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Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Aside from an early morning, butt-kicking run with my neighbor/running buddy, Andrea, my quality “Me-Time” for the day was spent in a chair at the dentist’s office. Since when did 45 minutes of teeth-scraping torture become a brief (and sadly welcome) vacation from the chaos of my life?! And tonight, the chaos in the chaos of the Martin home reached a whole new level – a decibel level, that is. Zachary has become a screamer. Not really a sad screamer, more of a I’ll scream because I can and for no apparent reason kind of a screamer. Do you know that kind? I hope you don’t. It’s loud, UNBELIEVABLY L-O-U-D…and shrill…and painful. Matthew, quite some time ago found a good use for the “Martin Ears” (one could call them large-ish) – he literally folds them over to block out loud noise that he doesn’t care for. Apparently the Ears aren’t even enough for Zach’s screaming, so Matthew has combined the Ears with another philosophy, “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.” So, alas, tonight while attempting to make dinner over a chorus of high-pitched, blood-curdling screams, I found myself daydreaming back to my moment of peace in the dentist’s chair.

Now, if you’ve been actively following along with the Saga of a Stressed-Out Mama, you’ll know that I’m really into the self-help, self-discovery, self-medication (my preferred legal stimulant being caffeine, of course), Zen voyage that I’m taking right now. I’m trying to discover the true essence of Jenny – to fully connect with and embrace the Jenessence. So, in the middle of the screaming chaos in my kitchen, I found myself automatically traveling to the world of self-help. My thoughts went as follows: OK. OK. They’re screaming. Matthew’s got a cold and doesn’t feel well, he didn’t nap today, he’s screaming because Zach is screaming and Zach is screaming because he’s teething and because he’s turned into – God help us – a Screamer. A bunch of howler monkeys on crack have taken over my kitchen. They’re STILL screaming. I can’t seem to get them to stop. When do the parents come home to take care of these crazy children, so I can go back to my house? Right, crap; I’m the parent. No longer the babysitter, I’m the parent; I gotta figure this out. OK, what did my latest self-help book tell me? Right. “When you discover yourself in fight or flight mode, that means that you are stressed.” Um, duh. Obviously I’m stressed right now – they are screaming, SCREAMING! “Stop your stressed-out self-talk and ask yourself, ‘Is my self-talk leading me towards or away from my goal?’” My goal right now is to make them stop screaming! OK, maybe this self-help crap really is just a bunch of hoo-ie. Who am I kidding anyway? Maybe I’m being bogged down by all this self-help stuff. I’m in a self-help rut. I should write a book, The Self-Help Book for When You’re in a Self-Help Rut. That’s catchy. OK, but that doesn’t help the fact that they’re STILL screaming…

And so on. Welcome to my life!

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