Every morning I wake up in a state of shock. I'm still here? The world has still gone mad? And also I feel kind of crazy. Wait... this shit is still going on? That lunatic is still in office? And this is still my life? I'm still raising kids? It's been 28 years? Does it ever end? NO!
How do I know? Because some teenage girl is asking me to do something. At 7:30 a.m.! After a few seconds, I realized, oh, yes, that's my daughter, Audrey, this is my bed, I have to get up and start life.
Audrey: Mom, wake up. I've covered in bug bites. Or fleas.
Me: What? Who? Do I have to get up?
Audrey: It's pretty bad. I have bites everywhere. Maybe you should look at them.
Me: No, that's okay. Just try not to sweat today.
Audrey: Oh, and I used all the Calamine lotion so can you get some more?
My head was back under the pillow. How is this a thing? She's an indoor cat. I hate fleas. Fuck fleas.
Before I even attempt life, I have to have coffee. Stumbling down the hall zombie mom fashion, suddenly feeling all itchy, I'm sure I was grumbling under my breath, "If one person says good morning I will stab them."
I was pissed off and on a mission. All I wanted to do is put that flea repeller on the cat. It must be done immediately. I boil water for the coffee then open the junk drawer. This particular drawer is actually very organized. There are a few handy tools like a peen hammer and the cat crap.
I yank the cap of the tube, scoop up Socks and slather it all over the back of her neck. One crisis solved. I know I will have to wash/boil all the bedding, but coffee, paper, and a pathetic attempt at meditating and then maybe.
I notice the cat is squealing but I figure that's normal. But then Socks gives me this death glare.
I notice my fingers have a sticky substance on them. Gross. I try to wash off the cat back poison and it won't come off. Weird. For a second I thought it might make a good facial mask.
The cat is still howling. My daughter is now getting upset. The cat is going berserk.
Audrey: What is wrong with Socks? She's jumping all over. Why is her fur so hard?
Me: I put that flee stuff on her back. That's a normal reaction.
This daughter never trusts anything I say, so she checked the organized junk drawer.
Audrey: Mom, it's super glue. OMG! She's going to die!
Just then her twin (Evelyn) rambles out of her bedroom. This girl is usually long gone by now, off in her carpool. I rarely see her in the morning because she's gone before I wake up.
Ev: Mom, I overslept and missed the carpool.
Me: WHY DID YOU DO THAT?
Ev: It happens. Can you drive me? Also, fill my lunch card.
Me: No! I'm having my coffee and need to calm down. Everyone leave me alone.
Meanwhile, Audrey has been Googling "what happens when a cat gets superglued?" Apparently, there are tons of websites, examples, it must happen a lot.
Audrey: Mom, Socks could die! It's toxic. Dad!! Mom maybe killed Socks!
Normally their father is already gone, but for some reason he overslept! I didn't even notice him.
Dad enters. "Why is Evelyn here?"
Me: Okay okay I superglued the cat and Evelyn missed the carpool. Can you quick drive her to school and drop the cat off at the vet.
Dad is a calm presence and also knows I'm the worst kind of morning person so he treads lightly like this is no big deal. Maybe he once glued a cat. He checked the packaging.
Dad: Yep. Super glue. I can't believe this doesn't happen more often. They look exactly the same.
Me: See! The tubes look exactly the same!
Me: Well, they should make the print bigger!
Dad: I can barely make it out with my glasses on.
Me: See! Also, that's the flea repellent drawer, not the glue drawer.
Ev: Well, the fleas are probably dead in that one hard spot.
I'm still in denial about even needing glasses. I wear reading glasses. But I don't put them on when I wake up. I take them off after I'm done reading for the night, then collect them around 8:00 the next morning after everyone is gone and I can read the paper. Who puts their glasses on first thing?
Nobody! And that's how cats get glued.
Anyway, I'm sure Socks is fine, getting a lovely bath and shave. Meanwhile, I'm getting the hell out of here before the kids get home.
Rhonda Talbot weighing in on parenting, cats, sleep deprivation, sight deprivation, teenage girls, superglue, mornings, life.
PostScript - Socks is home, fine, washed, happy... and has a little bald spot. Plus, bonus, she was incredibly happy to see me. I thought she'd be mad but she's a good sport.