As a parent, I have grown accustomed to making sacrifices for my children. Sacrifices such as giving up my dreams of being a professional five-pin bowler by day and a tap dancing lounge act by night.

Some sacrifices have to be made whether I like it or not. Waking up in the wee hours of the morning to rouse my offspring out of their beauty sleep to usher them off to school so they may receive an education (and so the office of Children Services doesn't come knocking on my door and threaten to throw my sorry, sleepy ass into the slammer for depriving my children of an academic future) is one such sacrifice.

Oh, the things I do for my children.

Yet, I make this early morning sacrifice for my kids out of love, every day. Albeit, grudgingly, but I still I do it. Beats home schooling the little rug rats.

(Not that I have anything against home schooling. Really, I admire those with the patience and wisdom to attempt such a feat. And I'm not just saying that because my best friend's parents run a large homeschooling business, and I'll be having dinner with them tomorrow night. Ahem.)

It's just I hate getting up before even the damn birds do. I'm not a morning lover. My eyes tend to be glued shut with gook, my face is covered with dried spit and my sparkly disposition is hiding somewhere in the rat's nest I call my hair. It takes me a while to get all pistons firing properly.

Meanwhile, my children circle around me with pointy spears and poke at my tired body while chanting some ancient voodoo spell while I wait for my coffee to brew.

Good times.

I have managed to find a way to make the morning more manageable as my children fight over who gets to the last fruit cup in their lunch, who has to wipe the spilled milk off the counter, who was the one who left the bathroom light on. I tune them out as they roll around on the floor, yanking at each other's hair and ears, wrestling for supreme victory, and I drink my freshly ground java while surfing the internets.

It keeps me sane. It also keeps me from having to separate the two of them and risk having my arm chewed off.

This routine has served us well for the better part of two years. As I expected it to do yesterday morning. Except when I sat down at my computer with my heavenly cup of joe, there was no internet. The little lights on my over-priced satellite gadget thingy were dark, silently mocking me. No internet.

I wiggled the connection. I unplugged the thingamabob and plugged it back in. I rebooted the computer. I cussed. I cried. I got on my knees and prayed for mercy. But alas, nothing. No internet. Just a polite note from my computer telling me the internet God has abandoned me and perhaps I should get off my ass and actually parent my children that the morning.

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My children stopped tormenting one another long enough to wander over and see why I was smacking the computer.

"Maybe you should call the satellite company, Mom," Frac offered helpfully. Good idea. I knew I had kids for a reason.

So after waving good bye to my children and ignoring their protests that I was pushing sending them outside fifteen minutes too early (I figured they needed some fresh air before the bus came) I dug out the emergency 1-800 number (read: I ripped apart my filing cabinet until I found the teeny tiny piece of paper that contained the number to regain my sanity) and placed the call.

They were very sympathetic to my plight once they learned I was officially addicted to my internet and was in the first stages of withdrawal. But there was a problem with a thingamajig and I'd have to hold onto my panties tightly until it was fixed.

"Well, how long will that take? I mean, I'm in real danger of losing my mind out here," I begged.

The satellite company's response? Take a chill pill and we'll call you when the problem is rectified.

Gee, thanks. I fork out large amounts of cash every month for this? I get the same advice from my therapist. Dammit.

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It was a painfully long day. I actually had to occupy my time doing something other than checking my email a dozen times a day and reading through my bloglines. Suddenly I noticed just how dusty my house was, how the laundry wasn't magically putting itself away and how my refrigerator contained more penicillin than the local pharmacy.

I moped.

I played solitaire.

I cleaned out my closet.

I phoned the internet company so many damn times they started pretending I had got the wrong number every time they saw my number.

It became increasingly clear I had a problem as I sat down at my computer and started talking to my keyboard about how I missed spending time stroking it's keys.

The kids came home from school and found me huddled in the corner, rocking my laptop and speaking gibberish.

How I missed thee, Internets.

Finally, at seven pm, a full twelve hours since I was first booted out of cyberspace, I stopped mourning and placed my final call to the satellite company.

"Listen here, punk, I pay good coin to be able to surf internet porn and share the misery of parenting with other parents and you are interfering with my addiction process. Enough of this crap, you need to fix this problem and fix it now. I don't care if you need to call in Harry Potter or Buzz Aldrin, just do it. Or I will personally fly out to your headquarters in India or Timbuktu or where ever and ensure the problem gets fixed. Trust me, sonny boy, you don't want some jacked up, angry mother who is jonesing for her internet fix breathing down your neck."

Oh, ya. That'll inspire him. Threats from a junkie mom whose kids are screaming like out of control banshees in the background as they fight over taking turns playing video games.

My threats must have worked. That or the fact I rebooted the system the proper way, not just shaking the box and yelling "A pox on your head!"

Let me just say, having the door unlocked and thrown open to allow me to enter the sweet heavens of cyberspace was almost as good as uncorking a great bottle of wine seeing my husband walk through the front door after weeks of being absent.

Okay, who am I kidding, it was better.

Besides the high from finally being able to peer into my online world and check my email, I was also pleasantly surprised to discover I made the final round for Best Canadian Blog in the 2008 Weblog Awards. Otherwise known as the Bloggies. Thanks y'all. My ego is duly stroked. So go vote for me, or don't, but head on over and check out the other nominees. There are some great blogs up for awards.

Win or lose, this will give me an opportunity to pretend I'm Cate Blanchett while I'm in the bathroom, practicing my acceptance speech and my "Damn, I lost and the camera is on me and I'm going to have to pretend that I'm not crushed and give one of those stupid 'it was just an honour to be nominated' speeches that everyone knows is fake and dear God, I wonder how much my therapist is going to charge me for whining about losing to some kid in freaking Saskatchewan and I'll never be able to show my face in public again."

I wonder if I'll still fit in my prom dress.