Written on a November monday in 2007 and published in the Cambridge Times, which I was writing a column for at the time. Please enjoy this oldie but goodie about life back when the kids were much younger and I was a mess in a whole other kind of way:
Manic Monday makes me Melancholy
By Nuala Reilly
It’s a Monday, not metaphorically, but literally. Why is it that Mondays seem to garner such a bad rap? I’ll tell you why, because they stink. Okay, so I’m a little bitter today but when I say why, I am sure that countless mom’s and dads out there will identify with all or part of my stinky Monday.
It all began shortly before midnight. My daughter is constipated. She is suffering from those horrible body-bending cramps that go along with it and has been back and forth to the bathroom since I first put her to bed hours ago. But now she is crying too, so I call her down and make her a home remedy. Warm water with a teaspoon full of molasses dissolved in it. It’s supposed to soften the stools. At the very least, it got her to sleep shortly before one. By the time I got to sleep, I was too hot, too tired, and had the dog trying to find a comfort zone on my feet, giving credence to the adage, a bad nights sleep makes for a bad Monday morning.
I woke up this morning at 7:30 and promptly punched my alarm clock. I managed to put my robe on backwards, trip over three toys, let out the dog, fight with the hubby, lecture kids on proper layering of clothes in bad weather and put four bowls of oatmeal on the table without waking the sick one still in bed all by 8:05. And I hadn’t even had my coffee yet.
Already this morning, the dog has peed on the carpet, the washing machine has developed some new quirk in which the sink won’t empty in time and the contents of the rinse cycle end up on the floor and I have dug out the winter coats only to find that half of them were put away wet and are now covered in mould.
Ahhh, just in time for lunch and a barrage of school kids to come in the door simultaneously demanding various lunches and with multiple tales of their Monday mornings to shout at me in unison while utterly convinced that the importance of their tales ranks highly over the importance of their siblings’.
I find myself down here in my haven. Punching out on my computer the chaotic mess of my day so far and wondering how on earth I will get through the next ten hours.
This afternoon I have to find some way to fix the washing machine to keep up with the never-ending pile that I was starting to make a dent in until the “incident” this morning. I have to fix the hole in a pair of my husbands pants, iron three shirts, make a phone call to my insurance company (oh joy), clean up the living room before the after school rush and make dinner before five o’clock so that when my husband gets home at 5:30, I can kiss him in the driveway while I jump into the car to make it to Kitchener in time for my 6:00 night school class.
I am already tired. I suddenly understand why it is that some people just go crazy and start screaming in the middle of a grocery store or something. Or stop their car in the middle of the road and just sit in it fuming and trying to get a handle on how they became an unhinged psychopath when only yesterday they were convinced that they were rational and intelligent adults. The funny thing is, it never seems that things like this happen in the middle of the week.
I think that I might go on strike from experiencing Mondays. Just think of how blissful our lives would be if we all gave up on Monday. We could have Sunday…the sequel. Another day to sleep in or go to church or dine with family or just stay in bed with a lover, another day in our already too busy lives in which we could just come down off of our weeks and relax. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a four-day workweek and a three-day weekend? No appointments, no shopping, no chores, no bosses, no hassles, no lineups, no telemarketers. I am sure that once upon a time, when the world was working at a slower pace, there were days that were like that and I am equally sure that days like that contributed to a greater sense of overall peace. Just think about it, more rest and relaxation equals less stress. Less stress equals higher quality of life, better health, and better relationships. Our families would have more time together; our jobs would not be the I Ching of the meaning of our existence. I am sure that I could go on and find further reason to downsize the work-a-day week by giving Mondays the ultimate lay-off and telling it to find permanent fixture elsewhere. But until I possess the power to fire Monday in favor of another Sunday, I’ll just have to fire up the coffee maker, maybe take a few nips into the kids Halloween chocolate, take a deep breath and hope for the best. Its not so bad…Tuesday is just 11hours and 47minutes away. I can make it until then.