Ignore the laundry.
Let the “restaurant” remain set up in the living room.
Don’t even think about cleaning the bathrooms.
The dishes can wait.
Let the chaos be.
Don’t fall to its depths.
Be the polar opposite.
Repel from the sounds of the children’s disagreements.
Withrdraw to your room.
Find your laptop.
Open the document.
The one that’s unfinished.
That you began so many months ago.
That you’re ready to look at again.
(Now. Via email. Before you can entertain a second thought.)
The laundry pile will have grown.
The toy food will cover every inch of the living room floor.
The bathroom will be a little stinkier.
The dishes will fill the sink. And the counters, too.
The noise level will pierce your ears straight through to your brain.
But it won’t matter.
It simply won’t matter.
Because you will have finished something that you started.
You will have taken a risk.
You will have put the final touches on 1,458 words that needed to be sent out into the world.
And you will smile.
Feel your shoulders lower to where they always should be.
You will walk into the living room.
Look around at the cash register, the plates, the toy cake.
You will squeeze yourself into a chair, beside a stuffed dog and a pile of books.
And you will order a piece of that cake.
And a big glass of lemonade.
Fantasy and reality colliding.
Just as it should be.
And for their mother.