weary & long-winded

I don't want to be exhausted all of the time.
I don't want to clean up my house but I don't want to continue to see actual cobwebs in the corners in every room and globs of dust on every floor and never ending crumbs and food pieces all over the counters and thick dust on every item on every shelf.
I don't want to make meals for my family all day, every day.
I don't want to wash/dry/fold/put away laundry.
I don't want to continue to fail at potty training Violet.
I don't want to discipline Violet at all, but especially when she rebels and we are already late to go somewhere.
I don't want to take care of Violet by myself all day.
I don't want to work at my job while being a parent.
I don't want to plan each day around meals and naps and bedtimes and cranky times.
I don't want to have to close all the bedroom doors in my house to keep my cat out and immediately hide or put away clothes or blankets or things with wires or things that have any fabric on them because otherwise my cat will eat and destroy these things because she has literally been diagnosed with OCD. And she is mean a lot of the time. And I got this cat because I heard that pets help you have less stress in your life when actually this cat has ruined irreplaceable pieces of clothing and things I've made and other things that I really really liked and oh by the way she really really causes me stress.
I don't want to have to carry a lot of stuff with me whenever V & I go anywhere.
I don't want to listen to Violet's favorite song on her Sunday school songs CD one. More. Time.

I want to have free time. A lot of it, not in bits during a nap time or even an overnight break when Violet might stay at my parents house.
I want to do the things I love to do when I want to do them.
I want to wake up when I am rested.
I want to be able to drop in multiple places in one general errands trip without having to take so much time to get Violet in and out of her car seat and gather up all of her stuff that I never have enough hands for.
I want people to acknowledge that Mike and I are doing a wonderfully amazing job at keeping up our friendships with all of our non-parent friends who do not know how time consuming and exhausting this is and how easy (and normal, for most people) it would be to never initiate hanging out with anyone.
I want even JUST ONE of my close friends to become a parent so we can commiserate together about all of this.
I want to be able to work at my job, which I love, and have time to commit myself to it more, so I am able to indulge and contribute my creativity more than I can with a "working parent" amount of hours.

I also want to be with Violet every day and paint pictures with Violet and sing songs with her and teach her things and read to her and hug and kiss her and be around her all most of the time, all of course with Mike by my side.

I love my life... but (at least right now) it is incredibly hard. And I am not blind to the fact that new and much harder parenting challenges will arise with time and that when you add more kids, you add more of everything. These days, I'm trying to figure out how to make my life sustainable, because I feel overwhelmed a lot of the time. It seems like the only time-consuming things I can cut out of my life are things that bring me joy and refreshment, like my job (most of the time) and maintaining this blog and gardening and reading and sleeping.

Let me end with a photo of Violet. Seeing her reminds me of why I do all of this.
But I am trying to figure out how to keep all of this up.

Regular blog vibe to resume tomorrow.


alison lewis May 14, 2013 at 5:08 PM  

I LOVE THIS POST. Also, we should hang out, except it would add something else to your life. Shortly after having Noah, one of my neighbors saw me walking to my car (obviously looking overwhelmed, I guess), and later said to me with a smirk, "Gosh, is it really that bad?" Yeah, lady with no kids, sometimes it is. So, in closing, parenthood is not easy, at all. Noah is not interested in potty training at all, and he still sleeps with a paci. He'll be 3 in July. And guess what? I really don't care. Also, Violet is so sweet, but I've told you that before. Whatever you are doing, it's going very well.

my name is karen. May 15, 2013 at 9:52 AM  

Thanks Alison!! Hanging out sometime during the day wouldn't add much, since there are a couple days out of the week when there are chunks of the day that we don't have set plans. And I agree that it's hard when people just don't get it! Anyway, we should hang out soon!

Anonymous May 15, 2013 at 2:55 PM  

Hi Karen! I've been reading your blog for awhile but haven't commented yet. I stay home with my 20 month old son, so I know how you feel. I know how the sweet wonderful moments are often punctuated by all the feelings you listed above. Anyway, I just wanted to tell you that what helped me immensely was getting him into daycare a few half days a week, starting when he was around 14 months. It's been great for him socially, and it's been great for me mentally and emotionally. I'm a better mom because for a few hours every week I can hang up my uniform and just be the old me. It took me a few months to get over feeling guilty about it, because I felt that I was somehow being selfish. But I wasn't, and my whole family has benefitted from my increased happiness. As far as the cost, it's worth it. Even just one day a week would probably refresh you enough. Home based daycares are usually less expensive and more one-on-one than daycare centers, but both are good. Imagine a toddler worn out from a day of playing and crafts, but with no toys to put away or mess to clean up! Hang in there - even when it's hard we still have the best job on earth.

my name is karen. May 16, 2013 at 3:58 PM  

Thanks for the comment! It's nice to hear from other moms about how tough it is- sometimes I feel so alone in how difficult it can be for me. Those are some good thoughts and I will definitely consider it. Sounds like it's been really helpful for you, which is great!

Anonymous May 16, 2013 at 7:33 PM  

I love reading your posts. And I especially love when you write honest posts. Life's not peachy all of the time. But being a mother is awesome (I assume). Reading this post was a reality check for me. Okay, kids are cute... but these are all the deets that aren't included when they leave the hospital. Please ALWAYS be awesome. And, I was listening to the Amity Affliction on full blast while I was reading your post.

Kate May 17, 2013 at 12:51 PM  

Truth! I wish I lived closer. Doesn't our apt. on East Mad feel so. far. away? This post is just great. I feel the same way most days, even though I go to work and Cole goes to daycare. The mess at home still waits. And waits. We are dying for our first friend to have their baby (JUNE!) so that we can eventually swap babysitting. I would so gladly do this for you if I was in A2! Hang in there. I bet it felt good to just write it down. XO

my name is karen. May 23, 2013 at 9:24 PM  

Ha! The good old E Madison days... :) Thanks for commenting, Kate- it helps that other people can relate. <3

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