It’s incredible how much mayhem, mess, noise, stress and frustration 2 fun-sized people can cause. Exacerbated by 3.5 years of poor sleep which seems to have destroyed a lot of my brain. What is it with little kids not sleeping? No one told me about that. Or that birthing little human beings was the easy part.
With 2 little boys so close in age, I go through some crazy days and (frequent) moments of desperation and doubt. Days when chocolate bribes are the only way to get them through the day without losing my shit. Days when they push every button and my patience runs out and my voice rises. Days when I want to walk out the door or scream FUUUCK (but instead soldier on while cursing silently in my mind as I feel my blood pressure rise). Days when the only way I hold on to some semblance of sanity at the end of a hard day is by adopting the attitude “Everyone fed, no one dead”. It won’t kill them if they had fish fingers and chips 2 days this week. Like last week.
“I’m not cut out for this. Am I doing this right? Am I good enough? Am I enough? Why did I have 2 so close together?”
As time is passing, I’m learning to chill out more and not be so hard on myself. I’m not letting it bother me so much when the house looks like an exploded Toys R Us store. It’s fine if it takes me 6+ months to get around to just painting a room. It’s not the end of the world if I’m too exhausted to tidy/style a room and photograph it just to spend an evening writing a blog post. (I’m feeling brain-dead by then anyway so I’d really rather just chill out in front of the TV for an hour and have an early night, because it’s very likely I’ll be woken up every couple of hours.) I giggle when I see articles about maintaining a beautiful home with little kids (because I know stains have been photoshopped out and on the other side of the camera is a brightly coloured mess of kid stuff, and fuck you for pretending otherwise).
Perhaps it’ll get easier. I’m holding on to that thought. They’ll be in school before long. Then I’ll have an entire 6 hours a day to myself (that sounds crazy right now when I struggle to even find time to make a cup of tea and drink it before it goes cold).
I tell myself I must be doing something right. I know these little monkeys love me, because they hang off me when I’m trying to do the laundry, and bring me a book to read to them when I’m on the toilet, and snuggle up on my chest to sleep, and because they tell me so, often. They are safe, healthy, exuberantly happy, funny and loved beyond words can say. I’d fight a lion to save them.
Sometimes they are like a perfect sunny blue sky day – utterly joyful, making my heart overflow with an insane amount of love and happiness, and sometimes they are like a stormy day with unreasonable demands and thundery tantrums, or even worse – incessant whining, leaving me in floods of tears and feeling like I’m losing my mind. But even then I love them so very much. Even then I’d fight a lion to save them.
We have no other family around us. No one to guide us or relieve us of the kids for a few hours or to assure us that we’re doing ok. It’s just us 4. But there is so much love in our little family. We feel complete. And really, isn’t that what it’s all about?
Today is Mother’s Day in the UK. To all the wonderful mothers doing their best and loving their little people more than they thought was possible, I salute you all! I wish you all a very happy day full of love and appreciation. xxx
[Sorry for the swearing.]
Update from Mother’s Day 2017:
It definitely gets better – http://www.instagram.com/p/BSF3UGLg-S5