If you haven’t noticed yet my life goes in waves of craziness. Sometimes one big wave will crash and a nice little (relative) calm will follow. Other times the waves roll in one right after another before any kind of calm settles in. Lately it seems like the waves just keep rolling in. Of course some are bigger than others and last week was quite a doozy. This week, the one that’s just now wrapping up, was slightly smaller and this next week looks like there might be some semblance of normal.
I’m well aware that at least some degree of the insanity of my life is my own fault; I’m okay with that. My co-blogger has accused me of thriving on the chaos. She’s not wrong.
I take on a lot and then maybe I procrastinate. It’s the recipe for a perfect storm but usually I find a way to make it through.
After my sister’s wedding last week I’ve realized that this high level of procrastination is an epidemic in my family. Clearly either nature or nurture (more likely both) are at play here.
I am fighting more powerful forces than my own inclinations and whims….yeah, that’s my excuse.
The wedding was scheduled for late Friday afternoon and by Thursday I had almost everything ready. Almost. I really hadn’t done any of my online classwork like I had hoped to or had a chance to get myself some shoes and the car wasn’t packed up so we could leave right after the kids got out of school that day. But I had basically gotten everything done.
The four ring bearer’s bowties were made, my daughter’s dress was altered, the other three boys’ suits were all together and ready to go and I had even washed my (Dry Clean only) dress. I even managed to make seventy-two brownies for one of my kids to bring to school for a birthday treat, gone to another kids’ school event, and voted one evening.
Sure, I was cutting out of class early to go shoe shopping and probably wouldn’t make it to the rehearsal dinner (my ring bearer son was getting picked up from school early to go with a family member) but I had pretty much managed to get everything done. The intense pace of the weak was showing though and I was at the point where I was mentally (and maybe actually) saying “Fuck it all!” with a maniacally crazed laugh.
Yes, there was definitely that slightly off look in my eye, the one where strangers give you extra space and smile at you as they slowly back away.
It was at this point that my mom called me (for the fiftieth time that week). I assumed she was going to ask again if I couldn’t just ask my ex if the kids could stay later on Saturday to swim at the hotel’s water park.
( I’d been telling her all week that I had barely gotten him to agree to let me have the kids the two extra nights so they could participate in all the pre-wedding activities. I was not going to battle for more time at this point.)
Instead she wanted to know when I thought I’d get to the dinner or hotel. I told her my plan. Then she asked if I could bring my sewing machine to the hotel…
“Could you bring your sewing machine to the hotel? Your sister needs her bridesmaid dress altered. It’s way too long, she’s going to trip on it.”
“Oh you mean the dress I offered to fit for her a month ago? That dress?”
Clearly my mom was failing to recognize the edge of crazy in my voice because she started to say yes and make a lame excuse for my baby sister.
“I offered to fit it over a month ago…all she had to do was bring it over! I’ll bring my sewing machine but I…am..NOT..hemming her dress! I’ve got my own shit to get done. I’ve still got homework in three classes to finish and and…”
At this point my mom calmly reassured me (in that talking someone down from a ledge tone) that someone else could hem the dress if I just brought my sewing machine to the hotel.
Fine, what’s one more thing to pack up?
Sometimes my life makes me into an asshole. I mean, sometimes I behave badly and just am an asshole, but there are times that the insanity of one person trying to manage the lives of five other people just makes me an asshole.
Family weddings always seem to be one of those times (although I am getting better). I was late for my brother and sister-in-law’s wedding last September. Late. To my own brother’s wedding.
I missed my beautiful sister-in-law walking down the aisle and caused a mild stir as I tried to heard my gang into the pews reserved for family at the front of the church as quietly as possible which is just not that quietly.
In my defense I spent the afternoon waiting for and being stood up by a CPS worker. But that’s another story for another day.
The point is I was late, more than a little. I felt like an asshole.
Heck, I was an asshole.
This time I was slightly less of an asshole. I just missed the rehearsal dinner, not a huge deal but still, just one of those things.
Around 9:30pm we finally got to the hotel and embraced the chaos that is my family. It was great and almost relaxing. I even got some homework done after everyone else had gone to sleep a few hours later. Which was a very good thing because there was NO time the next day for any of that.
As I’ve mentioned one of my sons, the youngest, was a ring bearer. He was one of four. Yes, four. There were four Flower Girls and four Ring Bearers. A gaggle of super adorable fancy children preceded the bride down the aisle.
Maybe she was just looking for a challenge because it was pretty difficult to beat out that level of cuteness. She may have succeeded though. My sister was a beautiful bride.
However, she is also a procrastinator.
Less than two weeks before the wedding I still had no idea what my son was supposed to wear. I’d heard a few ideas being tossed around but nothing definitive yet so I called my sister (the one getting married) to ask. She got online while we were talking and picked out some vests for the boys to wear.
No time like the present I guess..especially when the present is less than two weeks before the big day.
I told her to get my son whatever size our other sister was getting for our nephew since they’re roughly the same size and my son wasn’t with me to measure at the time.
Well, she did but the vests she ordered ended up being big boy sizes instead of small boy sizes. And of course she didn’t get them until a day or two before the wedding.
It was a very good thing I had brought my sewing machine to the hotel.
The morning of the wedding I found myself playing last minute seamstress.
I did end up fitting the bridesmaid dress. It was the quickest, dirtiest hem job ever. When I was throwing my sewing stuff together to bring with me I had forgotten to grab my straight pins and I hadn’t seen the dress so I was guessing on what color thread would match it. Because I had no pins to mark the alterations I needed to make I had my sister put the dress on and just cut around the bottom edge slightly longer than it looked like it should be. The strap also needed to be shortened so I pinched it to where it should be and put a couple stitches in to hold it.
At least I had the excuse to say “If you move I will stab you!” to my frustrating little sister (the same one I ran the half marathon with).
And then there were the vests. There was one that was too big and one that was way too big. The third was okay and the fourth had gone home with the other ring bearer who wasn’t staying at the hotel so that fell under Not My Problem.
With no pins I had to get a little creative while fitting the vests.
Even with all that procrastination we made it to this wedding on time. Heck, we even had time to spare.
On the way to the wedding my oldest son asked what time the wedding started.
4:30 I informed him.
“Umm, mom, you might want to put the peddle to the metal then.” he replied.
“Psh, we’ve got plenty of time. We’re early.” I told him at 4:25 as we pulled into the church parking lot.