I don't know how else to say it, but this week was rough.
I'm preparing for a big performance at work, and I'm feeling the crunch of deadlines and paperwork and stuff to get ready for the big night. It's been a rough work season and a rough school year for a few reasons. Sometimes children and grownups are all fine, and sometimes they are cranky, too. In the midst of all of that, I'm teaching and singing and working with my students and sprinkling in some extra meetings and it's taxing on my stimuli meter.
Make no mistake, I love my students, but we've got some challenging ones at our school this year. I'm choosing my words carefully and modeling good choices, and reminding myself that they are children (even if they think they're grown). And on the drive home I'm trying to be fully present with my girls as they talk about their days, but sometimes I just want to enforce silent time so my brain can rest.
I've spent my afternoon and evening time hustling to get my big girls to all of their rehearsals and activities and homework. They are busy with little lives of their own, and they already think I'm a stick in the mud because I try to limit their activities, online presence, and I'm a stickler about sleep and bedtimes. I'm trying to make sure I pay attention to my littlest one as well. Even though she loves her grandma who keeps her during the day, she really wants her family to stay together and hates it when we leave in the mornings for school. I try to remember they deserve my patience and attention, even though I'm already sucked dry from a day with little children who do not live in my house.
I have a husband gearing up for another summer season of awesome, but I also feel the pressure that comes along with that. He'll be speaking and planning and busy until August (just in time for me to go back to school). He loves his job, and it has given so much life to our family--but it comes at a price, too. But he's been a rockstar this week and cooked some dinners and helped with clutter control to help alleviate my evenings.
I feel like I'm drowning in laundry and housework and cooking and being all the motherly things. I feel the guilt of not keeping a clutter-free home and dream of having someone to come in to clean the floors, bathrooms, and deep-cleaning the kitchen once in a while. I feel a little selfish when I try to squeeze in a run in the afternoons rather than waiting for them to go to bed and I diffuse my essential oils for a hit of aromatherapy. In my head I know how to keep this house organized and under control, but I feel like a failure when I'm not following through. I have grand intentions every single morning of conquering a huge to-do list in the evenings when I'm home, but by the time I sit down and get everyone settled for bed, I'm usually falling asleep on the couch a little after 9pm because we are merely surviving in a season of hustle.
In short, I'm like every other working parent.
It's a perpetual state and I don't have the luxury of shutting it off, nor would I want to. I only own pockets of quiet time throughout the day, and I get rattled when someone tries to interrupt my personal quiet space. I know the notion about mamas getting their "me-time" and how important that is, but I also know that mamas have to pay for that me-time and the currency is usually clean homes, home-cooked meals, sanity, and/or laundry.
In the middle of this week, one of my girls dealt with something pretty serious and she didn't feel like the matter was resolved properly. When I reached out to the other party to try to make sense of the situation, I did not like the reply I was given.
In fact, all of my pent up frustration and exhaustion and irritation that simmers on a daily basis boiled over and I got flippin' tables angry. I was so mad and frustrated and shocked. I felt my whole body shaking and I immediately felt rage and disbelief. I was ready to pack my bags and my family and figure out a way we could just live off the grid and not deal with the situation and/or any other situations.
And I had exactly 3 minutes to get myself under control because a class of children was getting ready to walk into my room.
I sobbed and grabbed a few tissues. I begged the Lord to help me find peace because it was no where to be seen nor felt. When the students walked into the room I pretended to blow my nose and smiled and told them I had allergies and they were none the wiser.
to be continued. . .