We got approximately 5 hours of sleep, interrupted, of course, with nursings, bad dreams, retrieving bottles, and "I can't sleep". Then we got up to get ready for Church.
Everyone needed showers or baths. I showered first and made it only into my underwear before I started everyone else. Caleb and Anda cooperated just fine. We had to pull the sleepy toddlers out of bed, take their diapers off, and plop them into the tub mostly asleep. Both refused to bathe and cried. Benji wouldn't even sit down, and screamed through a very fast shampoo. I couldn't even get Daniel shampooed.
Then just getting clothes on everyone, hair fixed, shoes found, diaper bag stocked is rough, especially since I couldn't let Nathanael see me or he'd want to nurse. I thought everyone else was ready to walk out the door when I realized I was still in my underwear only, and so was Dan. So we threw our clothes on and fixed our hair and ran out. Sans breakfast for anyone, but with a half dozen oranges in the diaper bag.
We were still half an hour late and missed the sacrament. Because a) Benji won't sit in the meeting and b) he thinks all those people are there as an audience for him and c) I was too tired to chase him and nurse the baby at the same time, we sat in the lobby. I used to swear I'd never do that. Now I'm just grateful I don't have to sit on those hard chairs in the back. Tim ran laps after Benji while I nursed.
When sacrament meeting was over, we collected the scattered stuff and then things got really difficult. Turns out someone offended Caleb in his class and the teachers didn't let him come find me--2 weeks ago--so he refused to go to primary. Daniel still prefers nursery, so he cried and refused to go to primary. Benji begged to go to nursery, though, so we split up. I took everyone but Benji to primary, and Tim went to nursery with Benji, who still won't go himself.
Anda went right to her class and sat down.
Caleb and Daniel hung on me in the back, protesting, while I juggled the baby. Eventually, the protesting boys got too loud, so we went in Daniel's classroom and set up the chairs and table for them. Then we heard a movie go on (Jesus' baptism, from the Bible), so they consented to go back and sit in the back.
I was just relaxing when I turned and looked back and found Tim holding a sobbing Benji. Apparently my decision to test and see if Benji would stay in nursery by himself 3 weeks ago was a BIG BIG mistake--now he is terrified of it and won't go at all!
So then we had four boys, all out of their classes. So I told Tim if he would take th baby, I'd be fine with the three in primary. We settled a protesting Caleb in the back row and said, "Don't go to your class, but stay here." Then took Dan and Benji to Dan's class, where they were having cookies, so they wanted to stay. Until Tim left. then Benji absolutely fell apart. So Tim sat with Dan in his class and I tried to take
Benji and baby to nursery, and Benji climbed the stairs into a classroom above the gym. I couldn't follow him, so I waited until the teacher noticed him and sent someone carrying him down. I took him into the nursery and he screamed bloody murder, so we left again. Back to Dan's class, and Tim took the baby.
A few minutes later he was back. The baby had exploded all over. First it was the diaper out the back--worst leak Tim said he's seen in all 5 kids! Then, while the baby was lying on his tummy on the counter in the bathroom (happily, even though that sounds horrid) and Tim was trying to get cascaded baby poop off his clothing, the baby started screaming. Tim turned to look and found Nathanael had vomited all over and was wiping his face in it! AND I had left the diaper bag in the hall by the nursery and forgot to tell Tim that, so we had a little bit of a circus getting the necessary supplies to clean up.
By then I decided I'd better check on Caleb, and I found him--crouching under a folding chair on the back row in Primary.
That problem addressed (he grudgingly got back on his seat and agreed to draw pictures), I found Dan and Benji refused to go back to class. So we found Tim and a naked-but-for-the-diaper Baby in an empty classroom, where we gave up. We let the boys draw with chalk on the blackboard while we tried to catch our breath until a class came in and kicked us out. (The teacher had written 'I will say I'm sorry' on the blackboard, so we were rather surprised when a group of 18-24 month olds walked in. Most of them are not only pre-literate, they're pre-verbal, too!)
We gathered our stuff and went to another room, fetched some chalk, changed another poopy diaper (Dan this time), and resumed our staring at each other, waiting for it to get past the awful point to the funny point. Daniel happily drew a huge picture of a skeleton firefighter who had a massive pumpkin in his firetruck and a hat that "always blows off". Benji eventually resumed running laps in the hall, with Tim at his heels, while I nursed again. And just as we were ready to gather our stuff and get the big kids, Caleb ran by in the hall. Primary was over.
There was a great deal of confusion as we tried to sort out who was coming with mommy to get Anda and who was going with Daddy right to the car. Somehow we managed to find everyone, get out of a building that has only single-wide doors as exits (no big quadruple doors into a foyer in that building!), and get to the car with no fatalities, although we did have to wait for a car to move so we could retrieve Anda's three pine cones that Benji had thrown under another car.
Oh, and did I mention Tim had already been to church once before this (6 hours in one day!) and, to get to church on time for the earlier meeting, he hadn't gone to bed the night before at all.
So, home again, he, Nathanael,and Benji all collapsed into bed. I asked Caleb how church was for him, and he said, "Great! I drew a picture of Hogwarts and planned five new levels for the computer game I'm making!"
Like I said, if I didn't know for sure that this was a true church, directed by God, I think I'd give up!
As it is, I took a deep breath and am trying to figure how we can get there on time next week, even if we only get 5 hours of sleep again. At least I ought to get the sacrament out of all this!