There is nothing I had to do in the corporate world that comes close to being as hard as orchestrating bedtime solo with twins. Well, except this one time, at 4:59 pm on a Friday, I was charged with finding an illustrator to create a picture of Shakespeare that had to look EXACTLY like some other illustrations of historic figures to be completed by Monday morning and every ad agency employee was already two martinis in at some trendy happy hour spot and I had to have an emergency root canal on Saturday (still without having procured an illustrator) and then by the grace of God my roommate at the time worked for Leo Burnett and was able to hook me up with someone and then on Monday when I handed in this illustration (pleased as punch with myself by the way) I was asked if I was sure the illustration was of Shakespeare and not Galileo and my answer was "yes I am very sure" when in fact I had no idea. But BESIDES THAT, I find doing bedtime alone with twins the hardest thing I've ever had to do. Which is why it's a good thing my husband only travels every so often for work.
First you need to give them a bath, and usually I have to lure them into said bath. "Dora wants to play with you!" I've been sing-songing like a freak since I bought some bath toys where you can stick Dora and Boots, her globe-trotting monkey friend, on the wall. So once I get one girl into the tub the other may run away (naked and often peeing on the family room rug) but I can't leave one in the bath to go chase the urinating one down because everyone knows you can't leave a toddler alone in the bath for even one second. So I call from the bathroom entry trying to entice the other one back from whatever the hell she is now doing (I don't know because, as mentioned, I can't leave the bathroom). Finally, with two children bathed I need to hoist them both out while simultaneously trying to dry them so they don't go speeding off and crack their heads open because they are still wet and can slip on the tiled floor.
Next: PJ time. They currently insist on choosing which pj to wear to bed, which inevitably turns into them standing there looking at jammies for what seems like hours as if they were choosing a dress for the senior prom and then getting pissed once the jammies are on with one wanting whatever footie-thing the other one is wearing.
So then milk (still from a bottle at 20 months old mind you), bedtime snack and a Dora. They now want SPECIFIC episodes, often conflicting with one yelling "Beach Dowa!" and the other demanding "Choo choo Dowa!" and I try to reason with them ("choo choo tomorrow, okay? Yay!"), sounding like a TV-addict enabling psycho.
We finally get back downstairs and have a ridiculously long routine that involves reading, singing, dancing and rubbing noses goodnight with a ceramic pig. Now, they've figured out if they yell, "Mama! Peeezzz!" I will come back in because before if they whined it was just a generic "I don't want to go to bed" whine but now it's a heart-wrenching plea addressed specifically to me and then they pretend to be deathly thirsty and proceed to drink more water than a camel can hold in its humps. So now, it's way past their bedtime and I have a lot of reality tv to watch and I'm too exhausted and I have to go to bed.
So I'm wondering if I can invite the man who instructed me to commandeer a quick-turnaround illustration of Shakespeare on my weekend off while suffering from a torturing toothache to come and put my kids to bed tonight since my husband is out of town and we can call it even.
PS -- In case you're curious, Shakespeare is on the left and wrote poetry and such. Galileo is on the right and is considered the "father of modern astronomy" which I think means he figured out which signs in the Zodiac are most compatible. Had he effectively warned that Pisces should never mix with Leo he could have saved me several thousand dollars and the hassle of filing a restraining order.