After three children, volumes of parenting books, and two mother in laws I could probably write my own book on raising children. Instead, I can make it pretty simple. Laugh.
In our tiny, crazy family of five, things are not always ideal. The kids bicker and fight. There are days the hubby and I barely talk even though we both work at home. We have bills and payments just like every other middle American family. There are days that it is actually really, really hard to keep it together. Even on those days, we laugh.
I am so proud of my children. I really do have the best kids anyone could want. Granted, there are some days I like them a bit more than others. But, all in all, they are pretty awesome.
Even having the best kids in the universe, it does not make this whole mom thing any easier. There are so many times I question everything I am doing, and to what extent I am screwing them up. I try so hard to do everything right, but it is just so damn hard.
Each day I am so thankful that my children and husband have incredibly low standards. I really believe this is the only reason I am still around. I truly think that the reason my kids insist I am the best mom in this world is because they have nothing to really compare it to. If they ever watched The Brady Bunch, I would be screwed.
I see these other moms, with their homemade, pre-digested toddler snacks and biodegradable yoga pants. I feel like a failure. My kids drop an Oreo on the floor, I brush it off and hand it back to them so I don't have to listen to the whining because it is the last one. Why is it so easy for other parents? Why can they do it all and I am barely holding it together?
I can't be the only one. I know I can't. Most moms have to feel the same way I do. Holy shit, can't I just get two minutes for myself.
Why is it so hard to find any time at all where little voices aren't yelling "mommy" or the husband isn't asking where something is. In truth, I believe I deal with it pretty well. I take it all in stride, and go with it...most of the time. But then, there are those moments. The ones where I am making the mental list of everything that I still have left to do that day, dinner is burning, someone is tattling on another, and the husband feels the need to have some in depth discussion about something right at that very moment. I feel like my brain is going to bleed and all I want is quiet.
Every once in a while something clicks when you meet someone, and that something will alter the rest of your life...forever.
So, the husband and I met way back in high school. He was adorable and had dimples. I was incredibly shy and backward. He and I were friends, but he was actually dating one of my best friends. After they broke up, I took him to the prom because I felt sorry for him. Since I am the one penning this, I can put whatever spin on it I choose. Actually, we both decided to go together because it seemed like a lot of effort to find real dates. I was incredibly excited because I had the world's biggest crush on him. He just seemed ambivalent. We went to the prom, and I swear I am the only girl to have never gotten kissed on prom night. To this day, I still give the husband a hard time about it.
I remember a time when I lived alone, and I took it for granted. I was young and so oblivious to how fortunate I was. I could walk around naked and no one complained. There was no one to barge into the bathroom when I was peeing. I could sleep until noon and it didn't matter. I wasn't responsible for anyone but me. I kind of have roommates now, and they are awful. Times have changed.
In any relationship there are times that you find yourself in a lull, right? Times where kids, work, friends, everything else seems to come before each other. I know it happens, it has happened to us. I hate that it has, but instead of letting it go on we changed it.
Our general rule of thumb is: if no one is going to die because we don't do it, then it doesn't HAVE to get done. Because of this rule, we find much more "us" time and much more "family" time. This adds much more balance to our family. We also realize that in order for our kiddos to be happy, the husband and I need to be happy. Our relationship needs to be healthy and needs to be a priority.
There are many days I feel like I am being pulled in fifty different directions. I feel like I am completely falling apart in multiple facets of my life. I work harder at one thing, yet three others slip. I feel like I am doing a shitty job. I lay in bed at night feeling like a failure. I know that I am not alone in this feeling, because there are billions of other mommies in the world. It is our nature to feel like we are not good enough, even when we are perfectly adequate.
Middle child has therapy at our home twice a week. Now that it is summer, this is draining. It usually happens in early evening. This means an entire day of entertaining kids, cleaning house, mediating fights, spending time with the husband, dealing with an angst filled teen, and attempting to rationalize with middle and youngest.
The husband travels, sometimes more than others. In the summer, we try to go with him but it isn't always possible. Today is one of those times.
I woke up at four this morning to watch him leave for the airport. It wasn't on the best of terms. We weren't really fighting, things were just off between us. I suppose it is because life has been so incredibly hectic lately. It has been difficult to find our time. I tend to be selfish in that respect, I see our time as a priority. When we go too long without it, I take personal offense. I'm not talking sex or anything like that. Just he and I being us. It has been really hard to find time to be us lately. Time where we don't discuss schedules, kids, work or the house. When we goof off and have fun.