Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Reality

I'm still in the newborn bliss stage.

I'm also in the oh-crap-I-have-four-kids stage.

And a dog.

And a husband.

And dreams that need care and attention just like my babies.

And dishes to be washed and laundry to be sorted and why don't I have one of those vacuums that runs all by itself?

Life around here is chaotic. The clutter multiplies from each room to the next. I swear I get rid of one thing and four things show up in its place. My mind is running a mile a minute, and physically I'm doing the same thing. But I just GAVE BIRTH and my body can't quite keep up with what I need it to do. Throw in the lack of sleep and I'm a big ole mess.

This is reality, folks.

I often post about how wonderful things are and how happy I am, and those are all true. But the reality is that mixed in between the wonderful things and the happy is pure and utter chaos. Most of the time, the chaos is great. I can handle it. But sometimes the chaos is the dirty, messy, tantrum-throwing, I-can't-find-my-homework, stop-hitting-your-sister, I-hate-you-mom-you-ruined-my-life kind of chaos.

The reality is that it's not all butterflies and sunshine and happy unicorns around here. The glitter and sparkle aren't always exciting; sometimes they are just a bitch to clean up off the floor.

Sometimes we run out of toilet paper in the middle of a stomach bug. Sometimes the dog jumps on the counter and EATS the dinner I just pulled out of the oven. Sometimes I just want two minutes so that I can pee...ALONE.

A lot of these not-so-pretty moments are just part of living. Sometimes there are moments in there that I'm not proud of. Like when I lose my temper over things that are meaningless. Or when I realize my words are the problem. Or when I pretend I can't find the book she wants me to read for the 300th time and the truth is I kicked it under the couch.

I'm real. This ain't always a picnic.

The whole "Super Mama" thing is not because I think I'm just the most fabulous mother to ever walk the face of the Earth. It's because my KIDS think I am. Isn't that amazing? We can have the worst day ever around here...I can forget that we dance class and only have ten minutes left to eat so I pour a bowl of cereal for everyone, and then we are late to dance class, and then I almost run out of gas getting home and have to pull over in below freezing temps to pump the gas and I'm cold and damn it why didn't I tell the hubby to get me gas that morning, and crap we didn't finish homework and I didn't dry the towels so showers won't happen tonight and the baby wants to nurse RIGHT FREAKING NOW and oops bedtime passed 30 minutes ago...

...and as I come to tuck them in to bed, they tell me that it was the BEST day ever.

That I'm the best MOM ever.

On those particular nights, I typically hug them close, remind them how much I love them and how amazing they are, and then off I go to cry about how I don't deserve such awesome kids.

But they DO love me...in the worst and in the best moments. And life isn't just one or the other. So if they can still love me in the worst...well, then, I guess I'm doing a good job.

Today is yet another no-school-because-Mother-Nature-is-a-whack-job day. The kids are home and it's too cold to leave the house and they are still getting over a stomach bug anyway...so today, I'm just going to try and hold it together. At this very moment, the baby is asleep on my chest, and I'm soaking in the sweet newborn-ness. Bam and Gray are laying on the couch together sharing a pillow and a blanket, and Tee went and poured everyone a drink. They are all being so kind and sweet, and I'm overflowing with love for them.

I feel so LUCKY to have them. Yes, I also have a ton of laundry and dishes and cleaning to do. Yes, I have my own homework that I need to catch up on. Yes, I have a LOT going on in my head that I want to do or achieve that just aren't happening right now. BUT...most importantly...I have THIS. I have this chaos that is so full of commotion and crazy and joy and love and I wouldn't change it for anything.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Taking Leaps

We are falling into a routine. Tee and Bam are at school, doing their thing. Gray and the Baby are home with me. We're figuring things out. Slowly.

Toddlers are harder than newborns. Just an FYI, in case you were wondering.

School started back up for me. Yeah, I'm a bit crazy like that, going to school while juggling 3,000 kids and everything else...but I WANT THIS. I truly do. I NEED to finish school. For me. For my kids. It has to happen. I'm not slowing down or stopping this time.

What's interesting, though, is that the Baby's birth has triggered inside me a whole new way of approaching my goals. As a family, we've veered away from a lot of the mainstream thoughts on parenting and have adopted what some may call more of an attachment parenting style. It's all just labels, really. At the end of the day, we love our kids and do the very best we can for them. Just like every other parent I know, whether they make the same choices I do or not! My point is that as we've taken this new path, I've discovered a lot more about myself and where my heart lies. I've been thinking about where to go with my degree and my career over the last several years, and this pregnancy really set me on the path to fully understand what my heart has been telling me. Holding this baby in my arms, it all seemed clear.

Vague enough, huh?

Well, it is what it is for now. I need to explore more what I want to do with these ideas and plans that are exploding inside my head. I've found a love for all things natural. I want to explore how nutrition can make or break your health. I'm in love with natural childbirth, and at bare minimum an informed CHOICE in birth. Breastfeeding has become a passion of mine. Raising babies and kids has fulfilled me in ways I didn't think possible. I have expanded the area that my degree is heading in, and I think I will be able to finally put some concrete plans together. Plans that make my heart sing!

In the meantime, I am jumping head first into my business. I've puttered around long enough, putting it off, getting scared, not taking the leap. I'm no longer allowing myself to get in the way of my plans. That's really it, I get in the way of myself. No more!

Taking leaps is scary business.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

2014

Hello, 2014!

I realize that life doesn't exactly start fresh when the ball drops,  but for us, this year, it felt like it. 2013 was a year full of changes, challenges, and heartbreak. We lost two very important people to our family and it has shaken all of us to our core. We dealt with job loss and financial woes. Overall, it was a terrible, terrible year.

We were happy and ready to put 2013 behind us, hoping and praying that 2014 would be filled with wonderful things!

And so far...it has!

We welcomed our sweet baby girl into the world on January 4. She is beautiful and amazing and has added excitement and joy into our house.

She has also added exhaustion and lack of alone time for mommy, but hey, who needs any of that, right?

In all honesty, I LOVE the newborn stage. Truly, I do! Sure, getting up to feed the little one throughout the night isn't glamorous, but I don't mind doing it. She's almost two weeks old now, and we are starting to get into a groove. The immediate wave of exhaustion has subsided and I'm pretty content with the lack of sleep. This stage passes SO quickly and I'm trying to treasure every single second of it!

With the big kids in school, it's just me and the little girls during the day. We are still trying to get in a groove. I'm still trying to balance my schoolwork and my business with my girls, and I've put almost everything aside so that the girls and I can bond together. The transition when you add a new family member is sometimes challenging, and my sweet Gray has needed a bit extra time to get used to her new little sister. But we are getting there! Slowly but surely, we are finding our footing and getting in a groove.

Besides the challenges that come with having four kids...I truly am deliriously happy right now. This little girl is pure bliss, and our family feels more complete than it ever has. The hubs and I are truly blessed!

So far, 2014 has been just as wonderful as I had imagined it would be!