Pages

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Something Sweet

My name is Lisa, and I am so very tired.

This last week has been a flurry of doctor appointments and Pre-K screenings and more doctor appointments (specialist) and oh there may just be another doctor visit next week to stave off a different doctor appointment (different specialist) on the 29th. Did I mention the doctor appointments (back to the first specialist) in three weeks? Because those are a thing, too.

My poor kids must have the most wacked out sinus cavities of all the children in the known world. For the time being two of them are going on 3 weeks of the heavy duty antibiotics to knock out ear and sinus infections caused by- and this is new to me- eustachian tube dysfunction. The youngest boy faces tubes and adenoid removal if he doesn't clear out at the end of those three weeks.

This is not what I came to write about. What I came to write about was this hot mess right here:


Which, of course, immediately made me think of this:


Y'all. This is just the tip of the iceberg. Except it wasn't, because it was actually the last thing I saw related to this insanity as I made my way through sticky floors to the kitchen. What I came home to find was their father passed out on the sofa and the four of them watching a movie, practically sitting in a pile of sugar. There was a sipppy cup that may have at one point been full of sugar but had since been kicked over and strewn across my floors. There had to have been a couple of cups of sugar dumped out here. There were piles of sugar all over the dining room table. Again in the kitchen.

This may have been as good a sign as any to get rid of all the sugar in my home and to follow in the footsteps of the Schaub family. Only problem is: I'm not a stay at home mom anymore, and I'm gone from the house easily 10 hours a day because of my job. My nights are long and my mornings early. Sadly, convenience foods (read: processed) have been making more and more appearances in the home.

After the week I described above and the delightful insomnia that prevented sleep until about 2 this morning, I nearly lost it. But I didn't. I can't blame the kids- they were being kids whose father had passed out while watching them. And I can't blame their father- he had basically been up for 36 hours straight between watching them (our babysitter is out of town) and working overnight. Of course he was tired.

So I loaded them into the swagger wagon and drove. Just... drove. Put the windows down, the music on and went. Not for long, because we still had to have dinner (it was already 7:30 at this point, half an hour past bedtime).

At this point I have wiped down the table and counters twice. I've swept and vacuumed several times over. I am quite certain that there is still sugar on the floor. In the cracks of the hardwood...

And so I am tired. My feet are a little sticky. My blog post is not as quippy and cheerful as I'd like it to be.

But make no mistake. I am happy. Despite everything, these kids have my heart and soul and life would be so very dull without them. Have a good night, y'all. Freshly washed sheets are calling my name.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Gentle Parenting WIN!

As of late I have been trying to counteract years of aggression and antagonistic behavior in my children by attempting to be as gentle as possible in situations that sent me over the edge in the past. It's been easier to filter through the battles and recognize what is truly important. My house is not exactly what one would call pristine, but since trying a softer tone and encouraging words it's cleaner than before. My boys still fight and tussle, but with less rage and more words. We're working on that as well as volume. This house is not a quiet one, and that's ok. It's quiet when it needs to be. They ask for stories and the calming ambiance of calm.com to help them unwind at the end of the day. We're finding a new normal, and while it still has its hiccups, we're getting there.


Here's tonight's GP WIN of note: The Middle has a terrible habit of lying. And when I say terrible, I mean constant lying. It's one of the worst antagonizing behaviors he has. That and randomly smacking/kicking people for no apparent reason at all. One of the cooler things about him though is his other side, completely opposite of this other, negative-attention seeking behavior. This is the side that wants only to be held, cuddled, petted, kissed, and otherwise just simply loved on. He will love on people in a sometimes overwhelming way... And tonight I decided to use that to my advantage. I caught him sneaking a piece of food off of a plate just before dinner and when I asked him what he was eating, he immediately fell back to his defensive lying phase. Even when I told him that he would not be in trouble for telling the truth, that I was not going to be angry with him, he continued to lie. There was kind of this gentle nudge in my mind, and I got down to his level. Holding his hand, I looked him right in those beautiful brown eyes and said quietly, "If you tell me the truth, I will give you a hug." His face broke into a huge grin. "I ate a fish stick," he confessed, "and then I drank some water."

Guess who got an enormous hug?

I thanked him for being honest with me and repeated that I was not angry with him. We talked about asking permission first next time, and he nodded, then ran off to play after planting a huge kiss on my cheek.

Just like that. How amazing this feels!! From now on there is going to be a lot more hugging.

Now... if only I can work out that connection with the four year old....

Monday, April 7, 2014

Stella Maris

As undulating waves breath comes in, breath goes out:
One... for faith
Two.... for hope
Three... for charity.
Cadence and rhythm of words that move like the ocean, 
the rolling waters that cleanse. 

