I'm tired. What I would like to do after work is put my feet up, eat cake or cookie dough, and read some Terry Pratchett that I got for my birthday. Someone bringing me slippers and a cocktail would be lovely, too.
What I do, however, is come home, run around the yard for an hour being a Spice Girl or a Sailor Scout or Shaggy (my Shaggy voice is pretty good, zoinks!), fighting evil with swim noodles and breaks for boogie boarding in Hawaii (because superheroes need surfing vacations too), fix a mediocre supper of some kind of pasta (I am still just learning to cook [I know], if The Spouse is working, or serve as chef's assistant if he isn't. Eat, put away the leftovers, dole out desserts and allergy meds to the Offspring, and then get them into their jammies, watch them brush their teeth and try not to crack up about something, apply fluoride, get them into bed (all three of us in Woof Woof Wolfie's bunk for books and it's crowded, all elbows and knees), read to them for an hour from two of the endless series of Henry and Mudge books (now with spin off series of Annie and Snowball) or the other new Rylant series, The High-Rise Private Eyes and either The Miserable Mill or Matilda or Thodosia and The Serpents of Chaos (the Possum's choices these days), after which I will put out the light and lie still, hissing like a goose occasionally when someone who shall remain nameless will not be still in that top bunk and is making an astounding amount of racket, contorting her body into impossible shapes trying to find a comfortable position and get the pillows just right. Finally, when I have just started to doze off myself, but have been jerked awake by an untimely mattress squeak, I will realize that Woof Woof Wolfie is out cold and I may find my shoes and creep from the room, after almost-but-not-quite forgetting to pass out the good-night kisses, and then I can retire to the screen porch for ten minutes of peace and a smoke.
At which point I will realize that while still tired, I am no longer sleepy, and that there is a load of laundry that's been moldering in the washing machine for 24 hours, which desperately needs a rinse, and when I go to put it in the drier, I'll discover a load that's been wrinkling in there for 24 hours, and by the time I get that folded and weighted down (in order to replace the random creases with proper ones), I'll be too exhausted to read a word, but too wired to go to sleep without pharmacological assistance.
And somewhere in there I manage to fit in gathering whatever permission slips and checks are necessary for second grade tomorrow, bringing in the mail and Mom's newspaper, chatting with my beloved Spouse about the news of the day and upcoming special scheduling events and the weather (he's very knowledgeable about the weather, and just think how much more fun it will be when he gets his birthday weather station up! we'll be rolling in data and the exact time of sunset!) and movies we've seen recently (mostly animated and G rated) or twenty years ago when we both worked separately in theaters. And I'll have a conversation with Mom about her garden, and extended family news, and what a wonderful husband I'm lucky to have. And I'll feed the cats and pet them.
This is my life and it is exhausting and I love it. I'm insanely lucky to have all this.