There are certain people who talk about “Mommy Brain,” as if one becomes a mother and gets a lobotomy on the same day. Someone suffering from “Mommy Brain” may leave the house without a full set of clothing. Or, she’ll get all the pieces, but maybe the socks don’t match. Sometimes the shoes won’t match. These things happen. But it’s not because she’s suddenly become quite stupid – oh, no. It’s the opposite.

Monday mornings are really my Saturday – I don’t have to work at my job, and everyone else in the house does. What’s-His-Name goes to work and Jillian goes to school and I get a chance to just GET THINGS DONE without people getting in my way or asking me for impossible things.

I tend to spend the first part of Monday morning with my *real* life partner, Coffee. We have a cozy relationship, Coffee and I. Some say it’s unhealthy and co-dependent, but to those people I say this: YOU DO NOT UNDERSTAND. So Coffee and I set up at Mission Control, in front of the laptop, with a notebook at hand. We take inventory of our life, and make notes.

This is where true Mommy Brain kicks in. For instance, I know there is a hamper of laundry upstairs, so that goes on my mental radar. The vacuum is still up there from last weeks burst of manic energy ended before I could get the whole bedroom swept. That goes on the mental list, too. The bathroom… that’s mostly okay, so can be safely ignored for the moment. I really should make the bed. Ooh, and we desperately need new bedding, so I make a mental note to start shopping around for that. The Tower of Yarn… let’s ignore that for the moment.

Moving on… the bookcases upstairs need some serious love. I need to cull the herd and dust the rest. There are things that can be tossed out and/or put into storage. I know there are Pez dispensers up there, they can go in the Pez bin downstairs. There are lots of Scrapbox things (ooh, mental note to the mental note – Scrapbox: When You Put All Your Memento Bullshit In A Box Because You Can’t Be Bothered to Make A Scrapbook) that need to find a home. This area needs to be swept, too.

Ditto the stairs, ew.

Entryway – needs to be swept and mopped, desperately. Talk to What’s-His-Name about fixing some of the tile grout. Clean up the dog food area. Look in Magical Closet of Wonder, decide it’s organized fine for now. Coat closet – shoes are out of control again, that needs to be fixed. There is a case of beer that needs a temporary home before it finds a permanent home in my belly. Okay, mental notes made. Moving on.

Now we’re in the kitchen. What’s in the freezer? What kind of dinner can I create with what I have… oh wait need some stuff from the store. Jot those things down in the notebook. The cabinet under the [drippy] sink is smelly again, need to get some Damp-Rid or similar until a permanent fix can be made. Good thing I organized all that stuff after I flooded the kitchen that day (don’t ask).

Countertops… put stuff away. Okay, done. What’s in the fridge… let’s get rid of some things that can probably talk at this point. Ew, the shelves in the fridge need to be cleaned. Actually, the whole thing could use a good scrubbing. Do we want to do that today? Maybe.

Okay, so we probably do have to hit the grocery store. Let’s look at the vague mental inventory of what we have in the house. This stuff is always in the back of my mind, because it’s part of running the household. What’s-His-Name couldn’t tell you the first thing about what kind of food we have in the pantry. This work is invisible.

While we’re making a grocery list, do we need other stuff like toilet paper, paper towels… cleaning supplies? Shampoo/soap for anyone? Maybe… Hmmm.

All this stuff is in my head.

Also, tonight we have a Brownie meeting. I need to call and see the status of my Co-leader application and schedule training sessions. I have to write up Jillian’s cookie order, decide if I have time to get the sewing machine out and sew patches on her vest (I don’t), figure out what dinner is going to be, since the meeting is at 6.

While we’re at it, let’s keep in mind the rest of the week. Skating and piano and a doctor’s appointment and I have a vague feeling there’s something I’m doing this weekend but I’m not sure. All of these things are on the calendar, but that doesn’t mean I can just forget about them. They’re still in my head so I can effectively plan the week. On top of that, I need to pay bills, remind What’s-His-Name for the eleventy-billionth time to fix the upstairs toilet seat, do laundry, get a plan together to organize the beer stuff, start pricing chest freezers for the basement, start thinking about this year’s garden, get a quote for front garden landscaping, get a quote for resurfacing the driveway, get an estimate on the truck’s front wheel bearings, get an estimate on the 43 things that What’s-His-Name’s car needs, go to the dry cleaner, take the dogs to the groomer (and maybe the cat, too), make vet appointments for everyone, and so much more.

Somewhere in this, I need to find time to work out, shower, dress myself, and eat.

This is why some of the moms in your life seem like they have no idea what they’re doing. In fact, they have ALL the ideas of what EVERYONE is doing, usually all at once. This is why moms seem so frazzled or spaced-out. This goes double for moms who work outside the home – I have no idea how those badass ladies juggle all this bullshit.

This is also why it seems like some moms seem to lose their identity as people. For some moms, that is probably okay with them, and was likely a Life Goal of some sort. But for others, it’s so difficult to get a handle on the Mom Stuff that the Person Stuff tends to take a backseat. That’s just how it is. I know it took me a good long time to get even halfway good at Life Stuff once the kid arrived. I used to do a lot more knitting. I used to play guitar (badly). Now, who has time? Between Mom Stuff and Job Stuff and Marriage Stuff, there’s not a whole lot of time left in the day for Me Stuff.

This is why my brain doesn’t work.

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