It'd be too easy to blame it on pregnancy brain.
But there I was, sitting in the gymnastics parking lot with two uniformed and very disappointed little kids because I had arrived at the right event, at the right time - on the wrong day. Again.
Just last week I misplaced some extremely important paperwork. This heart-stopping realization occurred right after I had buckled the kids into the car and prepared to rush us all to an appointment. I checked my bag. I checked the car. I even went back inside and checked the kitchen, bathroom, laundry room, and toddler's crib. Deciding that the only possible explanation was gremlins, I returned to the car to openly weep at a cluttered (and non-helpful) corner of the garage.
My kids, unfortunately, have witnessed more than their fair share of car weeping episodes during this pregnancy.
I consider myself to be a decently organized person. I mean, I've color-coded my books ('cause Real Simple said to do so) and filed my glassware by height ('cause I like to do so) and avoided collecting and spray-painting driftwood (even though Martha Stewart said to do so) because no one needs that kind of clutter. Bills get paid on time, laundry doesn't spill from the front door onto the sidewalk, and I manage to juggle a nice freelance career with the daily challenges/joys of raising vaguely clean children.
But now that I'm in my third trimester of my third pregnancy, things have gotten bizarre. I've been mixing up dates and times, forgetting checkbooks and spare PullUps, and seriously doubting my ability to coherently bring another child into the fray.
"Maybe it's time to invest in a good calendar," I can hear you saying. That's just the thing; it's not like I'm not penciling this stuff in. I do. Immediately. But lately I've been going back and double-checking those names and dates and times, only to find that the info I've been adding to the schedule in a timely and efficient manner - has been wrong. You know wacky things are afoot when you feel like you've been lying to your Google calendar.
I've never before even believed in pregnancy brain. I chalked that phrase up to something that men invented as a kind of inside joke catchphrase, like "morning sickness" or "equal pay."
However, there have just been too many recent times where I froze and looked around for the hidden camera because if this isn't an episode of Punk'd, then I may be at a very real risk for having suffered a mental break. Pairs of shoes should remain together and inside of the house! When I pull the car into the alley, I should remember immediately where we are heading! And if I add "dinner with Alphonse, 5pm" into the calendar, I'm not interested in hearing how we don't know anyone named "Alphonse" and historically eat dinner at 6pm!
I don't think that this is so much to ask. Unless you're my husband, I think we can all agree that I've been handling things rather well during this pregnancy; exhaustion, physical deterioration, and my predilection for public crying notwithstanding. It'd be nice if I didn't have to worry about my brain's functions being on the brink of collapse. It's no longer funny.
Unless this is for a reality show and I'll be getting paid handsomely. Then it's downright hilarious.
As long as the most flattering lenses are being used.
I wasn't kidding about the exhaustion.
Keely Flynn is a Chicago playwright, freelance writer, and blogger living with three young children, an extraordinarily tolerant husband, and two cats who just try to make it through the day without being ridden like ponies. Check out her personal blog, lollygagblog.com.
See more of Keely's stories here.