It's an annual happening. This is the week, as it is every year, that Kristy goes back to work, but the kids still have another week of summer vacation left, and I am in charge of them.
It's never pretty.
It's like snake handling. You can look at those poisonous serpents through the safety of aquarium glass all you want, but at some point you just have to reach in and grab one. Or four. This is the week I reach in and attempt to control the vipers.
This first day began well enough. I was up before any of them and showered, ready for the day ahead. I even did the dishes and some laundry. GK slept late and was upset by the absence of her mother when she awoke, but she quickly got over it and settled in to watch Sesame Street (Gabi seems ... older, doesn't she?). The other kids woke up, ate, got dressed and were ready to leave the house in a timely fashion.
I had a chiropractor appointment to have this ice pick, or whatever it is, that's jammed into my shoulder looked at. A chiropractor appointment with four kids in tow, it turns out, is counterproductive.
You know how when someone else's kids are jumping around, and acting like sociopaths, and the parent says, "I don't know what's gotten into him, he never acts like this" but you know for a fact that the kid always acts like that? Maybe that's how my kids are perceived, because I found myself saying, "I don't know what's going on with her" after S was scolded by the doctor for hitting JP, an aggression I couldn't see as my back was to them at the time.
I had to walk over to work afterwards because there were some things I had to get done. These kids all know that they are to behave and stay quiet when they're at the store because there are customers who have questions and I need to be able to talk to those people. The kids know this, they just don't care. The girls ran throughout the place while JP called out to them from the mezzanine. And, of course, you have to watch GK with the inventory, that girl loves a panatela.
We walked over to Roma for lunch. I ordered five slices, an order of pepperoni breadsticks and drinks, and the kids actually behaved for all of this. At one point GK, finished with her meal, got down to dance around and wave at people. This was too cute to cause a problem.
Once at home, though, things really heated up. These kids can't keep their hands off of each other, constantly in each other's personal space, pushing and hitting. Once it all went too far and S's hand was slammed in a bedroom door, I sent them all to separate rooms, where they stayed for the rest of the day. Or until 3:30 when Big Mama got home to relieve me.
I went to work. Alone.
Tomorrow is school registration, which is always a treat. Stay tuned ...