Merry Fa La La La La…

I have pneumonia.

The kids and the husband have all been sick too.

And the last several weeks we’ve combined our family superpowers to create the holiday schedule from the netherworld.

Doctor appointments, traveling, work, school, exams, projects, more work…

All culminating in a week of nightly 5-hour Christmas ballet rehearsals which went out with a 72-hour Christmas ballet extravaganza bang involving four performances from our resident 9-year-old aspiring prima ballerina.

I missed her last performance due to an urgent care visit and previously mentioned diagnosis of pneumonia.

Somewhere in the middle of all this, my Chrismas Spirit has gone AWOL.

Not so for the kids.

The kid’s Christmas Spirit showed up mid-September when all the department stores started sneaking Christmas items into the aisle next to the school supplies.

They have clung to it with mind-numbing tenacity ever since.

“How many more days until Christmas, Mommy?”

“When are we gonna get the tree, Mommy?”

“When are we gonna bring it out of the garage?”

“When will we put the lights on?”

“Are we ever gonna have a Christmas tree before Christmas is over, Mommy?”

Ad infinitum.

But by mid-morning all that had happened in the Christmas tree department was that our over-laden coat rack had been moved out of the entryway into the middle of the living room floor to make way for the Christmas tree to be brought up the stairs.

Don’t laugh at my piled-high coat rack.

I know you have one just like it or a closet that is just as bad if not worse.

At least that’s what I console myself with when I’m trying to get to sleep at night.

If you have an immaculate entryway be-decked and festooned like a Martha Stewart Living cover, just keep it to yourself for now, K?

Two sips into my morning coffee and the Christmas tree interrogation began again…

“Can we bring in the tree now, Mommy?”


“How ’bout now?”

Oh, and did I mention that our Christmas tree stand was no where to be found?

I couldn’t take it anymore.

I hacked and coughed my way to the downstairs closet, pulled out a string of lights, snipped out a yellow paper star and in two minutes had the coat rack… umm, coat TREE decked out and standing at the top of the stairs while the kids looked on with mouths agape.

“That’s NOT a Christmas Treeeeeeeeeee!!!” The youngest howled.

“It’s not even a tree at ALL!!!” The eldest chimed in.

I promptly Googled Coat Tree to prove that they were mistaken…

Mile Marker Twenty-Five…

I’ve never run a marathon. I probably never will. So the idea of referencing one here is somewhat absurd, but I feel somewhat justified in doing so.

If the past eleven years of my life don’t qualify as some sort of virtual marathon, then I don’t know what would.

And here’s the thing about marathons… they’re 26.2 miles.

Not 19.7 or 22.8 or 24.1 miles.

Twenty-six point two.

And in my little virtual marathon of life, I’m tired.

Tired is actually an understatement of offensively whopperish proportions.

I am head-hanging, chest-heaving, don’t-look-at-me-or-I-might-puke exhausted.

All I want to do at the moment is just sit here on the sidelines of my marked route and not move.

And think about things like breathing in and breathing out.

About sleeping and never having to put another foot in front of the other.

Because as far as I can see ahead, there is no finish line.

And the route isn’t paved.

It’s uphill, overgrown, marred by ankle-deep mud and occasional loose rocks.

And when I’m this tired I can’t help wondering to myself…

What if this is what the rest of my route looks like? What if there’s never another dry, smooth path? What if the rest is all uphill? What if every remaining mile is overgrown with thorns and poison oak?

So here I sit.

Contemplating the path ahead in-between ragged breaths.

And then I think to myself, what if this is mile marker twenty-five?

What if I’m almost there?

And I realize that I don’t really want to quit.

That it’s OK to be tired.

That I’m not a failure because I need to stop and catch my breath.

That resting doesn’t have to equate to giving up.

So don’t mind me while I sit here for a bit.

You go on ahead… I’ll catch up.

I promise.