As like a light Peace overcomes sorrow
One... for Joy
Two... for Sorrow
Three... for Glory
Four... for Light
Light that shines as bright as the sun itself, 
The fire that purges.

I'm not really sure where I am taking that. It feels incomplete, but it says everything. 

Sorry to think and run, but today was incredibly busy and I'm ready to call it a night.

Monday, February 24, 2014

These Days

These days my boys are helping more around the house. I come home from work and we all work together to clean. At first it was dreadful. Now it's a game, and Winter  sings and dances the "Clean Up" song.

These days we sit down and read a story nearly every night. Not just the little kid books, but "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe", too.

These days, the planes don't wake me. Things don't keep me up.

These days, I laugh more than I've laughed in a very, very, very long time.

These days, it really feels as though things are coming together. Slowly, but surely, and it's exciting.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Alone

Last night I bemoaned being the only adult in the house. There's something to be said for grown up conversation after all the munchkins have drifted into dream land. A friend commented back that at least I wasn't coming home to a house devoid of humans (their humans were gone for the night).

To which I promptly replied (and what human being under constant interaction with children/barrage of the adults of the working world wouldn't) that coming home to a house devoid of humans, even for just a little while, sounds heavenly.

Tonight I'm facing another night as the sole adult. Given the circumstances, it is as it should be. Back in the day I would have been morose. Sad. Gloomy. Wailing about how lonely I was. These days, I know enough now to realize that these "woe is me" feelings are simply sheer exhaustion. I'm not defeated, I'm tired.

And you know what? I'm grateful for the exhaustion. It tells me I'm doing something right. It reminds me that I'm busy working hard to support and entertain my family. It reminds me that I don't stop doing what I'm supposed to be doing, that I'm not afraid to do what needs to be done (though there is so much more that needs to be done), and that I am stronger than I thought.

Monday, February 17, 2014

8th Wedding Anniversary

Today marks the eighth year of the day we were married... and since we still are, happy anniversary!

Today really was happy. There were a couple of quiet, reflective moments that brought me down but only for a moment. Admittedly today was far better than Valentine's Day!

I'm grateful for my job. I work with a really great group of women who are strong and funny and patient as I'm continuing to relearn. I love helping people, getting to know people, making people who otherwise seem grumpy smile. I love that there is such a family atmosphere. I love how passionate the doctor is about her work. And I love that at any given moment the whole store can be singing with each other. Yes, I said singing. It's amazing. How can someone mope around when there is all of this fantastic-ness happening?

Today I came home and the Ecks had stepped up his game with the kids. He was utterly over it after watching the kids for almost 10 hours (welcome to my world!). He'd actually tried to get the kids to clean and he'd made dinner. The Middle excitedly talked about how Daddy had actually done things with them today. This made my heart happy for them. Even though the house was still a wreck he'd tried, and I made sure to thank him and encourage him to be consistent. It was hard for me at first, too. But it gets easier... And how can you mope when people truly try and your children are happy?

Tonight the children and I worked together to clean and after we cuddled together and read the next chapter of "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe". When I asked my kids if they knew who Adam and Eve were so that they could get a better understanding of the phrase, "Sons and Daughters of Adam and Eve", the Middle floored me by being exactly right. We've read the creation story but that was forever ago. He's amazing. We said bedtime prayers and everyone gave me hugs and kisses and went straight to bed, no complaining. How can anybody mope with such great and loving children?

So happy anniversary to me. My heart and life are full. I am complete.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Just For You, Darlin'

I've been getting some flack for not posting lately. While it's nice to be missed I've had some very good reasons:
1. No internet here at the house. This is coming to you via the phone and it's kind of a pain.
2. The impending divorce. There's been a lot of anger and bitterness and one day when things are safe again I'll write the world's most moving and beautiful piece about it. But right now the wound is fresh and often the injured lash out in ways they don't really mean.

I will say... admit, whatever, that I'm often angriest when I realize how very much I do still love him. He's done some horrible things since he left, and yet part of me still clings to a ghost of an idea of the man I was first with. I'm sure in time that will pass. It's hard to give up on something you fought so hard for for so long. But you shouldn't have to cut the puzzle pieces to fit together and make the big picture happen.

I digress.

Things otherwise seem to be falling into place. I've got a good job, lots of love and support, a replacement vehicle in the works, and my kids. My amazing, beautiful, resilient kids. It's like I told my kindergartener: "We may not be rich but boy are we wealthy!"

That's all for now. It's been a very long day and I've got to be up early tomorrow.

Until later.

No wait, you know what? I want to add that he hasn't just done horrible things. He's done some nice things, too. He isn't exactly my hero at the moment but he does see the kids almost every day. So there's that.