The Advent Countdown

On the first day of Christmas, my true loves gave to me: a mushy brain with no memory….

‘I think I have Alzheimer’s’, the professor said to me the other night. ‘I can’t remember anything.’ ‘Me too,’ I commiserated. ‘Let’s hope this is infant-induced, otherwise I don’t know who will take care of who(m).’

Whether related to our favorite three month old (and often the two year old’s) nocturnal shenanigans, our advancing age or our increasingly late bedtimes in an effort to get anything done, it is indeed a case of ‘dumb and dumber’ chez Johnson these days.

There’s lots of walking into rooms, followed by: ‘why did I come in here…I know there’s something I wanted to do’ muttered aloud. Washed laundry is left in the washing machine….for days. The Advent Season has begun, yet we have no tree, and can’t actually sit still long enough to open the little envelopes I spent hours making. Just as well, since the card inside the December 2 envelope says: ‘get a Christmas tree’ and I don’t see that happening any time soon.

It must be universal, this prolonged memory lapse in parents of small children. I asked a fellow school mom for her address yesterday, so I’d know where to go for a party she was hosting. Worried, she looked around, ‘do you have a pen and paper?’ ‘No,’ I replied. ‘But I can remember it,’ I said more confidently than I had a right to, all the while wondering if hers was an exceedingly complicated address like # 3E 2498 Birds Way Passage Navigator Lane. But it wasn’t. It was a very simple address, like 1011 24th Street. Unconvinced of my mental ability, she tried to devise a mnemonic strategy for me, sure I’d forget the address by the time I got to my van. Where I could write it down.

At last night’s book club, one of the moms announced: ‘I feel smart! I feel like I can do anything.’ ‘When does it come back,’ I asked, ‘because I feel dumb.’ A sentiment that was only reinforced as they, moms of non-infants, discussed the matter of Dubai’s possible bankruptcy. At least I’d heard of …Dubai.

It’s not all bad, of course. There is great non-intellectual benefit in watching the two oldest boys playing together these days. Which mostly involves the Gort dragging the Hen by the arm saying ‘let’s go play in the basement’ or ‘come on, let’s go play in my room’. Uh, our room? But for now the little brother is too pleased to be included to make a fuss about semantics.

Playing in ‘their’ room involves pulling the Gort’s mattress off the bed frame so it’s perpendicular to the floor. And jumping on it. Preferably while wearing a hockey and soccer jersey, respectively. When I walked in the other day, the Gort was putting a soccer jersey on his brother over his existing red and blue turtleneck. Later in the day, when it was nearly dark, they were huddled together at an outlet intently watching a glowing night light.

And despite his erratic nights, P-baby is a charm(er) with bright brown eyes and half dimpled smile. He can be in the middle of wailing and, when placed in front of a mirror, will immediately stop and smile at his likeness. As if to say ‘hey, I’m cute!’.

So I’m hoping this too, shall pass. That there will be a day in the future when I don’t drift aimlessly from one task to the next without completing anything. That my house will be tidy. And that I will be able to cook a meal without three children of varying ages wailing or running around me in circles, playing tag while I’m holding a pot of boiling water.

Until then, all I want for Christmas…is twelve hours of uninterrupted sleep.

6 thoughts on “The Advent Countdown

  1. Everyone keeps asking me if Asher is sleeping through the night. (Uhhh… no. But thanks for asking. That really makes me feel good.) Just wanted you to know I’m thinking of you guys!

  2. We thought we had the ‘uninterrupted sleep’ down with the boys. For the past year, we’ve always had ‘little visitors’ in our bed and a few weeks ago we finally said ‘enough’. KJ&C did so well. 3 weeks of sleeping in their own rooms, every night, ALL night (the rule is they can’t come into our room until the sun comes up – not sure how this will work in summer when the sun is up at 5:30am!!). I decided to brag about our accomplishment yesterday to a friend. Never do that…NEVER brag. 4:30am, Connolly decided he was going to pay us a visit. And he never did go back to sleep…even once he got in our bed. Did I mention the boys are 4-1/2 yrs old!! 🙂

  3. my oldest was born 7 1/2 years ago …. and I don’t think I’ve slept through the night since – best wishes to you both! 😉

  4. Apparently the solution is to go to bed at 10 each night. That way, by the time 7 rolls around you’ve maybe cobbled together 5 hours of sleep. Except to go to bed at 10 it means your house is still a mess when you wake up!


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