My mother-in-law is horrified every time she asks me to remind her how early our day starts.
Me: I’m up at 5:45 for a workout. Scott’s alarm doesn’t go off too much after that.
M-I-L: When are the girls up?
Me: usually about 6:30.
M-I-L: oh, I just feel so bad for you. I always let the boys sleep in. That must be so rough.
Ah, the joys of working for yourself in a small town, where her commute was 5 minutes, and no one yelled at her if she was late*. But here’s the thing: it’s no rougher than when I was home with the girls and we had to get somewhere. The fights are all the same. The chaos is all the same. It’s just the time on the clock that’s different. If anything, I almost like it better. And not just because Scott takes the lead on the kids. Here’s why:
- When you’re tired, it doesn’t matter if it’s 5:45, 6:45 or 7:45 (especially in winter). It’s dark and your bed is warm and the world is harsh. As a mom of two, I never feel rested, even after an 8 hour sleep, so why not take advantage of always feeling tired and get something done?
- Sometimes Madeline is already up. It feels less early when she wakes at 6 and you’re usually up than when she wakes at 6 and you’re counting on another hour of sleep.
- C is never awake which is good because we can usually dress her before she becomes fully able to control her body and fight against whatever “roughily” (her word for not fleecy soft) outfit she chose herself last night (#threenager)
- I get to work anywhere from 10-30 minutes before my start time, so even on the most rushed days, I still have time to stop and grab breakfast, vent to a coworker, or zone out in front of my computer screen before I need to get down to business.
- We all are home by 5:15. 5:25 in a bad day.
Don’t worry. I know my mother-in-law means no judgment by it. We are both well aware we have different lifestyles and parenting styles. While they are still chaotic, rushed and feel too early, they work for us and that’s all that really matters.
*Disclaimer: my boss wouldn’t yell if I was late. She’d likely call me into her office to make sure everything is ok, because I am perpetually early and am often quoted as saying “if you’re not 10 minutes early, you’re already late”