Friday, March 17, 2017

A Day in the Life of Mother Encyclopedia

A typical day looks like this:

* Dragging myself out of bed at 7:30 (If I'm feeling energetic, I may come out earlier, but 7:30 is a pretty steady one)
* Dragging the 6 year old opinionated rebel (not to mention a smartypants who asks questions from the moment he opens his eyes right till he closes them back again at 9:15 pm) out of bed, normally with a dose of some facts he doesn't already know.......(a tough feat, considering that his 'pastime' is to browse through Discovery's Encyclopedia, a 6 volume series which is a family inheritance)
* If somehow, I manage to dazzle him with my early-morning-brilliance, he crawls out of bed and demands a five-reason-booklet-for-why-he-should-brush-his-teeth the first thing in the morning. And you people wonder how I'm creative? You must be kidding me! Art'zire takes WAY less effort.......
* The 'military drill' of brushing his teeth happens while I "remote-guide" it from the kitchen. My senses are so tuned to every bristle of his brush moving on his teeth that miss one stroke and I grow Dracula teeth! How well he brushes his teeth is directly proportional to how well I make breakfast (that explains the burnt aroma my husband often 'panic-wakes' up to)
* If the food isn't charred to death, it makes it to the table, along with a fresh-brewing vat of "How does the food get cooked?" soup! If I recorded all our conversations, I could be running a 10 year "Popular Science" Quiz series on TV (and I won't even be watching it, because I don't have a TV).
* By this time, it's time to decide whether hunting for his shoes is more important, or chasing him to eat his breakfast, wolfing down my own breakfast or getting him to finish his homework, which he didn't do the last evening because his little toe looked a bit under the weather. A little "Can you make a coffee for me?" typically also adds to the morning music! Aka husband is up!
* If I act selfish and sit down to eat with 'this little fact machine I part blame for my knowledge halo', I am treated to more of "Which one is your favourite meat-eating large dinosaur Mumma?". By the time I deconstrust that question, the next one is hurled at me, "Mumma, how does a car work?". And before I finish my sentence, "The engine inside the car works by burning a petrol-air mixture in a process called"............"Combustion", he chimes in (Why am I even bothering to answer!). Next, "Why is my name Anvesh?".............child, ask one more question and I just may hide in my closet and never come out!
* To my relief, husband is up by this time and tries to help (he often succeeds but there are times I wish he was still asleep!). These two together are worse than Anvesh alone! It is their life's mission to start getting to know the animal Kingdom, starting at 8:54 am. I often end up being the Hitler in this "Gyaan acquisition" session with my patent sentence, "If you two want to discuss animals so much, start at 5:30 am, not at 9!", and am promptly met with eyes that convey to me what I've secretly know all along! Mom IS the Hitler reincarnate!
* If, by some miraculous twist of Fate, I manage to get him to have a bath and ready by 9:25 am, we skid to the elevator (and the 8 floor elevator ride feels like the Grand Inquisition). Everything from "I know I came out of your tummy, but I want to know how I got there" to "Mumma, look at my imaginary pet otter" (when I stare at some random likely spot, he admonishes me for looking in the wrong place!). Sometimes, he hands me his bag because his imaginary pet is asleep in his arms and he can't carry his bag! Didn't I hear someone say they wanted to take Anvesh to their house for 2 days? Is the offer still valid, I wonder!
* Once I've dropped him, there are sometimes chores to do, like bread/dosa batter/eggs are over, so make a shop-trip and get them. Back home by 10 am, I have Admin work to do on the computer for Art'zire. Finish that and it's 10:30 and the Team is in! Discuss ideas, order list, priorities, parcels to be dispatched etc and it's 11 am.
* The cook comes in at 11:30 and the day he decides to not come is the day I'd have already soaked something (so I need to cook it! Damn!) or realize at 12 noon that he hasn't come! Dosa batter would die on me that very day! Onions would be over too! And if I'm lucky, the nearby Departmental stores will be off for Friday afternoon namaaz. This is when I cook the worst I can manage to! Peas pulao is my go to!
* AND before I've breathed a sigh, it's time to bring the mini-Lawyer back! He starts with his questions the moment he smells me in the corridor of his school. This time, I'm better equipped (not at answering, but at deflecting!). Everything is: Let's reach home, then I'll tell you. Back home, he makes a ceremony out of getting into the house, taking his socks off, setting his bag on the sofa...........and when asked to change his t-shirt, he changes into the smallest possible or worst looking piece of clothing in his wardrobe! Like, clothes from the time he was 3 years old! All summer long, he wears full sleeves and during winter, vests! Someone forgot to look out of the window to check what the weather was like!
* I get back to the work desk to work and within half hour, he has read (or worse, imagined) some fun fact and he wants to know if his mother knows it! Interspersed in this half hour are a gazillion Whatsapp messages, Intercom calls (for courier, for milk delivery, for Satan, for his mother!) and queries on Art'zire pages. And I need to get some work done myself too!
* By 2 pm, he declares he's hungry and takes anything from 3.4 minutes to 2 hours to eat his food, depending on the menu. All this time, you've to know the amount of protein, carbohydrate and vitamin content (exact mathematical numbers, right down to the third decimal place, mind you!) of the food he's eating! If he's in a mood, he may ask me to sacrifice a goat to finish off the data. With a mix of "My Little Prince", begging and threatening, I manage to get the food into him (and in my absence, poor Richa/Uttara are the villains by association) and then, try to get some work done again!
* By this time, Anvesh declares himself bored and is prostate on the floor in Art'zire work room! No amount of scolding works to get him off there, because the moment you scold, he reminds me of the love letter he wrote to me 6 months ago and how much he loves me! Dang, this emotional blackmail.....if you've to keep him occupied, it keeps YOU occupied too, right? Right!
* Whether the Earth goes round the sun or not, 4 pm happens EVERY DAY! How do I know? Because from after his lunch is over, he chants for his "snack" at 4 pm! Milk with saffron and almonds and a fruit/biscuit to him later, I'm ready to retire forever!
* At 5, he has to be dropped to Basketball class and sometimes, I wish his class would go on for ten years! :D Once it's over, I'll pick up a 16 year old! ;)

