I’m just going to stop going to bed. There is no sense in it. I am up until at least 10 p.m. getting my house in order, packing lunches, folding laundry, and so on. Then I wake up at midnight. Then I wake up again at 2 a.m. Then I wake up at 4 a.m. Sometimes I actually have to get out of bed to give my fussing baby a binky (oh, the humanity); sometimes I bring him to bed with me to help him settle down and to snuggle. Full-time work does not leave me enough cuddling time with my baby. But then I lay there (lie there?) listening to him snort and whistle, suck on his binky, and breathe.

Think of all the things I’ll get done: the thank-you cards for Michael’s baptism (more than a month ago); exercise; more blog posting! Of course, I’m losing coherency as it is — less sleep, if it’s possible to get even less sleep, is really going to mess me up.

What I really want is a night that I don’t wake up. At all. A night that I sleep from 10 at night until 5 in the morning. It’s still not 8 hours, but I’ll take shorter hours if I can get them in one big, lovely, uninterrupted chunk.

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I’m not sure I’m going to bother making dinner anymore. When we get home in the evenings, my daughters descend on the refrigerator and the pantry with its store of snacks, and before I can even get warmed over leftovers on the table, they have had two packets of fruit snacks and three cheese sticks each. If I put these things out of reach, I will never have peace, nor will I be able to tend to Michael effectively, but I’m tired of my healthy meals going to waste. You would think that maybe weekends would be better, that we would have the opportunity to eat as a family.

You would be wrong. I cooked a nice dinner yesterday, but while I was out shopping, and fighting with Kate (see below), Dan fixed himself a pizza, so he wasn’t hungry. Once dinner was made, the girls were more interested in playing the Wii than eating. But I was starving, and I knew I had to tend to Michael. So I let Dan continue to play the Wii with the girls; I had dinner while Michael hung out; then I got him to bed. The girls declared they were hungry at 7 p.m., and I made Dan feed them so I could stay with Michael.

I’m tired of struggling for family meal time that no one seems to care about but me.

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I am also going to stop taking Kate out in public with me. Especially shopping. Every step in a shopping trip with Kate is a fight. She wants to walk, but she won’t stay near me; she wants to touch everything, and sometimes everyone; I put her in the cart, and she climbs out. She threatens to throw things out of the cart; she threatens to throw things at me; she tells me she hates me; she threatens to kick/scratch/bite me.

I threaten to cry, and turn her over to her father when we return home.

I’m not kidding, and I’m not exaggerating. Of the, say, five trips I have taken outside of the house with the girls lately, on four of them Kate has been impossible to handle. I would throw in the towel and stop shopping altogether, but I have to get out of my house some how, some time.

What am I doing wrong? What can I do better?

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