terrible mother for leaving her in her crib in that dark horrible room.
Where did the evening go? That’s where my evening went. Forget preparing for the next day’s blog post or going through that large stack of paper on the table, reading the next chapter of my book, catching up on old episodes of House Hunters on HGTV or cleaning the fridge.
And the next morning, as I wake up fresh and ready for the day I ask myself as I think about the day before, where did the evening go? And I tell myself that that won’t happen today because today is a new day and I will accomplish everything I set out to do. I will keep thinking that way because one day I will come through on my promise and one evening I will prepare the next day’s blog post, go through that large stack of paper on the table, read the next chapter of my book, catch up on old episodes of House Hunters and clean the fridge. When will that day happen?