* At 6, bring him back, and he's hungry again! After bargaining for washing his hands and face, comes homework! I bless the days he doesn't have any! Because the day he does, it feels like I have homework too! ANd bless him, he's not difficult or anything. It is just that he doesn't get the point of having to write the cursive g 20 times! He would much rather dissect a rat or go to Amazons to study the piranhas.........why cursive g? I'm thinking, because that's what I can afford? :D Amazon is a bit of a far cry!
* At 8:00, after his dinner, he's ready to go to Youtube to watch some other Godforsaken information series (Discovery/NatGeo, screw you! You guys make me feel like an illiterate!)......
* Finally, I get one hour to work non-stop or exercise, on good days!........exactly at 9, computer shuts down (I have FINALLY learnt how to schedule the shutdowns).......and he complains, heartily......he calls up every person he can find the phone numbers of, to complain what a monster his mother is! And even scolded his father for teaching his mother how to schedule takes me all my willpower to not burst out laughing......
* At 9:15, he has to be in bed, but it ain't happening without a story! There comes Geronimo Stilton! Now, I like Geronimo but some inspired soul (aka my spouse) invented a "voice" for each character. And if the character's voice isn't replicated, the story is deemed wrong and Mumma, useless! He dictates how I speak, so that all characters seem genuine (some day, I'd like to tie Ananth up and lock him up in the cupboard till he invents the time machine and goes back to erase the day he committed this heinous crime!)........through my yawns, I manage to read him the story. Some days, he loves his mother's voice, and demands a song. A story and song later, he asks just a "couple more" questions, "Why does only female mosquito bite at night Mumma?", "What is Universe inside?", "Do you believe in God and why not?", "How do my glow in the dark stickers work?"..........I pretend to be deaf and sometimes, dead, to avoid answering these questions! Because an alert Anvesh is an awake Anvesh!
* Once he is fast asleep (thank God, he is a sound sleeper), I need to do more things. Cleaning up the kitchen, my dinner, sending invoices, working, baking, invoking the Gods to tie Anvesh's tongue every time he cross questions me :D By the time I'm through, it's around 11:00 and I'm ready to die! But wait, I forgot I need to stay up to speed with the trends in jewellery/accessories. So, I do lots of googling, reading, looking up images, getting to know who's doing what, what's happening in the world and as soon as I hit the bed, I'm dead to the world............
* And yeah, I'm optimistic! I still have alarms for exercise at 5:45 am (and no, I haven't exercised at that time in ages!)...........some day buddy, some day........