Tuesday, October 04, 2011

There's only one "me"

That is what I have been uttering to myself...a lot lately. Since the new school year started, with a third child in half day kinder no less, I have been pulled in a million different directions. I am back and fourth to the school at least 3 times a day which works out to every few hours. There is no chunk of time to really accomplish anything. And then when adding in volunteering at the school and now subbing as a Noon Supervisor...yeah, I just need more of me. I kept thinking I just needed to settle in, get used to things, but that just isn't happening. Again bringing me back to the conclusion that I just need more of me.

More of me to do the driving. To do the mountains of laundry and the piles of dishes. More of me to help each kid with their homework, go through the mountains of papers they bring home everyday and sign the daily forms. More of me to help in each of the kids classes every week. To write all of the blogs that swim around in my head and never find their way into the cyber world. To cook fabulous meals every night, clean the house, keep up the outside, list things on Ebay, go through the kids toys, wash the sheets from five beds and then put new ones on, to read stories to the kids throughout the day, to give baths, to take the little ones to the park...these are the things that have been stressing me out. Stealing my daily joy.

Last week I just had a breakdown. With all the stress surrounding the death of Craig's dad. The kids were not listening after the millionth time they were asked to do something. And I just couldn't repeat myself. One. More. time. I kept thinking that I just couldn't do it anymore. Couldn't be everything to everyone.

After a few days of just being really upset, I picked myself up by the bootstraps and decided to try and do something about where I was. I came up with some more structure and new rules for the kids. My friend Crystal, who is also a teacher, told me about a policy she uses called "First time listener". I am implementing this with the boys. They do what they are told the first time or they sit out of whatever is happening in the next 5 minutes. That has taken immediate pressure off of me to not continuously repeat myself which has lead to tremendous frustration. I have also been telling myself throughout the day that I do not need to be turbo woman every second of the day. Somehow I have taken on a "plow through the day" attitude that from the second I get out of bed I am rushing to start laundry, clean up the kitchen, pick up toys and it literally never stops. I never stop. The last few days after a very busy morning and afternoon, working at the school and volunteering both Monday and Tuesday, I brought the kids home, cleaned up a few things, went through papers, helped a bit with homework and then around 4, watched a little T.V. I haven't watched T.V. during the day in...forever. It was really nice to sit for that block of time and just rest in my living room. Today the boys sat with me and together we watched the Dugger family. I love seeing how they do things. How calm Michelle is. How amazing her children are turning out.

Today Craig was in L.A. speaking which meant I was on my own. Homework, dinner, naps, getting all three boys dressed for karate, then all four kids to karate, bedtime routine, stories...normally I would have been very stressed out. But it wasn't as bad. Hopefully I've stumbled upon something. I pray that God would give me a peaceful spirit. That He would take my total imperfect ways and mold them into what He wants for me and my family. I'm so thankful for my four little blessings and I want to do everything I can to raise them well.

And I know that with much prayer, God will help me do my very best!