When your day starts at 5 am because your toddler is crying.
When the crying and fussing carry on for four hours until your husband gives you a reprieve by taking her out for a drive.
When you feel like you’ve wasted that reprieve napping instead of doing school work or laundry or dishes or or or.
When your toddler arrives home for a nap, but that nap only lasts an hour.
When she wakes up as miserable the second time as the first and you curse teething for the hundredth time.
When you can’t shake the memory of riding with her in an ambulance a week ago because she had woken up in the middle of the night struggling to breathe from croup. (She’s fine, but the memory remains.)
When you’ve wanted to stop nursing for a month, but something always gets in the way – flu, croup, teething, guilt, not wanting to deal with the inevitable tears.
When your husband is also sick and you feel like you should do more.
When it feels like it’s been hours but the clock tells you it’s been minutes.
When she blesses you with a second nap but you’re too exhausted and overwhelmed to enjoy it, much less do something productive with it.
When you know a walk outside would improve her mood for a little while, but your too worn out to get out the door.
When suppertime comes and you notice a discharge from her ear and realize it’s probably an ear infection and that probably contributed to her irritability and you probably should have noticed it sooner.
When her bedtime finally comes and you know you should spend the evening doing schoolwork but you make excuses for why you shouldn’t have to, not tonight. Not last night either.
When you spend your evening watching TV and playing games on your phone, all the while agonizing over the hundreds of pages of reading you have to do, and the four essays that will follow that reading and the deadlines for it all.
When procrastination wins, again.
When your to-do list gets longer, again.
When it all just feels like too much, all you can do is write about it, and then go to bed early, trusting that tomorrow will be better.
Tomorrow will be better.