Monthly Archives: March 2014

The Intruder

I often like to imagine that our household doesn’t fit into the typical “couple with young kids” stereotype. I puff out my chest and can rattle off a list of things like how interesting our kids are, how artsy they’ve become, that one can beat adults at a game of chess and the other has a sense of style like…well…Betsey Johnson maybe? I like to separate my kids from the herd in saying that they’re polite and well behaved and are burning through books and not greedy and whiny and obsessed with video games and Disney princesses. The truth is that they’re typical and that we do fit into the stereotypes. I live off of coffee, own a lot of yoga pants, and know the theme songs to way too many cartoons. We buy McDonald’s, we YouTube pop songs to dance around to, we let them play video games and they whine and cry and demand. We even have ground up Cheerios in our living room rug! I suppose part of it is that I don’t like falling into what everyone thinks living with young kids is like. It’s a picture that’s painted with equal parts repulsion and curiosity. Why would people ever have kids? *blech*

They interfere with your body, your bank account, your lifestyle and your sleep.

Ah, your sleep. Your precious sleep. Since having kids I find that I don’t sleep well. I’m either stressed, physically sore from stress, having bizarre dreams about them growing extra limbs and failing math tests or sleeping with one ear open in case there are midnight tummy aches and teething. A good deep sleep is now a precarious thing.

Last night I must have been having a dip into the elusive REM cycle when some subconscious alarm went off. I opened my eyes a crack and saw a dark shadowy figure standing right by my head. Natrually, because I was completely freaked out of my mind thinking I was about to die, I started yelling loudly which alerted my soundly sleeping husband to the present danger. Being a police officer, his adrenalin and hyper-vigilance went into overdrive with his need to subdue the threat to my person. He lunged his upper body over me and grabbed the shadowy figure, pulling them onto the bed. As he was about to unleash his fists of fury onto the burglar we realized it was Amelia. She’d had a nightmare and came upstairs for some comfort. Poor child. Afterwards she told me that she had been quietly saying “mommy” trying to wake me up when I started screaming and James attacked her.

Needless to say, Amelia managed to get to sleep after that. James and I tossed and turned, trying to find space to get comfortable without knees and elbows and stuffed animals. It didn’t happen.

Our lives will calm down eventually, when the kids are older and independent. For now, we fit most of the stereotypes…except for the mini-van. We’re fighting that one until the bitter end.

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Carry On

There are days and weeks and months that feel like no matter where you look everything is messy, no matter what direction you face things feel hard. Every part of life is turned over and upside down and frustrating. There isn’t one thing that is spared.

I’d like to say I’m going through one of those weeks but if I’m totally honest, it’s been dragging on for months (possibly years). I’m exhausted and weary. I want to kick and scream and blow things up but I just keep on trucking. What else can you do?

I’m sure that part of it is having young kids, part of it is being a single income family and part of it is…a million other things, but the straw that’s breaking the camel’s back is this stupid kitchen drain. Two and a half weeks without my sink and dishwasher draining properly (read: at all). I had been trying very hard (and succeeding) to get into good habits with my housework and my food prep but this has totally and completely derailed me. All gumption to do anything even remotely productive has drifted away and I’m left to pout in pity-party land.

Sigh. I went a long time without a dishwasher. I can do this.

Breathe. Chin-up. Carry on.

 

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Taking Some Time

The world keeps turning outside of social media. Who knew? Life carries on.

I felt the pull to repeat the same Lenten fasting as last year and have removed myself from all of those time-sucking websites and have limited computer time to after the kids are in bed. I got a lot out of it last time around and was looking forward to stepping away from the hustle and bustle of the news feeds and game requests and idyllic envy-inducing instagrams. Truth be told, I’d love to walk away from all of it for good but, like so many others I’ve talked to, I just can’t seem to make that leap.

However, this has proven to be a good starter week for me since our sink and dishwasher aren’t draining at all. My attention has been on washing a million dishes in plastic bins and since we are a hungry family of five, we go through a lot of dishes. It’s a good thing I have a six year old who loves to be a helper.

Along with dish duty, I’ve been continuing to read some books that I had previously posted about. These are pulling at my heart strings and awakening my long-subdued homesteading/hobby farming desires. We aren’t buying land any time soon but I’m seeing ways in which I can get more out of our urban life. The way in which I’ve viewed myself as “only” a stay-at-home-mom is slowly changing as I try hard to pull away from the damaging priorities I’ve bought into for so long…but that’s a whole other blog that’s bubbling up to the surface.

It’s refreshing to retreat for awhile and allow yourself some space to breath and to evaluate your trajectory.

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