My daughter broke her toe. You probably already knew that since I posted it to Instagram. Not only did she break her toe, but she also chipped a bone in her foot. Kids, am I right? The Hubbs and I were pretty much convinced that it was just a stubbed toe, but the next day she still couldn't put weight on it and x-rays confirmed a "fracture". That's what The Hubbs told me over the phone, "a fracture". Over the phone, because I was at work. I was working and couldn't take her to the hospital, and I automatically defaulted to guilty.
It didn't really get any better from there. I was also going to miss her follow up with the orthopedist two days later. Yes, I had to work again. And my schedule was so out of whack, that I felt like I had missed days of being home with both girls. So the Thursday before school was going to start, I left work well after five, and headed home to sit and enjoy the last moments before we were back to reality. Summer had come and gone and I had spent many moments at work or at home, too tired from work to really enjoy anything. It's sad but true.
I'd like to say that Thursday night delivered for us. That we were able to enjoy each other's company, and enjoy one of our last nights without homework or projects or even some sort of thrown together schedule. But it didn't. Thursday didn't deliver. Thursday was a disaster. Thursday was a shit show.
Caitlin was understandably tired and freaked out at the air cast and wrap up to her knee. She was having trouble getting comfortable, and after a day spent on and off crutches, she was exhausted. She started to whine and fuss about eight thirty and so I decided that the three of us, Caitlin, Mac, and me would pile into my bed and watch really horrible but entertaining cartoons provided by Cartoon Network. It seemed to work for awhile until Caitlin couldn't take the restraint on her leg and lost it. Like one hundred and ten percent lost it. She started crying and nothing, not even chocolate could make her stop. I tried to breathe. I tried to remind myself that she was probably in pain. I tried to remind myself that she probably just needed her mom. So I laid in the middle of the two girls and listened to the tears and the whining. It wasn't fun, but I was doing my best to power through.
Then Mackenzie started in. She was tired too, and now we were approaching nine thirty and her sister was still crying. Now Mac was crying too, because as she put it, "she missed me", she "never gets to see me", and that "you are always at work mommy". OUCH. Again, I took some deep breaths. I explained that Mommy just had one more day of work and then I would be off all day Saturday. I apologized for not being home, and I told her I missed her too. And then I did some more breathing, and then Caitlin said she missed me too, and then it was a fight to the finish to see who could cry more.
In that moment I realized that there was not enough mommy to go around. It was one of my biggest fears when I was pregnant with Mackenzie. Would there be times when I just couldn't be in two places at once? Would I have enough love for both? Let me tell you, love is not the problem. The problem is physical. I cannot cut myself in half, although, after almost two hours of crying, I was almost willing to try. So I did what most mothers would do in this situation.
I lost it. I gave in to the shit show. And I put on an even better one.
I sobbed. Right in the middle of those two crying girls, who looked at me in the dark, with only the light of the TV to guide them. There is not enough Amazing World of Gumball to shield you from your mothers breakdown. Sorry kids, but sometimes mommies have to let go too. So I let go with those sobs that only come from your gut.
I'm sure the Hubbs thought we were all headed for the loony bin.
The worst part about losing it all together? The girls apologized to me. As if they had reason to be sorry for breaking their mother in such a way that she sounded like a wounded animal and had mascara running down her face like some death metal band. The apologies only made it worse, only made my gut hurt more, only made me sob harder. But when I was able to pull it together I told them:
Mommy tries really hard to be here; Mommy loves you both very much; Mommy is really sorry that you both need me right now, and you have to share; Mommy tries.
There will never be enough Mommy to go around. Try as I might, I can't just cut my self into two pieces when they both need me at the same time. What I can do is remind them and me that there will always be enough love to go around. Even when it's hard, even when it hurts, there will always be enough love.
So yeah, Caitlin broke her toe, the week before school started. I worked the entire week before summer. And it was kind of a shit show. Then I woke up the next morning and did it all over again. Well, not the shit show part, but the work and broken toe, and the let's get ready for back to school part. Because just like there is never enough mommy, there is also never enough time to have multiple shit shows in a row.