Not My Finest Hour
See this happy picture of us? This is Christmas morning. This is not how we look everyday. We don't always smile. We don't always get along, and we certainly don't all sit on the couch in perfect harmony. This moment lasted about 10 seconds.
Lately I have been so overwhelmed with having 4 kids. I've said on more than one occasion this week, "There are too many people in this house!" There are so many little people and everyone needs me. Everyone has a question, (especially during school time, which is probably the hardest part of our day). somebody is always crying, somebody is always hungry (even directly after a meal) and somebody always needs a diaper change!
And sometimes I lose it...
Sunday on the way to church there was a detour on route 18 right where you are supposed to go onto route 1. Of course I got lost. And with 3 kids in the car (Mark went to the first service with John) I just broke down and cried and yelled at my phone which was NOT helping me get un-lost! I'm pretty sure Julia thought I was nuts. Why are you crying mom? Why are you mad at your phone? Where are we? Are we still lost? I imagine she was thinking all of these things...she only asked out loud, the last one.
Monday during homeschool (we started at 7:30 a.m. because Micah was up at 6 a.m.) I literally threw the broom into the laundry room. (Definitely not my finest hour) I was trying to explain to Mark what Spring was (apparently he has no idea that there are 4 seasons! How does he not know this! He's almost 6 for crying out loud!) I'm teaching two different Math lessons at the same time...Micah is bouncing off the wall because he's bored, and Amelia is tired and ready for her nap and Julia is asking me a completely different question while I am explaining Spring to Mark...and for some reason I was sweeping the kitchen at that same moment (breakfast crumbs?) when the broom broke...that's when I proceeded to throw the broom across the room and yell..."There's too many people in this house!" I stomped upstairs to my room with Amelia to calm down...
After a breather I came back to apologize and Julia goes...
"It's okay mom, I understand, it's just overwhelming right, because everyone needs you and it's hard, right?"
God, I love her.
"Yes, it's very hard, but Mommy should not be throwing brooms in the house or yelling, or stomping, and I'm sorry."
I can't explain just how overwhelming four kids is. But it's not hard all the time. There are moments of wonderful. Moments of joy. Moments of utter and complete failure. And times when I just feel so blessed I can barely take it in. I'm praying that I can handle the hard times with more grace and dignity and excuse myself before brooms go flying.
I need to remember that these times will pass. I need to remember that I was made to be all of their moms and that God chose me to raise them for a reason. And I need to remember to breathe and laugh, and ask for help. My friend Angela today reminded me, "Kristi, it's okay to ask for help!" (I hate asking for help...I don't even like people holding the door for me...I want to do it all...but I can't and it's so humbling.) I have so many great friends who are in the same boat as me so I know many can relate.
Being a parent is hard. And sometimes overwhelming. And sometimes we have days that we never want to revisit...thank goodness we don't have to!
What do you do when you are overwhelmed???