Hey moms: do you sometimes find yourselves feeling like Mrs. Bucket? Not the quirky, buck-toothed, Tim Burton Pixie played by an extra camped-up Helena Bonham Carter; that one never resonated with me. I'm talking about the greasy-nosed, red-straw-haired Mrs. Bucket from the 1960s, the one who slaved all day washing strangers's clothes in a hot steamy vat of something resembling cream of celery soup for probably a dollar a day. The one who wore a scratchy-looking, worn-at-the-elbows sweater and made cabbage water to feed her extended family of parents and in-laws who all shared a bed in the living room/kitchen. The one who called a loaf of bread 'a real banquet'.
THAT Mrs. Bucket. Ever feel like that?
I did today, in fact. Scooping laundry out of the washing machine and dumping it into the dryer for the seventh time since I got home from work (OH, how many times have I walked away without remembering to turn that motherfucker on, only to return the next morning to a sodden, musty pile of dank towels and school uniforms?!!)
I clutch my aching back and hum REM's "Finest Worksong" while simultaneously calling out spelling words to test the kid, and keeping one eye on the stove to make sure dinner isn't getting more burned than usual...
That woman, Mrs. Bucket, that is, seemed to me the epitome of every failure a woman could possibly face, all rolled into one overwrought, exhausted wretch of a human being.
Mrs. Bucket days are the worst. I think the only bright spot in this whole miserable scenario is that there is, luckily, a tomorrow. I can pack it in and get a good night's sleep and there will be coffee and a sunrise in my future, and clean hair and a worn pair of jeans and my favorite boots and tomorrow I get another shot at doing this all over again...
Here's to keeping Mrs. Bucket at bay.
3 hours ago