Family bonding rituals….yawn

Earlier in the week, I laid on the guilt pretty thick during an office Yankee Swap as I aggressive vied to keep the gingerbread house kit. It was perfect: four miniature houses, one for each of us, everything we need in the package. I would have to put no additional effort into making this family gingerbread house decorating thing happen. No baking. No churning butter cream. No buying decorative gum drops.

“You wouldn’t want to deny me the chance to make these houses with my kids, would you?” I bellowed. “Think of how happy they will be that I am doing something crafty with them!” I exclaimed. “Awe come on, they’re perfect for my kids’ tiny little hands; you have grown up hands.” I protested.

The gingerbread house kit was, in fact, the most popular item of the Yankee Swap. I lost it in the end but the aggressor who took it from only wanted the scratch tickets attached to it. This kind-hearted soul took pity on my mothering woes and let me have the kit.

Score! You can just call me Mommy of the Year.

So last night was the night. I had had the whole day off. Did a little bit of house work. Ran some errands. Took the kids to see Santa. And the time had come to make the assemble the sweet, cinnamon walls. While the walls were setting, we would watch Rudolf. Perfect. What better a family bonding event. After the show we would decorate the houses. I had proactively gotten my roof done even though the structure kept falling apart since I did not let the walls set. Perhaps it was because I knew what was coming…

….And then it happened. Like it always happens. I fell asleep.

For several years now, any Friday night I am not on call is family movie night. I have never made it through the opening credits of a single film. Nope. Not once. I have convinced myself that the kids are at least excited to be doing what ever we have decided to do and appreciate that we are all together even if I am slumped over with a trail of drool slinking down my jaw. This, sadly, is just one example of how I often just fall asleep when I let my guard down. Unfortunately, home is really the only place I can do this and my kids are often there with me.  So there is this vicious cycle of me pushing myself to do as much as I can to be present with my family and then falling asleep as soon as I am able to relax. The chronic sleep deprivation has no other cure.

I so very badly wanted to get through the entire gingerbread house decorating ritual with the family, especially after all the Yankee Swap trash talk (and to assuage the guilt of having fallen asleep earlier in the week while we were decorating the Christmas tree), but I JUST. COULD. NOT. FIGHT. THE. EXHAUSTION.  Time to find another family bonding ritual of the season (third time’s a charm, right?). Meanwhile, my doorless, decorless gingerbread house is flanked but the other three. I think they did a pretty nice job. Too bad I missed it.

gingerbreadhouses

Mommy guilt, “drunk” shopping, and giant giraffes

Let’s be honest, drunk dialing is a term that most of us have used on at least one occasion at some point in our lives.  Whether it was because we did the dirty deed ourselves or because we counseled one of our friends against its hazards, we are aware of what it means.  Really what it implies is that impaired thinking leads to impaired behavior.

Well, in my world, it is a well known fact that post call decision making usually ends up with results similar to that of drunk dialing.  And, at times, it can have really really bad results – for relationships, fashion choices, etc.  For example, one of my friends from residency was notorious for making hair appointments post call.  She would sit in the chair, tired and frustrated, and just tell the hairdresser to keep cutting, and keep cutting, and keep cutting, no matter what it looked like.  We knew we had to do something when after one of these post call hair sessions she unfortunately ended up with a mullet.  I’m not lying, folks, a genuine South of the Mason Dixon line mullet.  Needless to say, an intervention was made, and she was no longer allowed to book hair appointments post call.

I am obviously well aware of this phenomenon and even though having personally witnessed its dangers, I admit I still succumbed.  Well into a 62 hour long stretch of in hospital call, at midnight, no less, I decided to do some Christmas shopping.  Because really, what else puts you into the mood for Christmas shopping than being in the hospital in the middle of the night finishing up a consult for dead bowel?  Mmmhmm.  Just writing this makes me shake my head in semi-disbelief.

Anyhoo, on with the story.  So, this sudden Christmas shopping urge coupled with my extreme Mommy Guilt for not having seen my child in 2 days leads me to “drunkenly” believe I need to buy some more toys for him.  I immediately head towards one of my favorite sites, Amazon.com.  Sigh.  The ability to find just about anything under the planet for a great price, schedule deliveries of diapers, and refill my Kindle all under one roof so to speak is intoxicating to this constantly multi-tasking momma.  On the homepage is nothing other than their Holiday special sales, and that is when I see it.  The perfect gift that my sleep deprived self ridiculously thinks my 18 month old son needs.  I mean, Needs to have.

melissa-doug-2106-plush-giraffe-boy-400

A five foot tall stuffed giraffe.

Seriously.  So, you may be trying to rationalize this for me, thinking, Oh, so he must have a safari themed nursery?  Nope, it is gray and aqua.  Maybe the brown and yellow colors of said giraffe coordinate with his playroom décor?  Nope again, we went with gray and orange.  Maybe the giraffe is her son’s favorite animal at the zoo that he insists upon seeing every visit?  Alas, but no.  His favorite animals are the lions.

I got about 4 hours of sleep last night, which is pretty excellent for a night of call.  I woke up, feeling slightly groggy but at least of sound mind again.  And I think ….Did I really order a Giant stuffed giraffe for my child last night?  I check my phone as if I had drunk dialed, and realized instead, I had “drunk” shopped… for a giant giraffe.

P.S.  Can’t wait for this box to show up at my house.  I think it might be difficult to convince my husband that I have no idea how a dang giraffe as tall as myself came to be sitting on our front porch.  I sense another blog post coming…