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Friday, October 29, 2010

Re-Prioritizing: Coming up for Air

Life is full of Eureka moments---those points at which reality comes into clear focus and your muddled brain finally "gets it." My brain seems to be a little slower than most, or maybe it has some holes in it (I'm envisioning Swiss cheese sized holes, here), so I seem to be a little slower to have those moments, or quicker to lose the insight. Sometimes I have to have the same insight over and over again. I'm thankful that God is so patient with me.

Last night I had one of those moments. I realized that my kiddos have totally taken over my life. Hello! I've got 4 of them, spend about 50 percent of my time stepping in, stepping over, or cleaning up their messes (ok, maybe 50 percent is a conservative estimate), and I'm just now figuring this out?

But I was always able to have some time to myself and get other things done once they were in bed for the night. It made me feel like I still had a sliver carved out for myself (and hubby). Lately, though, the time is coming later and later at night, and I'm more and more tired. And cranky. The time for myself and hubby has got to stop coming last.

My every breathing moment has become filled with teaching the kiddos, feeding the kiddos, cleaning up after the kiddos, and fighting with the kiddos, and in the gaps I write reviews, escape on the internet and try to get the household necessities done (always with a kiddo in my lap or bellowing in my ear or riding on my hip).

There simply hasn't been enough room for me to pursue some of the other things that bring me joy. Don't get me wrong, I am joyful to have my children and to spend so much time with them, but there are other things in this life that used to bring me joy and that are worth pursuing, other aspects of my personality that seem to be fading away. And I'm tired of gritting my teeth. And not getting enough sleep. And dreaming of a day when they are grown. And keeping my head cocked waiting for the dreaded sound of little footsteps creaking on the stairs.

Some changes are coming. Hopefully, some gentle changes that can be embraced by all, but there will be changes.

How do you balance your motherly and wifely duties with honoring your self identity?


  1. I'm having some of the very same issues. I only have three, but right now they have me doing tons. And breaking up fights between my 7 and 5 yo girls is an annoying problem. I will be looking forward to other comments and your "changes."

  2. I'm constantly tweaking things to bring more sanity to my household. I have assigned my kids all 'stations' which are rooms they are responsible for cleaning at the end of each day before dinner. Doesn't matter who's stuff it is, they pick it up and deliver it to where it belongs. And if they don't know, ask mom. I also have 3 dinner helpers every sets the table, another clears it, and the oldest rinses and loads the dishwasher. The setter and clearer do the job for a week then it changes to the other 2. The oldest always does his job. The other thing I have been doing is assigning buddies for a week at a time...a big kid w/ a little one.

    I know its hard! With children, there's always a need. But with daylight savings time ending, it will be dark earlier and you can start bedtime earlier too. I love that!

  3. Here! Here! You go Midwest Mama! I'm about taking back my life too~sometimes I wonder just WHAT I did before children, you know: BC??


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