I wander the earth, since Demon Baby's arrival, in such a state of hypervigilance, constantly trying to prevent--or clean up--mayhem. I am not kidding in that I have recently had to start high blood pressure medication. In the last year, my blood pressure has shot up 20 points.
There is a very rude woman who lives a block away from me. She is someone who never fails to make pronouncements of judgment about other people. I avoid her like the swine flu, but about three months ago, she commented in front of a room full of people that I "clearly" do not supervise my child enough since he gets in so much trouble, with a pronouncement of "What kind of mother are you?" Needless to say, this is why I don't go to cocktail parties.
I work from home as a novelist (and no, I don't make up ANY of the stuff on this blog--he generally has a blog-worthy event nearly every day), which means I am with Demon Baby 24/7. He is never too far from me, but . . . you know . . . mothers have to shower. I use the bathoom on rare occasions. I write in my office. I sometimes have to go outside to check the mail. You get the idea.
If you've ever worked in a restaurant, you know the five-second rule. If it falls on the floor in the kitchen for less than five seconds, you can still plate it up. Now . . . I don't ASCRIBE to the five-second rule, but I have worked as a waitress and bartender. I know it exists. Demon Baby has a five-second rule.
If I am away from him for five seconds, mayhem will result. Books will come cascading off of shelves, the printer in my office will have a pen shoved in it, toilet paper will go floating from the second-story landing. In fact, out of my sight for five seconds, I swear to you, the most often-heard expression is: "Oops!" Followed by: "Don't worry! It didn't break."
I am going away this weekend. It will, I think, be only the third night I have ever been separated from Demon Baby is four years. I know that sounds hopelessly pathetic, as in, "This poor mother NEVER gets a break and clearly doesn't take vacation," but it is what it is. One the rare occasions when I am not around him, it takes my brain and body at least 24 hours to relax. By then, it's time to come home. In this case, I am going to see my dad, who needs a pacemaker and is blind . . . so it's not like I will be dancing and doing the cha-cha on some beach somewhere.
So we shall see what panicked phone calls I get from my adult daughter, who shall be in charge of Demon Baby . . . what mayhem results . . . what I will face when I open the door after the weekend.
That's A LOT of time for him to be without me! (I need to remind Oldest Daughter of the five-second rule.)