A Dad’s Crazy Four Hours

Multitasking dad

Picture courtesy: www.theemotionmachine.com

I experienced one of the craziest four hours of my life on February 28th, 2014!

The time was 8:09 AM. I saw my chic and primly dressed wife, Njeb to the door – she was on her way to a four- or five-hour meeting. After she stepped out, I closed the door to witness, not as a spectator but as an actor, a frenzy of activities that put my ability, or rather, inability to multi-task to shame.

I stepped into the living room to resume the work I was doing on my laptop before I stopped to see Njeb out. The deadline is today! But Shannom is still in my arms, lying comfortably with his head on my shoulders, enjoying my cooing, and refusing to sleep. So here I am, my left arm getting numb from balancing and holding my 8.5kg son, and my right labouring over the laptop’s keyboard.

As if the situation is not bad enough, the electricity was interrupted! Thirty minutes later Shannom slept off. With numb & aching hands I placed him in his cot and prayed desperately that this sleep will not be the snooze he is typical of.  Furiously, I continued my Accounting work on the computer. Even with my two hands available to work with, only little progress was made – the battery ran out. The option of using the alternative power of a generator was out since the fuel was exhausted the previous night.

As the reality of an unmet deadline was dawning, my mind torturously dredged up another deadline: finish reading Francine Rivers’ As Sure As the Dawn. As part of my personal development plan (PDP), I read two books per month. The goal was met in January, but in February it seemed failure wanted a tie with my previous success.

The mental torture increased as I remembered I made a promise to Njeb to help cream margarine and sugar in preparation for a cake meant for a prayer meeting that will hold in our home later in the evening. I got up to go start the creaming, then I noticed my untouched breakfast on a stool. So with a plastic bowl balanced in the crook of my left arm and my right mixing the sugar-margarine content with a turnstick, using anticlockwise circular motion, I managed to eat. With the cold breakfast out of the way, I picked up Francine’s book, opened to where the page marker is, I held down both sides of the book with milk and sugar containers and resumed creaming and reading.

It’s 10:47 AM. The creaming is done. I continued reading until 11 AM. Reluctantly, I stopped to start making lunch. As I stepped away from the cooker after placing a pot of water on fire, I froze in midstride. What was that sound? It sounded like a baby’s cry. I hope not I prayed. Maybe it’s the baby from the other house. Then I heard it again. That is unmistakably Shannom’s wail. Muttering under my breath, I picked him from his cot. After 5 minutes I had him squealing in delight by throwing him in the air. Baby’s having fun while daddy’s arm muscles are worn.

My lady walked in at 12;15 PM. She relieved me of Shannom while I focused on lunch.

At the end of that day, my Accounting work deadline was unmet, we had enjoyed a tasty lunch, the cake was ready, the prayer meeting held (we had a quality time!), I finished the book, and my arms no longer hurts.

Whew! What a day of multitasking!

What’s your take on multitasking?

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