Thursday, July 05, 2007

Stay Up Late

So I just can't get to bed on time. And with the crazy summer dawn, the babies, they wake up WAY TOO EARLY. Every morning when they call over the monitors, I say to myself, Tonight, I SWEAR I am going to bed at nine! I swear! I'll get more than eight hours; I'll feel great tomorrow!

And then I spend all day running after the tinies, and their naps are short and their fists are fierce and their meals are screechy and each one is an EMERGENCY--Good Lord the food it cannot come quickly enough we have never eaten before we are STARVING TO DEATH here Mama, more food NOW!--and when they are both finally tucked in bed at 7 or 7:30 or whatever time they give up the day, how can I accept only 90 minutes of evening me-time before going to bed? An hour and a half? To read the new New Yorker and surf all the good cable and check all the blogs I didn't get to during the too-short naps? And what about the non-entertainment, self-maintenance activities: the re-polishing of the chipping toenails, the bathing? Five days a week I actually exercise (I know! Five! Crazy.), and then 9 p.m. comes and there I am still in my running clothes, I'm still stretching my scarily achy joints (I know! I'm old.), and there's still the shower, the washing of the hair (well. sometimes.), the wait for the hair to dry before bed, and did I mention the New Yorker? It comes every week. I end up getting my alone-time second wind, and stay up until 11 in a blissful frenzy of simple pleasures.

Summer is the worst for this, because my favorite time to run is dusk, after the harsh sun has sunk and the hot winds have calmed, and now?--dusk is at, like, 9 p.m. I never actually go that late, but I'm tempted, because I've had it with running the hilly county roads out here on the edge of town in hot, bright, sunny wind. So hot. So bright. So windy. But there's nothing like running--or walking, or biking--through summer twilight, when the kids are being called in and the sky is turning purple and life seems perfect.

And then you get home and it's already past your bedtime and there's so much still to do, so much bubble bath, so much media, so much writing, so much air coming in the screens, smelling like grass and wind and cornfields. And so of course. You stay up late.

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