the following is a (very long, oh so bright and sunny) post i wrote last night. obviously, we've lived to see another day. i share this because this is real life, or at least real life for me. not every day (or week or month)is like this but some certainly are. i'm tired of seeing celebrities and some facebook "friends" who dote on and on about how wonderful their children are, how happy they are, etc. in the past, some of those celebrities who gushed about how wonderful their marriages are, are the same ones who are now divorced. i love my family and some moments with them are pure bliss and ecstasy. but other moments are pure agony. no one advertises their shitty days in all their full blown despair. we may joke that, "ahhh, the kids are driving me crazy!" but that's not really the same. i think there's some validity in not "airing one's dirty laundry for all the world to see", but in this age of facebook, twitter, and blogs, it's equally unfair to only advertise all the really wonderful parts of life, family, and parenthood. because sometimes that imbalance makes me feel like a totally horrible wife and mother for not feeling like my life is all sunshine and rainbows or that i'm not doing enough because my boys are way more beastly than other kids. maybe i just need to disconnect from those things so as not to scandalize myself. i'm considering it.
any of this make sense??? well,anyways, you've been warned...
i'm done. i'm not going to joke about how challenging my boys are, but then share something cute that redeems them. i'm not going to "put things in perspective" because we have food on the table and a roof over our heads. right now, at this moment, i would rather be living in a shelter with an unemployed husband. (yes that is drastic, but i'm pretty sure that's how i feel.)
tim is working all the time and i am going crazy...well...pretty much all the time. yes, there's phrases i've said in the past, trying to look at the bright side, trying to convince myself that this could work, like, "yah, he's gone all weekend but we can usually hang out with family on the weekends and then we get to have him to ourselves when he has two days off during the week." yes, this is kind of true, but two days off and then not seeing my spouse and parenting teammate the other five days is just not cutting it. because he's working in a restaurant, a regular shift runs from something like 11am-10pm. but because he's working on the way other side of town, he has to leave an hour early for work. so that means he leaves around 10am and gets home around 11pm. to say tim is not a morning person is a huge understatement. he loves the nighttime so working late is no problem for him. it just means the boys hardly get to see him and if i stay up to try and have a relationship with him, i'm exhausted the next day, because i still have to get up with the boys. long days for him and "there's really no word for me to describe my days" for me. and ben is always saying how much he misses his dad-it breaks my heart (that is, when my heart and brain aren't already numb.)
often when someone works tons of hours, it means they're making more money. nope. way more hours, and less money than his old job. yes, this is basically an investment, like going to college, but i'm so beyond wanting to hear that. so i need to work so that we don't have to use our savings, but i'm a bit short on extra physical and mental energy these days. and my job isn't exactly a clock-in, clock-out, no brainer kind of deal. i not so secretly just what to work as a cashier-a job that requires very little of my energy. but my job is good pay and allows me to work less hours for the same pay as a more menial job. because i feel like i need to be with my boys. they are my responsibility and i don't want someone else raising my kids for me. i think.
honestly, some days, a lot of days recently, i just want someone else to raise my boys. drop them off at daycare, work full time, come home, spend a few hours with them, and put them to bed. because they are SO EXHAUSTING.
when i don't work at all, like i have been for the last couple of weeks, they drive me crazy. ben is in one of his more difficult stages. (he's cyclical-i usually get a reprieve of a couple of normal-to-sweet ben weeks before another couple months of "challenging" crash over me.) right now everything i ask of him is, "i don't want to" or a very snotty "NO!" and everything i give him to eat earns a "i what something different". he is either teasing max or yelling at max to do want he wants him to do, sometimes sneakily throwing things at max, bopping him, or pushing him. he is a very constant child and rarely plays by himself, always wanting to be in the same room/place i'm in. my only real break from his constant questions, requests/demands, and pokings is tv. but i really don't want him watching a lot of tv, so he gets two shows when max goes down for his nap. ben won't nap so unless we've gone somewhere in the afternoon and he crashes in the car, he gets really tired and therefore uber cranky and irrational within a couple days. but if he does sleep in the car, he's up really late. ben has never been a good sleeper and often still comes up to our bed at night. if i have the energy to fight the melt down and feel like the meanest troll mommy in the world, i take him back to his bed. but most nights i'm just too tired. because i've had nearly four years of interrupted sleep!
ben is not a terrible kid. i know this, despite what i say. he can be very sweet, super friendly, thoughtful, generous and in my opinion, has been blessed with a very smart little brain. but goodness gracious is he demanding.
max basically seems like ben 2.0 in a lot of ways. which is wonderful in a lot of ways, but also, to be completely honest, fills me with some feelings of dread. he always wants to be with me, is super energetic, and very volatile.
so, like i said, some days i really just want them to be someone else's responsibility. but i know in my heart that mothering-teacher, moral guide, dietitian, etc is absolutely necessary. so i work part-time, and then come home and make up for the time i missed with full-time mothering and taking care of a home.
i feel totally exhausted mentally, physically, and spiritually. and that's with the help of family and friends. i pray for those that don't have the thread of family and friends to keep them from falling completely. right now i feel like i'm just stumbling, stumbling, stumbling along.
yes, i should "offer all these things up". i do use my frustrations as reminders to pray for those mothers who are struggling without support, for families with very sick children, for the souls in purgatory, for our priests, and our church. but i'm just not very good at that.
and i'm tired.
so there it is. like i said, we've lived to see another day. we're working on reorganizing some things in hopes that it helps us all, and most importantly, praying for grace, wisdom, and patience.