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Overwhelmed, Underdressed, and On the Run

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Kimberly Seals Allers: Last weekend, I hid from my kids. And my wasband, actually.

It was his weekend and he keeps them until Monday morning and drops them off at school. That's the arrangement. Yes, I used to cry when I first stepped into the divorcing world of separate weekends and packing up the children. But I have grown to look forward to my time alone. And I need my time to work.

couple disagreeing

This past weekend especially. I had to keynote at a luncheon on Saturday, and on Sunday I had a big in-store appearance for the campaign for Teutonia strollers that I've been participating in. Even more stressful, I had a deadline to produce an important proposal by noon on Monday, and there was a PowerPoint and five pages of written pitching involved. PowerPoint is sooo not my thing!

After a successful appearance for Teutonia and fighting nearly two hours of traffic to get home, I finally threw on a T-shirt and sat down at my computer at around 5 PM to bang out this project. The way I figured, I could pump it out in about six or seven hours and then have enough time for a midnight glass of pinot grigio to toast the end of my childless weekend.

With so much to do, you can imagine my dismay, no, disgust, when the phone rang at around 7:00 PM, with the wasband claiming that he had "things to do" and needed to drop off the kids immediately. Seriously. I mean, don't I have things to do every day and I somehow have to get them done -- um, with the kids? This isn't the first time Mr. Man has pulled this type of stunt. He has his fill and decides the meter has run out on his weekend fathering. You'd think he and the live-in girlfriend could manage three nights. Usually, I give in and take the children, with a scornful "I won't have my children anywhere they are a bother" roll of the neck. But tonight I had too much to do. Besides, my kids are a bother to me at times too and I don't have anywhere to drop them!

So I took a lesson from my wasband's playbook and stopped answering the phone and started ignoring text messages. The kids were fine. I told him twice that I was working late, but didn't mention I was doing so from my kitchen table. Then I promptly backed my car out of the driveway, parked it around the corner, walked back to my house, and turned out any visible lights. I was not at home and I meant it. I know my wasband can do a drive-by drop-off at any notice.

And so I worked and worked until 4 AM, climbed into bed, and knocked out in just my T-shirt, and was awakened by my children beating up the doorbell. The wasband dropped them at home instead of school, although you have to pass both schools to get to my house. I jumped out of bed, braless, still in my T-shirt, threw on some (not really matching) track bottoms, and went about my day. My day of school drop-offs, work deadlines, PowerPoints gone bad, and incomplete to-do lists, then dinner, homework, and baths didn't give me one moment to come up for air. Let alone a shower and time to find a clean bra. So I sit here, still braless, exhausted, in the same T-shirt I slept in last night, bracing for tomorrow, wishing I could turn off the lights and hide out for just one more day.


next: The Not-So-Private Body
13 comments so far | Post a comment now
birdsfly June 7, 2009, 3:44 PM

My sympathies, what a jerk!

Monica June 7, 2009, 7:31 PM

What birdsfly said.

Christina Fiedler June 8, 2009, 12:51 PM

maybe he should rethink his weekend duties…

jennifer June 8, 2009, 1:24 PM

beautiful essay- my husband travels a lot so i often feel like a single mom. it seems as i am often subjugating my basic needs to take care of them. i rarely get to shower AND blow dry my hair in the morning. all i want to do is hide out from everyone and get my writing done, but it feels like a very far and distant idea.
thank you for giving me a relatable moment.

Just Sayin' June 8, 2009, 8:02 PM

Great writing. Sorry to say it took me about halfway thru to realize what ‘wasband’ meant but then it really made me laugh! Once I got used to it, I loved my alone time when my daughter was at her dad’s.

Kris June 18, 2009, 7:20 PM

What a selfish jerk! You would think that one weekend would be a piece of cake, but he can’t even make it that three days! Sounds to me like he is a child himself.

Morgan Co Prom Dresses December 11, 2010, 1:03 PM

I love quotations because it is a joy to find thoughts one might have, beautifully expressed with much authority by someone recognized wiser than oneself.

mens haircuts 2011 short sides January 22, 2011, 2:15 AM

Coming home from very lonely places, all of us go a little mad: whether from great personal success, or just an all-night drive, we are the sole survivors of a world no one else has ever seen.

Barbra Kuty March 16, 2011, 9:16 PM

terrible listing you possess

Veronica A. Barefoot March 29, 2011, 7:38 PM

Thanks

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Jeremy O. Goldman April 8, 2011, 8:39 AM

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