As in Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings.
As in stressed to the max trying to get five little bodies (not to mention my own) out the door every night by 6:00.
Which means giving them dinner at 5 o’clock instead of the usual time, which is when Daddy gets home around 7:30. (I like to pretend we’re European.)
Which means having the van and the diaper bag and my bag packed & ready for our departure. (They never are.)
And which means having the house tidied up so that it’s presentable when we stagger home for snacks & showers two hours later. (It never is.)
Etc. etc. etc.
So how are all the rest of you Little League mothers faring? “Soccer Mom” indeed. It’s the baseball thing that has me chasing.
I will say, however, that I am always thankful for the reinstatement of an old tradition, which is to pray a decade of the Rosary on the way to the field for the intentions of the brother who’s playing.
Tonight, for example, was John Michael’s first game (after two weeks of practice). He was concerned because it looked like rain, so I told him to pray to St. Mathias. “Given it’s his feast day, he’s got some extra pull with God,” I explained.
I was backing down the driveway when I heard one of those heart-stopping, give-me-another-8-gray-hairs-to-go-with-the-other-80 shrieks that every mother loathes.
It was John Michael.
“It looks like the heavens are opening and Mathias is sending down help!”
At which point Maria sang (to the tune of Handel’s chorus), “Hallelujah!”
I proceeded to invoke the patron saint of annoying children (whoever he or she may be) and we began our decade.
Thus we commence another season of baseball.
Perhaps by the end of it I will have learned:
- To beat my older children with a broom until they remember that they are responsible for getting the smaller siblings’ shoes on;
- To not freak out when my preschooler has to run around the playground in bare feet;
- To overcome my anal-retention regarding my children’s use of porta-potties. (And I’m sure there’s a joke there somewhere, but “there” is where I won’t go, so don’t worry.)
- To be okay with missing most of my sons’ games because of the squirmy girls who’d rather play;
- To not be okay with some of the language I hear among the shiftless middle-schoolers hanging out on the swings, and (in my best “cool older lady” imitation) go over to say, “Hey guys? Could you not talk like that around my kids?”
- To resist the temptation to take far more blurry, back-of-the-head photos than I (or anyone) cares to see.
- And finally, to be very, very proud of my handsome athletes.
Because they are why we put up with this.