Chaos, with reference to chaos theory, refers to an apparent lack of order in a system that nevertheless obeys particular laws or rules; this understanding of chaos is synonymous with dynamical instability, a condition discovered by the physicist Henri Poincare in the early 20th century that refers to an inherent lack of predictability in some physical systems. The two main components of chaos theory are the ideas that systems - no matter how complex they may be - rely upon an underlying order, and that very simple or small systems and events can cause very complex behaviors or events.
Then there is MY version of chaos theory: that within a maximum of 1/2 hour before a scheduled appointment, all hell will break loose within the household, with all 3 kids bursting into tears and requiring my individual and immediate attention. Case in point, yesterday.
I had a hair appointment scheduled for 5:15 pm, which meant that by 5:00, I had to have the baby fed, and all three boys dressed and ready to go into the car when Mark came home from work. So, at 4:30, I settled down to feed the baby and told the boys to put their socks on, as we were leaving soon for a car ride. So, of course, Keegs takes that to mean that we are leaving immediately, and runs to the front door to get his shoes and coat. Bun runs after him to try to block him from leaving the house, and accidently slams poor Keegs' fingers in the front door. As soon as the screaming starts, I have to put down Tyger, who has only just started to feed. So he starts bellowing with righteous rage, Bun is sobbing with sympathy and guilt, and Keegs is shrieking, "My bingers! My bingers!" at the top of his lungs. Okay, first things first. I check the "bingers" in question to determine the extent of damage. They are flattened with black bruising lines across them, but he is able to bend them, so I don't think that they are broken. I go to get the ice pack. Meanwhile, Bun says that he can't stop his tears and has to go to bed until they stop, because he is the "worst brother EVER!" I get the ice pack on Keegs, and assure Bun that it was an accident, and that he is a GREAT brother, and that he was only trying to save Keegs from running out into the street. Whew! Nose blowing all around, as well as major tear blotting. Tyger, in the meantime, is hysterical to the point of choking, so I run to get him, which starts the other two crying yet again.
So, at this point, it is 4:55, and I have yet to even feed the baby, let alone get everyone dressed. Then my husband arrives, calling cheerfully, "Is everyone ready to go?" Oh yes, I have forgotten to mention that over the previous 24 hours, I have developed laryngitis, so attempting to tell him what is going on is futile. Instead, I settle to feed Ty, and just resign myself to being late as usual.
Yeah, so that's the REAL version of chaos theory, according to a stressed-out mom of three.