Over the years, absentmindedness and I have become quite acquainted. You know the famed Hutch advert with the adorable pug? Yes, something like that. Where ever I go, she follows. I find it almost impossible to doge her off. Several times I’ve left the keys to the cupboard dangling in the key hole, walked off to a meeting without my phone, backed my car to hear a light ‘thud’ of my sunglasses or tote (yes the one I left on the roof of the car while I squeezed a zillion things in) hit the ground. I’ve heard these things happening to moms and have come to believe of this to be, just like my stretch marks and extra kilos, a (unasked for) gift of motherhood. Other than blaming it on hormones, I could also most conveniently attribute it to an increasingly growing number of things to remember and the immense clutter of things in my head.
Enough being said about the absentmindedness, I must now proceed to mentioning another charming disposition of mine. The husband calls it obsessive, but then again, it’s a matter of perspective. I’d say I am by nature programmed to de-clutter. I belong to the not-so-messy side of the population and am happier with myself when things around are neat and tidy. So while my head is crowded, I am continuously trying to space out the house. In spite of a 5 year old with seemingly endless reserves of energy (he says the invisible rocket in is behind keeps him on the move) and a 1 year baby crawling around the house, I have done a fairly good job. Some of the systems that my house works on have miraculously seemed to remain intact. Sometimes nagging, sometimes nasty, sometimes nice; I have managed so far.
On this particular evening, the house had been prepared to greet guests for dinner. The table was organized. The fragrance of lemon grass (I am particularly partial towards diffusers) engulfed the house. In the kitchen a faint trail of steam escaped from the biryani that was left to slow cook. The phirni was set. I rested by back against the soft sofa and surveyed things with a glow of pleasure. I was excited. I said a silent prayer “God, please have the kids behave.”
It was almost time. Ding dong. I opened the door. In stormed my son. Sweaty, muddy and hungry; the evening in the park had taken its toll. On his tail was the nanny. The baby in her arms looked flushed and hot. In tandem followed my guests and the husband. With a silent ‘God I hope you have a plan’ I greeted my guests, excused myself and got busy with the kids.
In a matter of seconds I was caught in a storm. Both the kids clung to my legs. Their cries gave way to wails the sound of which pitched with every mili-second that they spent waiting for their food. The guests in their earnest attempt to help, added to the mayhem. Tension oozed in the house. My stress levels were high…extremely high. I was a bull that just needed to see red. And red I saw. Literally. There, right in the middle of the beautifully arranged dining table, lay an envelope with a red logo. A ‘what the f#@& is this?’ struck like a bolt of lightning through my mind and shattered whatever calm was left in my being. At this point the wound up ‘clean freak’ and ‘absent minded professor’ in me climaxed! I picked up the envelope and ripped it apart.
You see where this is going don’t you?
“What the hell are you doing!!!” boomed my husband. His livid voice drowned the wailing of the kids. What followed was 10 seconds of dead silence. “That was a bank cheque!” he bellowed on the 11th ! The look in his eyes made me cringe. Pain and disbelief radiated through his body. The children now cried louder and our guests sat there, frozen awkward. My face turned red. My stomach did a million somersaults! You remember earlier I mentioned ‘excited’? Ha! This night gave excitement a whole new meaning.
I stood there, paralyzed.
Thank God for the Capricorn in my man. With simple and uncomplicated leanings in life, he preferred reality. With a few gulps of air, he took in the moment, and sucked in whatever it was that he was feeling. He assessed the situation and realized that there were things much more paramount to be salvaged at that moment as opposed to those which had been lost. Donning a calm demeanor he took the evening forward. Shortly the kids were tucked into bed, the guests were handed their drinks and I was told, our marriage was still on.
Just as quickly as it had struck, the storm had passed.
I learnt, when you feel that the air around you is closing in, take a deep breath.
P.S. Does the absent-minded-Professor syndrome strike you often? Read these 7 Tips To Fix Absentmindedness.
Food For Mommy’s Thought: In the midst of movement and chaos, keep stillness inside you. – Deepak Chopra