I was sitting in an exam room waiting for my doctor to pop in and I didn’t have anything to do but read the signs and posters on the wall. So I did. All of them. I can now name all of the parts of my lady anatomy in graphic detail and I can also tell you how dangerous Whooping cough can be. I memorized every stage of fetal development and can now recite the phone number to sign up for the local hospital maternity tour. I’m also aware that it is my responsibility, and mine alone, to make sure my insurance plan is accepted by all medical referrals I receive. In short, I’m practically a walking encyclopedia on maternal health in a rural town in South West New Mexico.
One thing that especially caught my eye was a sign urging people to “Sign up to access your medical records online today!” It caught my eye because it was displayed on three different walls. Plus, getting information out of my doctor is like pulling teeth. Having access to my records would be really helpful. I’m the kind of person that feels better with more information instead of less. I want to analyze results and compare them to past tests and Google them to my hearts content. It’s one of the things I live for.
Anyway, on the way out of the office I stopped by the front desk and asked if I could sign up to view my records online. The receptionist at the front desk looked up at me with confusion. I told her I had read the sign posted all over the walls and thought it would be a good idea to sign up. Finally a look of recognition swept over her face and she said, “Oh, that system has been down for about three months.” Then she leaned towards me and whispered, “Besides, the doctor doesn’t give you access to anything like test results so accessing your records online here is pretty much useless.”
So, there you have it. Life in a small town. Sometimes it’s maddening. Sometimes it is funny. Sometimes it is both. There are always outdated things posted to walls and information is so valuable even doctors hoard it.
If one more thing spills today I am going to lose my mind. For the love of God, People, keep it in your cup! It’s been one of those days. As a mother, an owner of dogs, and a wife to an often slightly oblivious husband, I do my fair share of cleaning up spills every single day of my life, but sometimes there is a day where spillage maximus occurs. This is the story of one of those days.
Every morning, after my husband leaves for work, I clean up the spilled coffee on the counter. There is always spilled coffee grounds, liquid coffee, and a towel soaking in it, as proof that he attempted to clean it up, but ran out of time. We used to fight about this all the time until one day I just gave up and accepted his coffee spilling ways. It takes me a minute to wipe it up. Much less time than discussing it at length and fuming for hours, right?
Anyway, the other day there was also coffee dripping down the front of the counter making a puddle on the floor. As I grabbed a towel to clean it up I heard Tiny-Small yell, “Oh no!” I went into the other room and there she was staring at her Elmo table. It was covered in milk. She was holding an empty cup looking helpless. “Grab a towel, quick!” I yelled as I ran back to the kitchen. We cleaned up the milk and then I cleaned up the coffee spill in the kitchen. I took a deep breath. A few minutes later I heard water splashing around. I looked around the corner and I saw Tiny-Small carrying the dogs water bowl from the bathroom to the hallway splashing all the way. In an attempt to not pull out my own hair and run screaming from the house, I repeated, “She’s just trying to help. She’s just trying to help. She’s just trying to help.” Then I grabbed the mop from the closet.
At lunch time I opened the fridge and the milk jug fell out, the top popped off, and milk began pouring out onto the floor. I felt like crying over spilled milk for the second time that day. Instead I just mumbled words of revenge under my breath. I counted to a gigabyte. We decided to make a fruit smoothie for lunch. I added frozen raspberries, frozen blackberries, a banana, milk, and yogurt to the blender and pushed the “pulse” button. After the third pulse the top flew off and the fourth pulse spewed the pink and blue blender contents all over the cabinets. I am not ashamed to admit that I actually cried that time.
After cleaning that up I put the lid back on the blender, and held it on firmly as it finished grinding up what was left of our smoothie. I poured the meager smoothie remains into Tiny-Small’s cup. As she carried it the table she tripped over thin air and fell, splattering smoothie all over the wall and floor. It was in cracks and crevices. I am still finding splatterings to this day.
After that I declared it a “sippy cup with top at all times” day. I had to do something. I was on the verge of joining the circus because less chaos and cuddly lions and all of that stuff.
In the afternoon Tiny-Small decided to play with her rice box. As she stood at her little table burying toys in the rice and pouring rice from one cup to another I grabbed the broom knowing there would be rice on the floor when she was done. As I was grabbing the broom I heard a sound that can only be described as a gentle rain. As I walked back into the room there was Tiny-Small conducting a science experiment to see how much rice would actually land in a little, red cup if she poured the rice from three feet off the ground. In case you are curious, not very much.
As I sat down to make my to-do list for the day, mid afternoon I might add, Tiny-Small picked up the glass of water next to me and took a drink. Then she handed it to me, but got distracted and let go before I had a firm grasp on it. The water from the glass spilled right into my pants. It was cold. I had to change, then I had to soak water out of the couch cushion. As I was cleaning that up I heard a small voice from the bathroom say, “Oh no. I didn’t make it.” Another floor mopping and costume change later….
I decided to get some blogging done. I sat down at my desk and Tiny-Small climbed on the top of my chair to, literally, be the monkey on my back. She likes it when I lean back and squish her into the seat. It makes her laugh and laugh. So as I am typing and leaning into her I start to notice that my back is feeling wet. I reach back and it is wet. I ask, “Why am I getting wet?” Tiny-Small pulls out a dishcloth that she had dipped in my paint water. I walk over to the table to inspect my paint water like a crime scene detective. Half the water is in the container, the rest splashed around on everything. The table now has a blue tinge to it for life. Tiny-Small and I are both wet. The back of my shirt will forever have a nice blue tinge to it too. We change our clothes again. I wipe up the mess. I pretend I am janitor to the stars to pass the time.
Dinner time rolls around and as I am cooking I start to load the dishwasher. Tiny-Small helps. She’s putting silverware into the slots and mugs on the top rack. It’s awesome. Then she picks up a mug full of water and turns it over splashing dirty dishwater all over the place. We stop and clean it up. I open a can of chicken broth and as I am pouring it into a pot the dog runs past me, bumps into my legs and I splash chicken broth all over the stove. As I am cleaning that up my pot bubbles over splashing more chicken broth all over the stove.
Finally it is bath time. Tiny-Small gets into the tub and is happily playing while I sit on a stool and scroll through my Facebook feed. As I look up she starts pouring water into a cup on the edge of the tub. The cup fills up immediately and overflows onto the floor. As I am wiping up the floor she starts kicking and splashing. Water is getting everywhere. I close the shower curtain to contain the splashing and sit back down. When it is time to rinse her hair she insists on doing it herself because, as she explains, “I’m a big gurl now.” I hand her the shower head and close the curtain. She’s doing great, but then without any notice, she pulls the curtain back and happily exclaims, “I’m done!” Meanwhile the shower head is pointed right at me spraying me in the face as I blindly reach for the handle to turn the water off. Another costume change later…
Tiny-Small is finally in bed so I sneak downstairs to work on my blog. As I walk over to my desk I see a doll, wrapped in a blanket, in the middle of the floor. Something is dripping off of it. I look closer and see that in the last hours of the day the dog has decided to spill his bladder leaving me with one final spill to clean up before I call it a day and throw in the metaphorical, pee-stained towel.
This is the only explanation I have for why I seem to be cleaning all day long, but nothing is ever actually clean. It also explains why we have so much laundry. Spills and then more spills with a side of spills.