This is my favorite season of the year. Except I hate anything pumpkin-flavored unless it’s in a flaky crust with a can of Reddi-Whip on top. Otherwise, fall is golden.
Unfortunately, there’s also an aspect of the season which I despise: The Changing of the Wardrobe.
In old homes like mine, the closets are as big as lunchboxes and it’s impossible to fit two seasons of clothing in there.
You can’t even fit two kids.
I know, I’ve tried.
They deserved it.
So, in order to conduct an efficient Changing of the Wardrobe, I employ a complicated procedure known as The Rubbermaid Brigade.
I delay this endeavor until the last milli-second of the season; I know it’s time when I can no longer wear my husband’s boxer shorts to Dunkin Donuts. That’s my yardstick by which I measure necessity.
My kids love this seasonal event. They use my forgetful laziness to their advantage.
They insist: “We’re going to need new ski pants, ski jackets, hats and like, six new Hollister hoodies for winter! It’s so cold outside. Brrrrr…”
They know I have no earthly idea what I shoved up in that attic abyss last year and they take full advantage of my propensity for replacement vs. recall.
Since they just asked for new Timberland boots that cost as much as a car payment, I’m now forced to swim to Rubbermaid Island without a lifejacket and search for last year’s models.
These Rubbermaids are heavier than ever before and I’m certain there are sweaters in there still attached to the sheep. I smell sheep, anyway. As I approached the closet which house the overflowing blue tubs, I heard buzzing. Sure enough, I spied a family of bees, hunkering down for winter in my smelly alcove, glaring at my intrusion.
Obviously they smelled the sheep, too.
Perhaps this was a job for Nancy. But Nancy won’t help because apparently the golf course doesn’t require a change of wardrobe — no parka, no mittens, just fun. He says it doesn’t rain there, either. Idiot.
So onward and upward I trek, sprayed with insect repellent that smells like WD-40, hauling up the summer crap and schlepping down the fall crap. Sweating and wheezing, I wondered, who needs Pilates and running on the dike (while losing my car key) when I just teetered up and down stairs 482 times today?! (I hear my Pilates instructor whispering, “Oh …you do Maria. You do.”).
After three hours, I felt like the Queen Bee in the hive that took over my attic, who finds herself living in a colony with tiny closets and no worker bees. She trudges up and down that hive all day, doing her chores and making sure all the little baby bees have their coats and hats for fall.
This is what we Queen Bees do. We’re an assembly line of one, getting S&*% done while the King Bee sits on his stinger and watches the Notre Dame game on the large screen honeycomb with his drunk, drone homies.
There’s a reason there’s always a plethora of honey.
There’s a reason my kids aren’t wearing flip flops to school this week.
It’s the Queen Bee who’s not only responsible for overseeing hive production, but who’s always in charge of The Changing of the Yellow Jackets.
In my hive, we just call that motherhood.
Maria Jiunta Heck of West Pittston is a mother of three, a librarian and a business owner who lives to dissect the minutiae of life.