CVT Day 55 – The charging station

Better than an electric jump-start.

I hate you, slumber. When my body gives out to you, despite a To-Do list yards long.

As May snowflakes poured down, and my usual 6 am Saturday writer-reverie got Tasked til it sadly faded, the caffeine stopped working. Even the tasks I like – breadbaking – became irritating. I spent 90 minutes obsessing over the weekly social story I create prior to the boys’ speech therapy session, to facilitate “what did we do this week?” conversations – to the point I barely had time to brush my teeth, and zero to primp yet another bad hair day from showing my reality as a strung-out, doing too much mom.

Zoom speech therapy is a hit or miss activity lately. Today was worse than usual, with Will’s seeming progress evaporating at following directions from this talking head that used to be in his kitchen, now on Mom’s laptop. The social story didn’t appeal to them one bit. Jeff’s new meds, if they ever worked, certainly didn’t today, and his self-talk meant probably 20 reminders to use your quiet mouth during a 30 minute session.

Nothing can sink your heart like your kids working on a simple skill for about three or four years, only to fail at it time and again – as if you, parent, hadn’t done anything at all.

We knew a cooped-up, bad weather day would spell trouble. So we treated ourselves to a Chipotle wrap lunch, and told the boys well in advance on the family daily schedule so there was a reward after speech and household clean-ups. It was hand-delivered by our lovely daughter who was out doing several store runs so she could prepare a sumptuous vegan feast, and bring home Mothers Day surprises.

The boys needed continued structure after lunch, more time being “helpers,” my mind said. Over across the room, I heard the fluffiness of the blanket whisper. Come. I slept for over two hours.

Guilty, decadent, a tiny bit panicked about time lost on my single-spaced scrawl of a Chores column, I looked over instinctively to find them. Both boys in their La-Z-Boys, a little stimmy but actually not bad. Paul and Jenn were here, reading, relaxing. Maybe everyone’s batteries needed charging.

The sun floated in and out of clouds, such that we snuck in a brief neighborhood walk. Braving the bluster, I thought about our last real mountain hike on March 17, the day life changed. The crunch of the snow. The hug of my buff neck gaiter across my hair, back when it was a defense against wind chill not social distance apparel. I felt I’d wasted today. So much still undone. Yet as Jenn joined us, there was symmetry, and balance more than I’d known in the morning. No one else was out walking but we five intrepid COVID warriors. As usual. I laughed. Blanketed in changing weather, our family blessedly together when so many others are not, there was Jenn’s vegan feast ahead, and the usual Will disrobe prevention that hits this hour of the day. She was making something that translated to Garden of Nine Delights, where coconut-milk sauce blanketed rough-hewn vegetables, and earthly imperfection stewed and rested in the sweetness of home-made sauce.