To get 5 minutes to herself, the modern day woman gets up at 5.30am. She just wants to sip that first cup of coffee, before the rest of the household wakes up. At 5.35, bubs starts crying, so yep; 5 minutes of peace is literally 5 minutes of peace.
She does the whole 5.30am mum routine; feeding, changing and expressing for the rest of the day. Heaven forbid, she could have her baby on formula to make life easier. By then, an hour has passed and it’s time to wake the rest of the family.
After entering each bedroom, at least a dozen times, it’s around 7.30. In the meantime, she’s managed to prepare lunches and has breakfast under-way. Hubby strolls in, yawning and looking for his freshly made coffee. The kids are yelling and arguing in the hallway and finally make it to the table. At least they’ve managed to get half dressed for school. Now, it’s mum’s turn for a shower and get ready for “work”. Mind you, what the heck has she been doing since 5.30. It doesn’t sound like play, so it must be… Work! Not that anyone actually notices.
After her 2-minute shower, in which she washed her hair and entire body, shaved her underarms and legs and brushed her teeth; she takes another 2 minutes to get dressed and ready. Thank goodness, she went for that no-fuss hair do. She piles the kids and their gear into the car, including bubs, who has the latest in confusing car seats.
She drops the kids to school and bubs at daycare. As she turns the corner, there’s that familiar early morning workers traffic, and that’s where she does her makeup. The modern day woman has amazing multitasking skills. After taking half an hour to move 5 blocks, she reaches her workplace.
She works through lunch and opts for an extra cup of coffee instead. By 3pm, her day isn’t anywhere near done and she’s exhausted. She struggles through another couple of hours and knocks off at 5pm; only to hit the workers traffic as she drives back to the daycare. When she gets there, she’s informed bubs has been asleep since after lunch and they didn’t want to wake her. Oh joy. That’s totally worth the $150 a day, she’s paying in childcare fees! She picks up bubs and she opens her eyes like it’s 5.35am and ready for a new day.
Next stop is after-school care, where her other kids are waiting impatiently. Once again, they are the last to be picked up. The staff gives the modern day woman an unpleasant glare and she piles her crew in the car once again. As the kids bicker on the way home, hubby, who is already there, texts the eldest child that there is no milk or bread left. Of course there isn’t, she thinks to herself. So, she makes a detour to the supermarket, with the 2.4 kids she has with her and manages to snag a check out which doesn’t cost her an extra $20 in treats.
When they get home, they pile into the house and the modern day woman is carrying bubs, the shopping, school bags and her oversized handbag. Luckily, she has developed the upper body strength of an Olympic ultra-heavyweight lifter. She spots hubby sitting on the lounge, feet up, watching TV. How nice for him, she thinks to herself sarcastically. He couldn’t have ducked out and bought the milk and bread from the supermarket? She gives him a quick peck on the cheek, whilst hiding her disapproval and puts bubs on his lap, so she can head to the kitchen.
After chopping up 10 different types of veggies, because she needs to keep her family healthy, dinner is made. Luckily, hubby knows how to load the dishwasher and do a half-arsed kitchen clean-up. She runs a bath for bubs, who seems to have gained even more energy and she splashes water over most of the bathroom. The kids are next. They complete bubs work, plus find several bottles of shampoo and conditioner to make bubbles. Great. She makes a mental note to buy more on her imaginary shopping list.
When bedtime comes around, the kids get a story and bubs gives modern day woman grief. She tries the controlled crying thing, which lasts about 2 minutes. That’s when hubby finally steps in. Ahhh, relief! It seems though, that he may have an ulterior motive. As modern day woman finally crawls into bed at 11pm, hubby wants to play. Seriously! She gives him 2 minutes of pleasure and he rolls over and starts snoring.
Finally, she thinks. She shuts her eyes and before she knows it, the alarm is going off and it’s 5.30am the next day. At least bubs slept through the night. She sneaks downstairs for her first cup of coffee and her literal 5 minutes of peace.
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Kim is a writer and SHESAID's resident psychologist. A self-proclaimed tomboy who understands more about relationships and men than she ever will about glitz and glamour. Follow Kim on Google+.